Tokyo Bar Association

President's Discourse on the 76th Hiroshima-Nagasaki Peace Memorial Day


August 6, 2021
Kimitoshi Yabuki
President, Tokyo Bar Association

On the occasion of the 76th Hiroshima-Nagasaki Peace Memorial Day, I hereby reiterate my condolences to the victims and pledge that we will continue our efforts toward the elimination of nuclear weapons. War destroys not only human life but all its values, and its damage is not limited to physical ones. It leaves deep scars on the mind and body of people. In particular, we should say that nuclear weapons are at the opposite end of peace in that they possess enormous and inhumane destructive power. After the atomic bombs were dropped in Hiroshima on August 6, 1945 and in Nagasaki on August 9, our country aimed at the elimination of nuclear weapons, aiming to be the only country exposed to the bomb in the war, with a view to respecting the Constitution for peace.

The Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons adopted by the United Nations in July 2017 prohibits all the development, testing, manufacture, stockpiling, transfer, use, and threat of nuclear weapons. It is not just a declaration, but it aims to thoroughly eliminate nuclear weapons in that the State party is obliged to do so. In October 2020, the ratification of the 50th Republic of Honduras fulfilled the requirements for entry into force of the Convention, and this Convention finally entered into force in January of this year, when 90 days have passed since then. However, our country has not yet signed this Convention. We must constantly consider whether the nuclear umbrella and nuclear deterrence theory behind this is the path that follows the reduction of nuclear weapons and the deterrence of war, or whether it affirms the overwhelming regime of nuclear weapons. Based on the preamble of the Constitution's right to live peacefully, Article 9's renunciation of war, and the principle of non-preservation of armed forces, we, the Tokyo Bar Association, promote solidarity with the citizens of the world who love peace and aim for the elimination of nuclear weapons. We also strongly wish our government would conduct serious deliberations toward the signing of the Nuclear Weapons Convention, and to demonstrate Japan's leadership in the elimination of nuclear weapons as the only country to have suffered atomic bombings in war.