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HOME  > Past issues  > 2023 July 5 - 11  > 37% of all 1,788 local assemblies in Japan call for Japan's participation in UN no-nuke treaty
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2023 July 5 - 11 [PEACE]

37% of all 1,788 local assemblies in Japan call for Japan's participation in UN no-nuke treaty

July 6 & 7, 2023

The number of statements adopted by prefectural, ward, city, town, and village assemblies calling for Japan's participation in the UN Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons (TPNW) reached 659, accounting for about 37% of all 1,788 local assemblies in Japan, according to the Japan Council against A and H Bombs (Japan Gensuikyo) statement issued on July 6.

The latest adoption took place on June 26 at the Kofu City assembly (Yamanashi Pref.). The assembly in 2000 and 2022 rejected a citizens' petition urging the city to call on the central government to sign and ratify the TPNW. After that, concerned citizens formed a group. They organized and held a symposium and lecture meetings to make the TPNW known to Kofu residents. The civic group in June submitted a petition again to the assembly. The petition this time received the backing from 17 lawmakers, including Japanese Communist Party assemblypersons, in the 32-member assembly.

The statement the Kofu City assembly adopted criticizes Russia's threat of the use of nuclear weapons, pointing out that nuclear-weapon states have always posed a threat to world peace. It states, "Since the TPNW is the first step toward the elimination of nuclear weapons, many countries should be TPNW signatories."

On the previous day, the second batch of signatures (343,481), calling on the Japanese government to join the TPNW was submitted to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. The total number of signatures submitted amounts to 1,304,019.

Prior to the signature submission, antinuke organizations held a meeting in the House of Councilors members' office building. Eight JCP Dietmembers took part in the meeting and Kasai Akira, JCP member of the Lower House, delivered a speech in solidarity.

A signature-drive promoter, International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons (ICAN) executive official Kawasaki Akira, said that Japan as the only country experiencing the tragedy of atomic bombings should join the treaty and should tell the world about the global catastrophe nuclear weapons would bring about.

Takakusaki Hiroshi, a Japan Gensuikyo representative director, said, "The Japanese government should sign and ratify the TPNW without delay and attend a meeting of State Parties to the TPNW."

Hamasumi Jiro, an antenatal Hibakusha of the Japan Confederation of A- and H-Bomb Sufferers Organizations (Nihon Hidankyo), said that Hibakusha, in parallel with promoting the Hibakusha-led signature-collection drive, will continue working together with ICAN and Japan Gensuikyo to realize a world without nuclear weapons.
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