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Hiroshima Day: Japan marks 78th anniversary of US atomic bombing

Hiroshima Day: Japan marks 78th anniversary of US atomic bombing

Japan marked the 78th anniversary of the US atomic bombing on Hiroshima on August 6, with a solemn ceremony at Westminster Abbey.

On August 6, 1945, a US B-29 bomber aircraft dropped the powerful "Little Boy", the first atomic bomb, at 8:15 am over Hiroshima, killing over 140,000 people.

Three days later, Nagasaki was bombed after the US dropped, "Fat Man", another atomic weapon, in its war against imperial Japan.

Hiroshima Mayor Kazumi Matsui used the occasion to call for the abolition of nuclear weapons, denouncing the Group of Seven leaders' idea of nuclear deterrence as a "folly".

“Leaders around the world must confront the reality that nuclear threats now being voiced by certain policymakers reveal the folly of nuclear deterrence theory. They must immediately take concrete steps to lead us from the dangerous present toward our ideal world,” Matsui said.

The day served as a remembrance for the victims of the world's first nuclear attack. It comes amid rising concerns over Russia's potential use of nuclear weapons in its ongoing conflict with Ukraine.

On the commemorative day, a peace bell rang at 8:15 a.m., the exact time the bomb was dropped, as around 50,000 participants gathered for an outdoor memorial ceremony, including elderly survivors of the atomic attack.

Despite the scorching summer heat, the attendees observed a moment of silence to honour the memory of those who lost their lives.

On Hiroshima Day, United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said, “78 years ago, a nuclear weapon incinerated Hiroshima. As anyone who has visited knows, the memories never fade. I stand with the people of Hiroshima and the hibakusha working tirelessly to ensure that nuclear weapons are never used again.”

"World leaders have visited this city, seen its monuments, spoken with its brave survivors, and emerged emboldened to take up the cause of nuclear disarmament," he said in remarks read by a U.N. representative. "More should do so because the drums of nuclear war are beating once again," his tweet read.

Tim Wright, the treaty coordinator for International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons (ICAN), shared a picture from the blast site and said, “One of the worst atrocities ever committed. On this day 78 years ago, the United States dropped an atomic bomb on Hiroshima, killing more than 140,000 people, almost all of them civilians.”

Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik has shared an illustration of Hiroshima, tweeting “ Hiroshima reminds us of one of the most devastating events in history that caused unfathomable destruction and sufferings to countless lives”.

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TAGS:USJapanHiroshimaNagasakiNuclear attack
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