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Speeches and Statements by Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi

(Provisional Translation)

Address by Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi at the Hiroshima Memorial Service for the Hiroshima Peace Memorial Ceremony

Here today, on the occasion of the Hiroshima Peace Memorial Ceremony marking the 58th anniversary of the atomic bombing of Hiroshima, I reverently pay sincere tribute to the souls of the atomic bomb victims. Furthermore, I express my heartfelt sympathy for those suffering from the after-effects of the atomic bomb.

As the only nation in human history to be bombed with atomic weapons, Japan has complied with its peace constitution and firmly maintained the Three Non-Nuclear Principles, with its strong commitment not to repeat the tragedy of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. Japan will continue to pursue this stance, and lead the international community to promote nuclear disarmament and nuclear non-proliferation and devote itself to abolish nuclear weapons through its enhancement of efforts to call on governments for early ratification of the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty (CTBT).

With regard to the atomic bomb victims, I have been working to enhance comprehensive support measures spanning health care, medical treatment and welfare. The Government of Japan has recently taken assistance measures to provide assistance for travel expenses for the atomic bomb victims living abroad to come to Japan to receive medical treatment, as well as to renew measures to ensure that those people who have been approved for the allowances can continue to receive the service even after leaving Japan. I will continue to work sincerely to promote support measures by facing the reality of the aging victims of the atomic bomb.

After the war, Hiroshima witnessed great development as an international city of peace and culture. I would like to express my deepest respect to the countless people who consistently poured their energies into the reconstruction of Hiroshima. The desire of the citizens of Hiroshima in their post-war efforts towards the realization of world peace has been firmly planted along with the name of "Hiroshima" in the hearts and minds of the people of the world. "Hiroshima" has become a symbol of world peace and many people visit the city every year. I sincerely wish that Hiroshima would continue to be a city that attracts many people who are pursuing peace. @

I would like to conclude my address by offering my heartfelt prayer for the repose of the atomic bomb victims' souls and my best wishes for the future to the atomic bomb survivors and the bereaved families, and for the further prosperity of the City of Hiroshima.

August 6, 2003

Junichiro Koizumi
Prime Minister of Japan