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information about Fukushima published in English in Japanese media info publiée en anglais dans la presse japonaise

UN new working group on nukes ban

February 23, 2016

UN launches working group on nuclear abolishment

http://www3.nhk.or.jp/nhkworld/en/news/20160223_07/

The United Nations has launched a working group to discuss the possibility of a legal ban on nuclear weapons.

The proposal to establish the group was approved by the General Assembly in December of last year.

On Monday, the working group opened a 5-day meeting in Geneva, with representatives from more than 90 countries taking part. But all nuclear powers were absent.

At the beginning of the meeting, former UN Secretary General Kofi Annan expressed concern over what he calls a worsening situation.

Annan said that there has been little progress in nuclear disarmament since the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty went into effect more than 45 years ago.

He said that nuclear warheads have been deployed all over the world, and that nuclear powers have modernized their nuclear arsenals.

Annan added that he expects the new working group will make a breakthrough in discussions on reducing nuclear weapons.

Japan's disarmament ambassador Toshio Sano said that the abolishment of nuclear arms is a strong desire of the country, which is the only one to have suffered atomic bombings.

He said that efforts toward the goal will need involvement of nuclear powers to have real effect.

Toshiki Fujimori, a representative of an organization of atomic bombing survivors, also made an address.

Fujimori experienced the atomic bombing in Hiroshima at the age of one. He said that the suffering of Japanese survivors should not be experienced again by people in other countries.

The working group plans to hold 2 more meetings through August, and submit a report to the UN General Assembly in September.

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