"The World and Japan" Database (Project Leader: TANAKA Akihiko)
Database of Japanese Politics and International Relations
National Graduate Institute for Policy Studies (GRIPS); Institute for Advanced Studies on Asia (IASA), The University of Tokyo

[Title] Remarks by H.E.Mr. Fumio Kishida, Minister for Foreign Affairs of Japan at the 61st Pugwash Conference on Science and World Affairs

[Place] Nagasaki
[Date] November 1, 2015
[Source] Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Japan
[Full text]

Ambassador Jayantha Dhanapala, President of the Pugwash Conference, Excellencies,

Distinguished guests,

Ladies and gentlemen,

First of all I would like to express my gratitude to President Dhanapala and those who have worked hard to make this conferencepossible.

The Pugwash Conference has a high standing for providing various meaningful discussions and recommendations on non-proliferation and early realization of elimination of nuclear weapons. Thus , holding of the Pugwash Conference in Nagasaki in thismilestone year of 70th year since the atomic bombing plays a very important role in renewing the determination towards a world free of nuclear weapons.

Nagasaki has achieved amazing modernization after World War II. Today, it is difficult to imagine that this place was full of ruins and debris. However, 70 years ago, atomic bombs were dropped here in Nagasaki and my hometown, in Hiroshima and took more than two hundred thousand precious lives in a blink of an eye. Those who had initially survived later developed health problems and many of them subsequently lost their lives.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

This morning, we have heard testimonies of an atomic bomb survivor, Hibakusha. We also visited the Peace Park, the Atomic Bomb Museum and Shiroyama Elementary School. Through these experiences, we have learned the reality of the consequence of the use of a nuclear weapon. I notice that there are Hibakushas attending here today. The average age of Hibakushas has become over 80. We cannot let the memories of their experiences fade away. We need to pass on their determination to achieve the total elimination across borders and generations.

As for Japan's policy on nuclear disarmament and non-proliferation, we consider it necessary to take a tangible and practical approach in light of the severe security situation and based on the recognition of the existing risks of nuclear weapons in front of us. And as a fundamental starting point, true understanding of humanitarian impact of nuclear weapons is necessary.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

Many politicians and experts from various countries are attending this conference. As Foreign Minister of Japan from a city devastated by an atomic bomb, sincerely wish that more leaders learn the reality of the consequence of the use of nuclear weapons, including those from the states that possess nuclear weapons. I will continue to call on world leaders to visit the cities devastated by the atomic bombings.

Japan has been playing a leading role in international efforts towards the world free of nuclear weapons as the only country to have ever suffered atomic bombings as well as the country which upholds the Three Non-Nuclear Principles. From September this year, Japan assumed a Co-Coordinatorship with Kazakhstan on facilitating the entry into force of the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-BanTreaty(CTBT). Furthermore,as a host country of G7, Japan holds a foreign ministers' meeting in Hiroshima next April. Through these opportunities, Japan will make its utmost efforts to realize a world free of nuclear weapons, calling upon both nuclear-weapon States and non nuclear-weapon States to work together.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

Unfortunately, we failed to adopt the final document in the 2015 NPT Review Conference held in May this year, which left us without future guidelines for nuclear disarmament and non-proliferation. However, we will never fail to make efforts to realize a world free from nuclear weapons.

Recently, Japan has submitted a draft resolution entitled "United action with renewed determination towards the total elimination of nuclear weapons" to the1st Committee of the United Nations General Assembly. In this milestone year of 70th year since the drop of atomic bombs, this draft resolution calls upon all States towork together with renewed determination towards our goal by steadily building up tangible and practical measures . The draft resolution is scheduled to be adopted tomorrow at the earliest and we believe that its adoption will enhance momentum to realize a world free of nuclear weapons.

What we need to do now is to make further efforts to strengthen the NPT regime so that the next NPT Review Conference in 2020 will be a success. Japan is determined to continue to make utmost efforts in this regard.

Ladies and gentlemen,

In addition to the70th year after the atomic bombings, this year marks the 60th anniversary of Russell–Einstein Manifesto and the 20th anniversary of the Pugwash Conference winning the Nobel Peace Prize.

This morning, the Pugwash Conference donated a Nobel Peace Prize medal replica to Nagasaki and Hiroshima to honour the efforts of the cities and Hibakushas. It is my pleasure that both cities' efforts were honoured by the international community. Holding such an auspicious ceremony at this remarkable year would contribute to further advanc ing a momentum of nuclear disarmamentand non -proliferation.

One Hibakusha said,and I quote, "the threat of nuclear weapons, created by the wisdom of mankind, is a serious issue of human survival that cannot be ignored even for a day," unquote. I believe that this issue can be solved by the wisdom of mankind one day in the future.

In Russell–Einstein Manifesto, many well-known scientists, including Dr. Hideki Yukawa, Nobel PrizeLaureate in Physics, described responsibilities of scientistsand citizens for achieving peace.

"There lies before us, if we choose, continual progress in happiness, knowledge, and wisdom." We have conquered many difficulties through development in science. I strongly believe that we will also be able to conquer difficulties which we face in disarmament and non-proliferation. I hope sincerely, all of you, scientists and experts who are involved in nuclear disarmament and non-proliferation will make the discussion of this conference fruitful towards a world free from nuclear weapons and "continuous progress in happiness, knowledge andwisdom".

I wish you meaningful discussions in the coming five days which will eventually bear fruits by sending successful outcome from here, Nagasaki, to the world.

Thank you very much.