• Kyodo

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Government officials said they will continue to seek support at international gatherings for Japan’s proposal that world leaders visit Hiroshima and Nagasaki after a U.N. nuclear disarmament conference ended last week without issuing a consensus document.

During the month-long Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty review conference in New York, Japan sought to include in the outcome document a reference to Tokyo’s invitation to world leaders to visit the two atomic-bombed cities to raise awareness of the catastrophic consequences of using nuclear weapons.

But the proposal was watered down in the face of opposition from China, which said Tokyo was trying to portray itself as a war victim.

The final draft contained more vague wording, but the matter became moot when the conference ended without issuing any outcome document as a result of disagreement over another contentious point.

A senior Foreign Ministry official said Monday that Japan will “continue to make the arguments” for visits to the cities at related meetings this year.

Among the upcoming meetings is a gathering in August in Hiroshima of eminent persons who want the Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty put into force.

Then in September, Japan and Kazakhstan will jointly host a meeting on bringing the CTBT into force.

And in November, the 61st Pugwash Conference on Science and World Affairs, an international organization of scientists and others dedicated to eliminating nuclear arms, will be held in Nagasaki.

Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga told a news conference Monday that Japan will continue to cooperate with other NPT members so that the latest result “will not adversely affect global efforts toward achieving a world without nuclear weapons.”

The final draft of the NPT review conference touched on the importance of “interactions with and directly sharing the experiences of the people and the communities affected by nuclear weapons,” without directly referring to Hiroshima and Nagasaki.

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