2010 World Conference against A and H Bombs
2010 World Conference against A and H Bombs
Address of the Organizer
Committee of Chairpersons, Organizing Committee of the World Conference
On behalf of the Organizing Committee, I would like to extend my heartfelt greetings of welcome and of solidarity to you who have come from abroad and from all over Japan to assemble at the 2010 World Conference against A and H Bombs.
The 2010 NPT Review Conference was held at a time when the dynamics for a world without nuclear weapons have been stronger. It adopted a final document reaffirming the gunequivocal undertakingh made in 2000 by nuclear weapons states to eliminate their nuclear arsenals, marking a step forward toward a world without nuclear weapons. We now see more clearly than ever what we should do to realize a world without nuclear weapons, building on the process and achievements of the NPT Review Conference.
The World Conference is honored to have the participation of the representatives of the United Nations Organization and national governments who played significant roles in the Review Conference. We also have among us the leaders of the peace movements, dedicated grassroots activists, Hibakusha and other nuclear victims who successfully organized the gInternational Action Day for a Nuclear-Weapon Free World in New Yorkh and worked on the Review Conference to incorporate proposals of civil society, some of which were in fact confirmed in the final document. We also have with us many of those who worked hard in Japan and in New York to collect signatures for ga World without Nuclear Weaponsh proposed by the World Conference two year ago.
Pressing for Negotiations on a Nuclear Weapons Convention for Achieving a World without Nuclear Weapons
The atomic bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki created a ghell on earthh beyond description. In April last year, U.S. President Barack Obama stated: gas the only nuclear power to have used a nuclear weapon, the United States has a moral responsibility to acth. In the light of the realities of the atomic bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, it is evident that the moral responsibility means the responsibility for having committed an inhumane mass destruction against international humanitarian law.
I think that the United States should be also held responsible for bringing about an era of the nuclear arms race and the nuclear threat. Historians have made clear based on a series of facts that the prime objective of the atomic bombing was to blackmail the Soviet Union. As a result, a cold war broke out between the U.S. and the U.S.S.R., bringing in an era for world domination by military power backed by nuclear weapons. The moral responsibility to all humanity also for this problem must be questioned.
The President Obama in his Prague speech also said, hAs long as nuclear weapons exist, the U.S. will maintain a safe, secure and effective arsenal to deter any adversary, and guarantee that defense to our allies.h This means that the U.S. president stands for nuclear deterrence and extended deterrence by the threat of nuclear weapons. This U.S. position was confirmed by the gU.S. Nuclear Posture Reviewh made public in last April. This is also the reason why the nuclear weapons states including the U.S., Russia, the U.K. and France resisted in the Review Conference setting any time frame for starting negotiations for a Nuclear Weapons Convention.
This reminded me of the gYukawa-Tomonaga Declaration--eBeyond nuclear deterrencefh issued in 1975 that stated: gusing nuclear weapons as a tool of war and intimidation is the biggest crime against humanity.h If you threaten a country with nuclear weapons, that country will try to resist to the threat by developing its own nuclear weapons. In fact, history has shown us that nuclear deterrence is not only immoral but induced nuclear proliferation. The 2010 NPT Review Conference not only made a step forward to the goal of a world without nuclear weapons; but faced with resistance by the nuclear weapon states, it underscored the need and significance for defeating the nuclear deterrence logic. At the same time, in the light of President Obamafs statement reaffirming the U.S. policy to maintain a secure and effective arsenal as long as nuclear weapons exist, logically speaking, there is no other way but to start negotiations for a Nuclear Weapons Convention for achieving a world without nuclear weapons.
The 2010 NPT final document calls on the nuclear weapons states to report to the next Prepcom Conference in 2014 about their efforts to be achieved for seven items, including systematic reductions in all types of nuclear weapons, and reductions in their roles and in the risk of their use, etc. Based on the evaluation of these achievements, we must press even more strongly for starting negotiations on a Nuclear Weapons Convention.
For Achieving a Japan Free of U.S. gNuclear Umbrellah
The successive Japanese governments, while claiming that Japanfs national policy is
gnot to possess, manufacture, or allow nuclear weapons to be brought into Japan,h namely the Three Non-nuclear Principles, concluded secret nuclear agreements with the U.S. and have been asking the U.S. to provide its gnuclear umbrella.h But the former ruling parties were at last defeated in last yearfs general election and a new government led by the Democratic Party of Japan came to power. The new prime minister, right after taking office, spoke at the UN Security Council and said, gJapan will take the lead in eliminating nuclear weapons and git will maintain the Three Non-Nuclear Principles.h The foreign minister made public the secret nuclear agreements but did not scrap them, and Japan continues to maintain the policy to rely on U.S. nuclear deterrence.
The prime minister stepped down without honoring his election promise to remove the U.S. Futenma Base outside Okinawa. The new Prime Minister Kan, making an excuse that he now understood the U.S. Marines constituted a deterrent after having studied the question, and succeeded to the same old policy. As a result, the Japanese government, in contrast to Hibakusha and the citizensf movements, could not make any contribution to the NPT Review this time. It uses North Korean nuclear missile development and the lack of transparency in Chinese arsenals for the pretext of its dependency on extended deterrence, but it deliberately overlooks the fact that U.S. nuclear deterrence is inducing North Korean nuclear development and Chinafs military buildup. In order to develop the peace framework in East Asia, it is essential that Japan breaks away from the U.S. nuclear umbrella and makes the best possible efforts to establish a government that will abide by and implement Article 9 of the Constitution as well as the Three Non-nuclear Principles. Once such a government is in place, then Japan, working together with its people including Hibakusha will be able to take the initiative in eliminating nuclear weapons from the face of the world.
The 2010 NPT Review Conference final document, with the U.S. and Iran agreeing, included the holding of ga conference in 2012, to be attended by all States of the Middle East on the establishment of a Middle East zone free of nuclear weapons and all other weapons of mass destruction.h Israel, not a party to the NPT treaty, is not likely to agree soon to attend the conference, but if it persists in refusing to participate, it will be further isolated in the Middle East and the rest of the world.
Dissemination of knowledge about the realities of atomic bombing
As seen in the NPT Review Conference, the driving force for creating a nuclear-weapons-free world is the call of Hibakusha, gDo not create any more Hibakusha.h To defeat the nuclear deterrence theory, it is important to disseminate the realities about atomic bombing and show that threatening with nuclear weapons constitutes a crime.
Hibakushafs collective lawsuits fought to have the government acknowledge that the diseases they are suffering from are caused by A-bomb have so far won 25 judgments in their favor, including five in the high courts, with the exception of only one judgment against. It has become evident through these lawsuits that the effect of internal exposure to residual radiation generated by the use of nuclear weapons are far more serious than it has been thought of. This is a problem common to all victims of nuclear testing around the world. 1000 people including British veterans who participated in nuclear testing in Australia and the South Pacific and their families have filed a lawsuit against the British government, but it has refused to recognize the existence of consequences of exposure to radioactive fallout. This is to do with the fact that the international standards for radiation protection considerably underestimates the effect of internal exposure. I believe that we, in solidarity with victims of nuclear testing, should hold nuclear weapons states morally responsible for having denied the effects of exposure to residual radiation and covered up the gravity of damage by internal exposure.
In concluding, let me express my high expectation that we, assembled in this Conference, building on the positive outcome of this yearfs NPT Review Conference, will continue to give full play to our strength by having rich and creative discussions and propose concrete ways to advance further toward a peaceful and just world without nuclear weapons.