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Protest letter against the US subcritical nuclear test (March 26, 1998)

March 26, 1998

The Honorable William Jefferson Clinton
The President
The White House
Washington, D.C. 20500
The United States of America

His Excellency Dr. Thomas Stephen Foley
Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary
of the United States of America
Embassy of the United States of America in Japan

Letter of Protest

On behalf of the citizens of Hiroshima, I adamantly protest your country's willful execution of a third sub-critical nuclear test, despite the countless calls for immediate suspension of testing by this city, A-bomb survivor organizations, and many other groups.

Your stance of continuing testing on the basis of the assertion that these tests are necessary to ensure the stockpile and do not involve nuclear explosions reinforces the existing structure of nuclear weapons possession and heightens the suspicions of the international community. In India's key policy agreement, the coalition government's national agenda for governance which was issued the other day, Prime Minister Vajpayee indicated that the country would "reevaluate the nuclear policy and exercise our option to induct nuclear weapons." Pakistan has countered that it will reconsider its nuclear policy. These expressions of distrust in the nuclear powers will increase the danger of nuclear proliferation and affect the early effectuation of the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty (CTBT).

It is imperative that your country sincerely heed the international movement for a world without nuclear weapons and immediately cease sub-critical nuclear testing. The nuclear powers must recognize their duty to work actively toward nuclear disarmament, as they promised to do in the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT). They must also strive to build relationships of trust within the international community that will maintain national security without relying on nuclear weapons.

Takashi Hiraoka
Mayor of Hiroshima


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