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2020 World Conference against A and H Bombs (online)

Call for Participation in and Support for the 2020 World Conference against Atomic and Hydrogen Bombs

February 17, 2020
The 85th General Assembly, Organizing Committee of the World Conference against A and H Bombs

From August 2 to 9 of this 75th year of the atomic bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, we are going to convene the 2020 World Conference against A and H Bombs with the theme: “Together with the Hibakusha - For a Nuclear Weapon-Free, Peaceful and Just World”.

Against the backdrop of prevailing actions of citizens and youths to seek the prohibition of nuclear weapons and defend peace and global environment in defiance of the superpowers’ outrages, the World Conference will be a significant gathering in linking the task of eliminating nuclear weapons with a broad range of people’s demands and opening the way for a future with the power of spreading cooperation nationally and internationally. We cordially request all of you, both in Japan and across the world, to support our call, prepare for participation in or send your representatives to the World Conference. We also call on you to carry out diverse and creative activities in solidarity with the World Conference in your cities, regions and countries.

Also, in the light of the footsteps of the World Conference that started in 1955, this year’s Conference has a historic significance.

Nuclear superpowers, in neglect of a number of agreements achieved, including the rules of peace established in the U.N. Charter and the “unequivocal undertaking” to eliminate nuclear weapons they themselves accepted in the past, are continuing outrageous actions, such as the development and deployment of new type of nuclear weapons and unilateral withdrawal from disarmament treaties.

However, the elimination of nuclear weapons was a goal set by the world as the starting point of the new era out of the scourge of the two world wars in the 20th century, and now it has developed to be a major global trend which can no longer be reversed.

In 2017, the U.N. adopted the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons. Despite the opposition and pressure from nuclear superpowers, 81 countries have signed and 35 of them ratified the treaty. At the U.N. General Assembly last December, 123 countries - close to two-thirds of the U.N. member states, voted in favor of the resolution calling for the promotion of the TPNW.

In April this year, on the eve of the 2020 NPT Review Conference, by the cooperation of anti-nuclear peace movements and a broad range of movements for other causes, we are going to convene the World Conference against A and H Bombs in New York, with the theme: “Abolish Nuclear Weapons; Resist and Reverse the Climate Crisis; For Social and Economic Justice”. We have been encouraged by the fact that the three major organizations representing the Japanese movement against A & H Bombs -- Hidankyo, Gensuikin and Gensuikyo (*) - are among the co-sponsoring organizations to hold the event.

Upholding the prevention of nuclear war, the prohibition and elimination of nuclear weapons and relief for and solidarity with the Hibakusha as its key commitments, the conference will accelerate the current towards the entry into force of the TPNW and provide a rallying point of the world opinions to press nuclear weapon states to implement their past agreements and promises related to Article 6 of the NPT and the abolition of nuclear weapons, including the cessation of nuclear arms race and the elimination of their nuclear arsenals. It will also be a major forum for nuclear abolition movement to join and work in solidarity with diverse efforts to save the planet and achieve social and economic justice and gender equality.

In achieving a world free of nuclear weapons, many people in the world are looking to the Japanese civil society and movement, while the Japanese government’s attitude of subordinating itself to the U.S, nuclear strategy, trampling the Constitution and the people’s aspiration under foot, has disappointed them. Because, more than 10 million people and 70% of local mayors have already signed the petition in support of the “Appeal of the Hibakusha” for the elimination of nuclear weapons and in a public poll, 65.9% of respondents answered that Japan should join the TPNW. This means that a majority of citizens in Japan want their government to accede to the treaty. We must build on and spread this public support to the cause and achieve a Japan that will take the lead in securing the entry into force of the TPNW.

We are going to bring together all these movements to the 2020 World Conference and will make it a great success together with the Hibakusha to open the path toward a nuclear weapon-free world.

In all communities throughout the country, we will further promote the Hibakusha Appeal international signature campaign, hold successful March 1 Bikini Day events, the World Conference-NY in April and the Nationwide Peace March starting in May. In each of these undertakings, we will strengthen cooperation and solidarity with a broad range of people’s movements. Based on these efforts, let us achieve a big success of the 2020 World Conference against A and H Bombs in August with the participation of delegates from workplaces, local communities and school campuses across Japan and the world.

*Hidankyo = Japan Confederation of A-and H-Bomb Sufferers Organizations; Gensuikin = Japan Congress against A and H Bombs; Gensuikyo = Japan Council against A and H Bombs

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