• Kyodo, JIJI


The mayors of Hiroshima and Nagasaki will attend next month’s Nobel Peace Prize ceremony, at which the award will be given to a group that campaigned for a landmark treaty banning nuclear weapons, according to officials from the cities.

Hiroshima’s Kazumi Matsui has been invited to the Dec. 10 ceremony in Oslo, Norway, along with Nagasaki’s Tomihisa Taue.

The International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons, a Geneva-based coalition of nongovernmental organizations in 100 countries, including Japan, will be awarded the prize for its work toward the U.N. treaty’s adoption in July.

Matsui gave a speech at the start of the second round of treaty talks in New York in June, saying that “the earnest wish” of atomic bomb survivors, known as hibakusha, is “to witness the prohibition of nuclear weapons in their lifetime.”

“I’ll attend the ceremony representing hibakusha and the city that suffered the atomic bombing, to help the treaty become an international norm by showing the world our support for it,” Taue said at a news conference on Monday.

Other participants from Japan will include Terumi Tanaka, 85, co-chairman of the Japan Confederation of A- and H-Bomb Sufferers Organizations, or Nihon Hidankyo, on behalf of fellow survivors.

Japan skipped the treaty negotiations, as did the world’s nuclear armed countries and others who rely on the deterrence provided by the U.S. nuclear umbrella.

Japan remains the only country to have been attacked with nuclear weapons. The U.S. bombings 72 years ago targeted Hiroshima on Aug. 6, 1945, and of Nagasaki three days later.

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