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HOME  > Past issues  > 2021 July 14 - 27  > 2021 antinuke World Conference takes 1st step toward achieving nuclear weapons-free world by using TPNW as leverage: Japan Gensuikyo secretary general
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2021 July 14 - 27 [PEACE]

2021 antinuke World Conference takes 1st step toward achieving nuclear weapons-free world by using TPNW as leverage: Japan Gensuikyo secretary general

July 17, 2021

The 2021 World Conference against A and H Bombs will take place online due to the pandemic with a focus on the International Meeting (Aug.2), the Hiroshima Day Rally (Aug.6), and the Nagasaki Day Rally (Aug.9). Akahata on July 17 carried an interview with the Secretary General of the Japan Council against A and H Bombs (Japan Gensuikyo), Yasui Masakazu, about features of this year’s World Conference.

Yasui in the Akahata interview stressed that this year’s World Conference has historical significance as the first international antinuke event to be held after the UN Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons (TPNW) came into force in January.

Yasui cited that government representatives to the World Conference include Ambassador/Director, Disarmament, Arms Control and Non- Proliferation, Federal Ministry for Europe, Integration and Foreign Affairs of Austria, Alexander Kmentt who will chair the first meeting of States Parties to the TPNW slated for January 2022. Yasui said that as Kmentt expects that the meeting will set a 10-year deadline for the destruction of nuclear weapons, his remarks at the World Conference will draw much international attention.

Yasui said that in the World Conference, delegates of antinuke peace movements in Asian countries as well as other countries will report on their experiences and activities. He added that among the delegates, there are activists from nuclear armed nations, including the U.S., Britain, and France, as well as from “nuclear umbrella” reliant states like Belgium and South Korea. He said that they will talk about their efforts to push their governments to sign and ratify the UN treaty and that the participation of these delegates will contribute to increasing public opinion and movements urging world leaders to join the TPNW and developing further cooperation with governments and other public organizations.

Yasui pointed out that this year’s World Conference seeks to expose the fallacy behind the nuclear deterrence theory and prevent nuclear weapons from ever being used by presenting stories of A-bomb survivors (Hibakusha) which expose the inhumane nature of the use of nuclear weapons. In this regard, Yasui said, Secretary General of the Japan Confederation of A- and H-Bomb Sufferers Organizations (Nihon Hidankyo) Kido Sueichi, Hibakusha from Hiroshima and Nagasaki, and the head of the Korean Atomic Bomb Casualty Association in South Korea will deliver speeches.

The Japan Gensuikyo secretary general pointed out that this year’s conference will provide an opportunity for various grassroots activists, such as those who work with the signature campaign calling on the Japanese government to join the TPNW, to exchange their views and experiences, which will help further develop people’s movements and collaboration to work to bring into power a Japanese government willing to sign and ratify the TPNW.

In addition, Yasui reported on a plan to hold a session in the Hiroshima Day Rally with the attendance of Dietmembers under the theme of “TPNW and Japan” so that concerned citizens and opposition parties in their joint policies for the coming general election will work together to change the government to one which will sign and ratify the TPNW.

Past related articles:
> July 7 marks 4th anniversary of TPNW [July 7, 2021]
> JCP welcomes entry into force of UN Treaty prohibiting nuclear weapons [January 23, 2021]
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