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HOME  > Past issues  > 2023 October 25 - 31  > Japan Gensuikyo hosts panel discussion in Tokyo on occasion of UN Disarmament Week
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2023 October 25 - 31 [PEACE]

Japan Gensuikyo hosts panel discussion in Tokyo on occasion of UN Disarmament Week

October 26, 2023
The Japan Council against A and H Bombs (Japan Gensuikyo) on October 24, the first day of UN Disarmament Week, held a panel discussion in Tokyo and streamed it live online.

Akahata correspondent in Washington D.C. Shimada Minetaka participated online in the discussion session. Shimada reported on several changes in the United States after the entry into force of the UN Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons (TPNW). He said that the enactment of a law to provide compensation to nuclear test victims in the State of New Mexico is under discussion, and that the number of representatives who support the TPNW has reached 40 in the Lower House.

According to Shimada, many TPNW signatories criticized the logic of “nuclear deterrence” during discussions at the First Committee of the UN General Assembly, and nuclear-weapon states could not make a persuasive counterargument. He said that Japan stood on the same side as nuclear-weapon states, hindering the global nuclear disarmament effort.

Japanese Communist Party member of the House of Councilors Inoue Satoshi said that it is important for the world’s governments to work to settle the current crisis situations, including Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, based on international law and the UN Charter. However, he said, the Japanese government is going ahead with a major military expansion. He criticized the government for its intent to possess a Japan-U.S. integrated air missile defense capability and for sticking to the “nuclear deterrence” policy.

Inoue warned that Japan is heading down a dangerous road with its willingness to take part in Japan-U.S.-ROK joint military exercises under the U.S. nuclear umbrella. He said, “The need is for Japan to instead turn to conducting peace diplomacy.”

Tsuchida Yayoi, Japan Gensuikyo vice secretary general, talked about what civil society should do in preparation for the second conference of State Parties to the TPNW slated for November at the UN headquarters in NYC. Tsuchida underscored the importance of appealing to the world that only with elimination of nuclear weapons can the world secure peace, and said that as many countries as possible should participate in the November conference. She called for more efforts to increase public awareness on this issue nationally and internationally and to tighten cooperation with global civil society organizations.

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