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Please support our new signature campaign

“Appeal for a Total Ban on Nuclear Weapons”

Dear friends,

At the start of the New Year, we would like to extend our heartfelt gratitude to you for your continued understanding of and cooperation with our movement.

In order for the current worldwide momentum for the abolition of nuclear weapons to develop further and bear fruit, we are planning to launch a new signature campaign in February 2011, calling on all the governments of the world to take action to totally ban nuclear weapons.

In May last year, the Review Conference of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT), in which 189 States took part, agreed on the Final Document aiming to “achieve peace and security of a world without nuclear weapons” and urged all governments to make special efforts to establish the necessary “framework” to reach this goal. This was followed by the visit of U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki-moon to Hiroshima and Nagasaki, who called for achieving a “world without nuclear weapons” in the lifetime of the Hibakusha in his speech at the Peace Memorial Ceremony of Hiroshima on August 6.

On the other hand, we continue to witness attempts by some to justify the use or threat of nuclear weapons in the name of “deterrence” or the “nuclear umbrella”, and the danger of nuclear proliferation by others who, in response to these attempts, seek to develop nuclear weapons of their own.

However, as the experiences of Hiroshima and Nagasaki demonstrate, human survival and security cannot be ensured by nuclear weapons. The only sure way to prevent the use of nuclear weapons is to abolish all nuclear weapons, as confirmed by the NPT Review Conference.

Through the new signature campaign, we, anti-nuclear movement from the only nation to have suffered the A-bomb devastation, will urge that the tragedy of Hiroshima and Nagasaki never be repeated, and call on the governments of all states to build on the past agreements made in the international arena to take the bold course of starting negotiations for a treaty totally banning all nuclear weapons.

We plan to announce the launch of this signature campaign imultaneously in Hiroshima and Nagasaki on February 15, and in cooperation with all the people who support this initiative, we aim to insure that this demand is reflected in public opinion nationwide, and that it goes on to gain broad support internationally. The text of the signature campaign, “Appeal for a total ban on nuclear weapons” is attached at the end of this letter.

Please have a read through the appeal, and send your endorsement, and if possible your message, to us by post, fax or email. The list and messages of the initial endorsers is to be announced together with the launch of the signature campaign on February 15. We are convinced that your endorsement will help bring a great deal of support internationally.

This signature campaign will be promoted in solidarity with all the campaigns sharing the same goal of eliminating nuclear weapons, including the Mayors for Peace signature campaign led by the cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki and the “International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons (ICAN)”. Starting with the signature campaign in the wake of the Bikini hydrogen bomb test of March 1954, the anti-A and H-Bomb movement of Japan has, through massive signature drives, been at the forefront in bringing about the coalescence of public opinion calling for a total ban on and elimination of nuclear weapons. This new signature campaign will carry forward this tradition and help ensure the achievement of a nuclear weapon-free world.

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