UN Secretary-General: ‘No more Hiroshimas. No more Nagasakis’

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Remembrance in Hiroshima.

Report by NewsroomPlus.com

UN NEWS: In a message to mark the 70th anniversary of the atomic bombing of the Japanese city of Hiroshima, United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has renewed his resolve to advance the goal of achieving a world “free of the nuclear shadow”. 

“Seven decades after their first use in conflict, this sombre occasion commemorates the tens of thousands who died that day. It honours the survivors who have suffered severe adversity in the aftermath. The United Nations stands with them, resolved to realize their vision of a nuclear-weapon-free world,” said Mr. Ban.

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Remembrance in Hiroshima. Photograph credit: Jem Yoshioka http://jemshed.com/about/

“Your commemoration should reverberate from this city across the world, reminding all people of the need for urgent action to eliminate nuclear weapons once and for all,” he added in the message to the Peace Memorial Ceremony, delivered by Acting High Representative for Disarmament Affairs Kim Won-soo.

More than 200,000 people died of nuclear radiation, shock waves from the blasts and thermal radiation resulting from bombing of Hiroshima on 6 August 1945 and of Nagasaki three days later. Additionally, over 400,000 more people have died – and are continuing to die – since the end of the Second World War from the impacts of the two bombs.

Mr. Ban recalled his visit to Hiroshima five years ago, saying he will always carry the memories of meeting the survivors, witnessing the destruction and seeing the lingering effects.

“The courage of those who lived through this catastrophic, man-made tragedy was deeply inspiring. The hibakusha are more than survivors – they are unparalleled champions of peace. From their searing experiences, they have forged a message of hope that someday the world will be free of these indiscriminate and destabilizing weapons,” he stated.

“I pay tribute to the bravery of the hibakusha and renew my resolve to advance our common cause of achieving a safer and more peaceful world, free of the nuclear shadow.”

Noting that this year also marks the 70th anniversary of the UN, the Secretary-General recalled that the first resolution adopted by the General Assembly reflected the world’s concern about the use of atomic weapons.

“As you keep the memory of the bombing alive, so, too, must the international community persist until we have ensured that nuclear weapons are eliminated,” he stated.

“I echo your rallying cry: No more Hiroshimas. No more Nagasakis.”

The remains of the Prefectural Industry Promotion Building, later preserved as a monument – known as the Genbaku Dome – at the Hiroshima Peace Memorial. UN Photo

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Selwyn Manning, BCS (Hons.) MCS (Hons.) is an investigative political journalist with 23 years media experience. He specializes in reportage and analysis of socioeconomics, politics, foreign affairs, and security/intelligence issues. Selwyn has extensive experience as a commentator and has provided live political analysis to a wide range of television and radio organizations broadcasting in New Zealand, Australia and globally including the BBC (Five Live, London) and BBC (World Service). He is currently a correspondent to Australia's FiveAA radio, and is a regular live-on-air panelist on Radio New Zealand's The Panel with broadcaster Jim Mora.

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