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HOME  > Past issues  > 2017 September 20 - 26  > Global “Peace Wave” action kicks off to promote nations’ entry into UN treaty banning nuclear weapons
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2017 September 20 - 26 [PEACE]

Global “Peace Wave” action kicks off to promote nations’ entry into UN treaty banning nuclear weapons

September 21, 2017
As part of the international simultaneous “Peace Wave” action aiming to encourage all governments in the world to sign the UN treaty prohibiting nuclear weapons, various actions, including rallies, took place in Hiroshima, Nagasaki, Tokyo, and other cities in Japan on September 20 as the signing ceremony for the treaty was held at the UN Headquarters in NYC.

This global campaign, which was approved at the 2017 World Conference Against A and H Bombs, began on September 20 and will last until September 26, the UN International Day for the Total Elimination of Nuclear Weapons.

In Hiroshima, 90 people, including Hibakusha, gathered near the A-Bomb Dome to hold a “Peace Wave” kick-off rally. General Director of the Hiroshima Association of A-bomb Sufferers Sakuma Kunihiko said, “The Hibakusha-led signature collection campaign will help to hasten the entry into force of the Nuclear Weapons Ban Treaty. From the A-bombed city of Hiroshima, we call on all leaders in the world to sign the treaty.”

In Nagasaki’s Peace Park, a rally hosted by five prefectural Hibakusha organizations took place with 120 people participating. Representatives of the five organizations delivered speeches. One of them, Vice President of the Nagasaki Atomic bomb Survivors Council Tanaka Shigemitsu in his speech said, “I really welcome the fact that nations began signing the N-ban treaty today. This is the starting point for realizing Hibakusha’s earnest wish for a world without nuclear weapons.” After the rally, the participants released helium balloons. Post cards on which a Hibakusha-signature form is printed are tied with strings to the balloons.

In Tokyo, the Japan Confederation of A- and H-Bomb Sufferers Organizations (Nihon Hidankyo) held a rally in the Diet building and also carried out a sit-in in front of the Prime Minister’s Office. Near Shinjuku Station, members of the Organizing Committee of the antinuke World Conference and peace activists took to the streets to collect signatures in support of Hibakusha’s appeal for the elimination of nuclear weapons.

At the rally, Hidankyo Secretary General Kido Sueichi stressed that in order to overcome the ongoing North Korea crisis, it is vital for Japan and other countries to participate in the international nuclear weapons ban treaty.

Hibakusha handed over a written request to the Japanese government to join the treaty to representatives of the Japanese Communist Party, the Liberal Democratic Party, the Komei Party, the Democratic Party, the Social Democratic Party, and the Liberal Party.

From the JCP, Kasai Akira, Motomura Nobuko, Ohira Yoshinobu (Lower House), and Inoue Satoshi (Upper House) attended the rally.

On behalf of the JCP, Kasai delivered a speech in solidarity, saying, “PM Abe should change his mind and sign the treaty. It’s never too late.” Representatives of the DP, SDP, and LP separately said that as the only A-bombed nation, Japan should join the international agreement to prohibit nuclear arms.

Past related articles:
> Japan’s absence in N-ban treaty will evoke global distrust of Japan [ September 14, 2017]
> Protesting against N. Korea’s nuclear test, Hiroshima Hibakusha collect antinuke signatures [ September 7, 2017]

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