JAPAN: This week, the Nagasaki-Hiroshima Peace Messengers visited UNI head office en route to UN, where they presented petition calling for a global ban on nuclear weapons.
The Nagasaki-Hiroshima Peace Messengers visited UNI Global Union head office in Nyon, Switzerland on their way to bringing a petition to the United Nations in Geneva calling for a world free of nuclear weapons. The youngsters from Japan supported by first, second and third generation survivors of the nuclear bombs dropped on Hiroshima and Nagasaki, have collected almost 2 million signatures on their petition.
Their harrowing presentations painted a vivid picture of the horrors of nuclear war. The peace messengers are working to ensure that Nagasaki is the last ever city subjected to the atomic bomb. They are the last generation who will hear first-hand the voices of the survivors.
The peace messengers have been visiting UNI head office annually for the past 13 years.
Welcoming the delegation to UNI, Deputy General Secretary Christy Hoffman said, “We fully support your timely message of peace and nuclear disarmament. With the current political situation between the US and North Korea, fears of a nuclear war have increased.”
“In these times, your message of peace offers hope that world leaders can see sense. Commitment and engagement from young people is essential if we are to achieve social justice, and we are honoured to host such passionate young activists at UNI Global Union.”
Tadako Kawazue, leading the delegation from Japan also noted the successes of the UN Treaty abolishing nuclear weapons. said, “The signing of the UN Treaty shows that we are turning a new page in history on nuclear abolition. Finally, the world is determined to move towards a world without nuclear arms.”
UNI staff also heard the moving testimony of Koyo Misumi, whose mother survived the atomic bomb whilst she was pregnant with him, only later to die from the effects of the radiation along with other members of his close family.
UNI is a member of ICAN, the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons and the IPB, the International Peace Bureau.