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Nagasaki marks 77th anniversary of US nuclear attack

At the ceremony marking the 77th anniversary of the US atom bombing of Nagasaki, the mayor called for the elimination of nuclear weapons, Kyodo news agency reported, as concerns rise over the possible use of such weapons in the wake of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

The memory of the victims was honoured with a moment of silence at the same time the US military dropped the “Fat Man” atomic bomb on Nagasaki on August 9, 1945. The explosion killed approximately 74,000 people as a result of injuries or radiation sickness and destroyed a large part of the city.

77 years ago, the United States dropped two atomic bombs on Japan. The 1st bomb was dropped on #Hiroshima on August 6, 1945 and the 2nd bomb was dropped on #Nagasaki on August 9, 1945. In the only use of nuclear weapons in armed conflict, the U.S. killed 129,000-225,000 people.

— Be A King (@BerniceKing) August 7, 2022

A world without nuclear weapons

In a speech at the Peace Park in Nagasaki, Mayor Tomihisa Taue called on the nuclear powers to come up with a concrete plan for nuclear disarmament. He also demanded that the Japanese government sign a treaty banning nuclear weapons and proposed the creation of a zone without such weapons in Northeast Asia.

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The Japanese authorities have ruled out signing a nuclear weapons ban treaty, as have other countries under the so-called US nuclear umbrella, i.e. the promise of a nuclear response in the event of an attack with such weapons on those countries. Some US allies, however, attended the first meeting of the signatories as observers, Kyodo points out.

Russia reminding the world of the possibility of nuclear warfare

UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres, in a message read by a representative of the organisation at the Nagasaki ceremony, referred to Russia’s ongoing war against Ukraine. He warned that the nuclear conflict was once again in the realm of possibility and that the Russian invasion of Ukraine reminded people around the world of the possibility of annihilation within minutes.

It's been 77 years since a mushroom cloud swelled above Nagasaki.

Once again, humanity is playing with a loaded gun.

Eliminating nuclear weapons is the only guarantee they will never be used again.

— António Guterres (@antonioguterres) August 8, 2022

The Japanese news agency stated that after launching the invasion of Ukraine, Russian President Vladimir Putin put the nuclear deterrent force on combat alert, raising fears that nuclear weapons could be used in war for the first time since 1945.

Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida stated that transparency, continuous reduction of nuclear weapons and non-proliferation remain important tasks. He added that even in the face of a difficult security situation, we must continue our constraint in using nuclear weapons and continue to make Nagasaki the last place where the atomic bomb was dropped .

Today, we reflect on the anniversaries of the atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki and on the devastation that nuclear weapons bring. We reaffirm that a nuclear war can never be won and must never be fought.

— Secretary Antony Blinken (@SecBlinken) August 9, 2022

Three days before the attack on Nagasaki, the US military dropped an atomic bomb on Hiroshima, where 140,000 people died. These were the only two nuclear bombs used in world warfare. Shortly after the attack on Nagasaki, Japan surrendered, ending World War II in Asia.

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