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Nuclear weapons menace nonetheless actual UN chief warns on anniversary of US atomic bomb assault on Nagasaki, Japan

TOKYO — Nagasaki marked the anniversary of the world’s second atomic bombing Thursday with the United Nations chief and the town’s mayor urging international leaders to take concrete steps towards nuclear disarmament. Secretary-Normal Antonio Guterres, the primary United Nations chief to go to Nagasaki, mentioned fears of nuclear struggle are nonetheless current 73 years after the Nagasaki and Hiroshima bombings and that the assaults ought to by no means be repeated.

He raised considerations about slowing efforts to denuclearize, saying present nuclear states are modernizing their arsenals.

“Disarmament processes have slowed and even come to a halt,” Guterres informed the viewers on the Nagasaki peace park. “Right here in Nagasaki, I name on all nations to decide to nuclear disarmament and to start out making seen progress as a matter of urgency.” Guterres added that nuclear weapons states ought to take the lead. “Allow us to all commit to creating Nagasaki the final place on Earth to undergo nuclear devastation,” he mentioned.

Greater than 5,000 residents, together with Nagasaki atom bomb survivors, and representatives of about 70 nations remembered the victims as they noticed a minute of silence at 11:02 a.m., the second the plutonium bomb Fatman hit the town.

Emperor Akihito joined a silent prayer from Tokyo together with his spouse Michiko as they monitored the ceremony on TV, marking the final Nagasaki commemoration earlier than his deliberate abdication subsequent April, Kyodo Information reported.

The U.S. bombing of Nagasaki on Aug. 9, 1945, killed an estimated 70,000 folks three days after a bomb dropped on Hiroshima killed 140,000. They have been adopted by Japan’s give up, ending World Battle II.

Guterres mentioned the peace and nuclear disarmament motion began by survivors of the atomic bombings has unfold around the globe however frustration over the gradual progress led to final yr’s adoption of the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons.

Japan, regardless of being the one nation on this planet to have suffered nuclear assaults, has not signed the treaty due to its delicate place as an American ally protected by the U.S. nuclear umbrella.

Nagasaki Mayor Tomihisa Taue urged Japan’s authorities to do extra to hunt nuclear disarmament, particularly within the Asian area to assist obtain a nuclear-free Korean Peninsula. He mentioned residents of the atomic-bombed cities are hoping to see North Korea denuclearized.

Taue urged Tokyo to signal the treaty and “fulfill its ethical obligation to steer the world towards denuclearization.” He mentioned greater than 300 native assemblies have adopted resolutions calling on Japan to signal and ratify the treaty.

Japan seeks to shut the hole between the views of nuclear and non-nuclear states about nuclear disarmament to finally obtain a nuclear-free world, mentioned Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, repeating nearly the identical phrase he utilized in a speech three days earlier in Hiroshima.

At a gathering later Thursday with Abe, an atom bomb survivor, or “hibakusha,” confronted the prime minister, asking how precisely he may bridge the divide whereas remaining beneath the U.S. nuclear umbrella.

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