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Biden calls for a world free of nuclear weapons

by Magali Alvarez
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U.S. President Joe Biden pledged to strive for a world free of nuclear weapons in a written message at the Hiroshima Atomic Bomb Museum.

The G7 leaders went to the Hiroshima (western Japan) Peace Museum and Park on Friday in a historic visit aimed at sending a strong message against nuclear weapons, and where they met with a survivor and signed the guestbook.

“May the stories in this Museum remind us all of our obligations to build a future of peace. Together, let us keep moving toward the day when we can finally and forever rid the world of nuclear weapons – keep the faith!” wrote Biden.

The U.S. president, who was three years old when the U.S. dropped a nuclear bomb on Hiroshima, yesterday became the second head of the world’s leading economy to visit this museum, after then-President Barack Obama did the same in 2016.

The leaders of other nuclear powers, such as France and the United Kingdom, also left messages in this book, and expressed good wishes towards the victims of the atomic bombing, although in a more veiled way than Washington.

“With emotion and compassion, it is incumbent upon us to contribute to the duty to remember the victims of Hiroshima and to act for peace, the only struggle that deserves to be fought,” said Emmanuel Macron, President of France.

Rishi Sunak, British Prime Minister, quoted Shakespeare and noted that “language fails in the light of the flash of the bomb. There are no words to describe the horror and suffering of the people of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. But what we can say, with all our heart and soul, no longer exists.”

The leaders of Japan, Germany, Canada, France, Italy, the United Kingdom and the United States took part in this visit before the formal start of the 49th summit of the Group of Seven that is being held from May 19 to 21 in the Japanese city, the first to be attacked with an atomic bomb.

During the visit to the museum, which according to local media lasted between 30 and 40 minutes, the leaders met with a “hibakusha”, survivor, from Hiroshima, a meeting whose content has not yet been revealed.

Hiroshima was devastated on August 6, 1945, when the Enola Gay aircraft dropped the first nuclear bomb used in actual combat, dubbed “Little Boy,” on the city, precipitating Japan’s surrender and the end of World War II.

This bomb immediately killed some 80,000 people, about 30 percent of the population at the time. By the end of 1945, the death toll had risen to 140,000, and in the following years the number of victims from the effects of radiation more than doubled.

TYT Newsroom

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