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HOME  > Past issues  > 2020 July 8 - 14  > Japan Gensuikyo secretary general talks about significance of 2020 antinuke World Conference amid pandemic crisis
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2020 July 8 - 14 [PEACE]

Japan Gensuikyo secretary general talks about significance of 2020 antinuke World Conference amid pandemic crisis

July 11, 2020

The 2020 World Conference against A and H Bombs slated for August is coming up. In order to prevent the spread of COVID-19, all the main events of the annual antinuke world conference will be held online. These are the international meeting (August 2), the Hiroshima-Day rally (August 6), and the Nagasaki-Day rally (August 9).

Secretary General of the Japan Council against A and H Bombs (Japan Gensuikyo) Yasui Masakazu in an Akahata interview on July 11 talked about the significance of this year’s world conference amid the global health emergency. The following are excerpts from his interview.

The coronavirus pandemic has elucidated the vulnerability of today’s world to the widening inequalities and poverty under neoliberalism and the great power-centric world order in terms of protecting people’s lives. The need is to shift the global attention from “one’s own national” security to “human” security as a whole.

In this context, Hibakusha’s call for the elimination of nuclear weapons has a special meaning. The survivors of atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, who experienced the human extinction crisis and the extreme conditions caused by the use of nuclear weapons, have been spreading the message that human beings can never coexist with nuclear weapons based on their experience. This message has influenced people throughout the world.

Since the UN treaty banning nuclear weapons was adopted three years ago, civil society and many governments of non-nuclear weapons states have been working hard to obtain an early entry into force of the treaty, which has cornered the forces clinging to nuclear weapons. At present, 81 countries have signed the antinuke treaty and the number of ratifications has reached 39, 11 short of the required 50 for the treaty to enter into force.

This year’s World Conference will be a rally to create new collaboration between the UN, the world’s governments, and civil society. This collaboration will organize public movements seeking to win an early enforcement of the N-ban treaty and pushsing nuclear weapons states and their allies to implement the NPT obligation to achieve nuclear disarmament and the agreements reached in the NPT Review Conferences.

Under the ongoing corona crisis, it has become more evident that the Prime Minister Abe-led government intends to put demands of the U.S. Trump administration before the protection of Japanese people’s lives. This aroused anger among the general public, which pressured the Abe government to improve its anti-corona measures. In addition, more and more people have stood up for gender equality and cuts in military spending.

This year’s World Conference will also be a rally to develop people’s joint struggle and take a step toward changing Japan into a nation that plays a role as the only A-bombed nation with the war-renouncing Constitution in global efforts to have the UN treaty come into force.

Past related article:
> Abolition 2000 and IPB endorse August ‘Peace Wave’ action [ May 27, 2020]

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