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Article ID:1000009701Updated on:2020年3月2日更新印刷ページ表示

Peace Declaration (1981)

"Let all the souls here rest in peace; For we shall not repeat the evil." These words compose the pledge we have dedicated to the A-bomb victims. In it, we also appeal for the abolition of nuclear weapons and the renunciation of war.

However, the nuclear powers, with the United States and the Soviet Union in the forefront, continue an ever-expanding arms race which serves only to strengthen their rivalry. Consequently, mankind today is confronted with the real possibility of self-extinction.

Pope John Paul II, comprehending this danger and potential tragedy, stood on this very spot last February and made an appeal to the entire world. He observed that to remember the past is to commit oneself to the future. In particular, he emphasized that to remember Hiroshima is to abhor nuclear war and to commit oneself to peace. Above all, Pope John Paul II stressed that peace always must be pursued and protected.

In spite of the common sense of such appeals, nuclear weapons are becoming increasingly sophisticated and diversified. They are ready to be deployed on the ground, in the air and at sea. Such weapons, ready at any time, lead to dangerous confrontations between nations. They possess unbelievable powers of destruction, powers estimated to be approximately one-and-one-half million times as great as the atomic bomb dropped on Hiroshima. Thus, each and every day, we all are threatened by this "Balance of Terror." This danger is aggravated by the increasing possibility of one side mounting a preemptive strike against the other in an attempt to break this precarious balance. It is obvious that when a nuclear war begins, no one will survive.

The possession of nuclear weapons can no longer guarantee the security of the human race. Only total nuclear disarmament can guarantee security and thus pave the way for peace. We must recognize this truth.

Thus it is time for all of us to look at this issue from a global viewpoint, giving the highest priority to the survival of the human race. Only then will it be possible to overcome confrontations between ideas, creeds, and political systems and build a path towards a peace based on cooperation and interdependence.

In the forthcoming Second Special Session of the United Nations General Assembly devoted to Disarmament, all Member States should show the deepest respect for this spirit. On the initiative of the nuclear powers, a specific agreement should be reached which will lead to the total abolition of nuclear weapons and eventual complete disarmament. For example, a prohibition on the use of nuclear arms, expansion of the nuclear-free zone and a total ban on nuclear tests are measures that should be carried out immediately. As citizens of a peace-loving nation we sincerely hope that our government will take the lead in these peace efforts, while maintaining its commitment to the three anti-nuclear principles.

Today, on August sixth, the thirty-sixth anniversary of the atomic bombing, we, the citizens of Hiroshima, pray devoutly in tribute to the souls of the A-bomb victims. We are, more than ever, fully aware of our responsibility and devotion to peace. We express our desire for expanded and strengthened relief measures for survivors and their bereaved families on the basis of national indemnity. Thus, we hereby make a strong appeal to the whole world to continue to work for peace.

August 6, 1981

Takeshi Araki
Mayor
The City of Hiroshima


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