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Prime Minister Attends Hiroshima Peace Memorial Ceremony
Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi attended the annual Hiroshima Peace Memorial Ceremony held in Peace Memorial Park in Hiroshima City.
Approximately 45,000 people including atomic bomb victims and bereaved family members attended the ceremony marking the 61st anniversary of the atomic bombing. Mr. Tadatoshi Akiba, the Mayor of Hiroshima City, and the representatives of the bereaved family members added the names of people recognized as atomic bomb victims in the past year to the cenotaph and, furthermore, the participants led by the representatives of the bereaved family members, the children, the atomic bomb victims, and Prime Minister Koizumi offered flowers. Afterwards, the Peace Bell was rung by a representative of the bereaved family members and a child representative at 8:15 a.m., when the atomic bomb was dropped, and the participants offered a minute of silent prayer.
Following Mayor Akiba's Peace Declaration, the child representatives read the Promise for Peace.
Prime Minister Koizumi delivered an address, in which he stated, "As the only country ever to have experienced nuclear devastation, Japan has a responsibility to convey its experience to the international community. In the 61 years since the end of the Second World War, Japan has embodied and implemented its pledge not to engage in war, based on its commitment not to repeat the tragedy of Hiroshima and Nagasaki anywhere else." "I renew my pledge that Japan will continue to lead the international community for the total elimination of nuclear weapons and the realization of a permanent peace, observing the peace clause in its Constitution and firmly maintaining the Three Non-Nuclear Principles."
Related Link: Address by Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi at the Hiroshima Peace Ceremony
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