Letter to the Governments of the USA and the UK, the NATO Headquarters, and the United Nations:

We Call for a Ban on Use of Depleted Uranium Shells

January 13, 2001
Japan Council against Atomic & Hydrogen Bombs

Dear Sirs,

     As an anti-nuclear peace movement representing the Japanese people, who suffered the damage from the bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, we are deeply concerned about the reports that many people are suffering from leukemia and other problems inferred as having been caused by the depleted uranium shells in and around Kosovo, where DU shells were massively used in the NATO bombing over Yugoslavia in Spring 1999.

     The DU shells had been massively used by the US forces during the Gulf War in 1991, and high incidence of radiation diseases among not only Iraqi residents but also US military personnel who took part in the war operation developed into a serious issue.  Nevertheless, the US and its allies again massively used DU weapons in Bosnia and Herzegovina, and then in Kosovo.  The US has even sold a large number of DU weapons to other allied countries, encouraging them to use these weapons.

     As known, the DU weapons, albeit they are not in the category of nuclear weapons that produce explosive energy by nuclear fission or fusion, have been warned from early days that they cause serious, anti-human radiation effects directly and through environmental contamination.  The responsibility of the NATO, and the US and the UK in particular, who continued to use the DU weapons in spite of their position to know about their anti-human nature, is very heavy.

     We of the Japan Council against Atomic and Hydrogen Bombs, on behalf of the Japanese people, who suffered the tragedy of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, file a strong protest against NATO, and particularly the Governments of the USA and the UK, who keep trying to justify the use of DU weapons, and urge NATO and the Governments of all its member states not to use nor to deploy DU weapons.  We demand that they should conduct a thorough investigation on the damage by the DU weapons used in all the conflicts in which NATO was involved since the outbreak of the Gulf War, and make public the outcome of the investigation.

     We also request that the United Nations Organization will make an inquiry into the damage caused by DU weapons, and that it will take the initiative in enacting international rule banning the military use of depleted uranium.

Letter to the Japanese Government On the Problem of Depleted Uranium Weapons

January 13, 2001
The Japan Council against A and H Bombs

     The news reports about a heavy human damage, including the cases of leukemia, and environmental destruction caused in Kosovo and other areas by depleted uranium shells, massively used by NATO forces during the bombing over Yugoslavia, are eliciting serious concern internationally, and even among NATO member states.

     The danger for depleted uranium to cause such damage, if used for military purpose, has long been pointed out by many experts.  In fact, in Iraq and even among the military personnel of the NATO side who handled DU weapons during the Gulf War in 1991, symptoms arising from the exposure to radiation later developed.  This became known as the "Gulf Syndrome".

     We have already demanded from NATO and all its member states that they should immediately stop deploying and using DU weapons.  We also requested UN that it take the initiative in enacting international law banning the military use of depleted uranium.

     At the same time, we are concerned that along with the other nuclear weapons states, the USA has produced massive DU weapons and deployed them for the US forces operating worldwide.  It has deployed DU weapons in the territories of other countries and has even exported to its allies.

     In consideration of the desire of Japanese people, who suffered the tragedy of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, we urge the Japanese Government:

     1. To make a thorough investigation on the bringing, deployment and/or actual use in military practices of DU weapons by the US forces in Japan and release its outcome, and;

     2. To urge the US Administration to stop once for all the deployment or use of DU weapons; and to demand that it should remove all DU weapons from Japan, if already brought in at all.

Top Page