@ 15 days until Hiroshima Summit: Korean A-bomb Survivors

by Hiromi Morita, Staff Writer

People in the Korean Peninsula, some of whom lost their land because of Japan’s colonial rule, came to Japan one after another, seeking for a way of living or were conscripted as soldiers or laborers. In particular, a large number of farmers came to Hiroshima from Hapcheon-gun in Gyeongsangnam-do in South Korea, and experienced the atomic bombing. Hapcheon, where many A-bomb survivors returned after Japan’s defeat in World War II, is called “Hiroshima in South Korea” as well. In Hapcheon, there is a memorial space where arrays of Buddhist memorial tablets for A-bomb victims stand.

How many Korean people lived in Hiroshima and fell victim to the atomic bombing at the time of the bombing? The actual number of these people is still unknown.

Those who survived the atomic bombings and returned to their country were placed outside the framework of relief measures provided by the Japanese government for a long time. We should not forget that A-bomb survivors in North Korea, a nation with which Japan has no diplomatic relations, are still left behind.

(Originally published on May 4, 2023)