Caravan team leaves Hiroshima in support of the Hiroshima-Nagasaki Protocol

by Uzaemonnaotsuka Tokai, Staff Writer

On September 28, a caravan team launched by a Hiroshima-based citizens’ group that has been appealing for nuclear abolition by the year 2020 left Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park in downtown Hiroshima. The first team will visit 14 cities and towns in Shimane Prefecture over four days, call on leaders of the municipalities for signatures, and engage in street-level campaigns.

The members of the first team are both hibakusha: Yoshihiko Yagi, 75, a resident of Asaminami Ward in the city of Hiroshima and Hiroo Iso, 68, a resident of Fukuyama City in Hiroshima Prefecture. At the departing ceremony, which was held in front of Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum, Mr. Yagi said, "The world has become more enthusiastic about nuclear abolition. We don't want to lose this opportunity to appeal for nuclear abolition."

The hibakusha plan to visit six cities, including Matsue, Izumo, and Masuda, and eight towns in Shimane Prefecture. They will call for signatures in support of the Hiroshima-Nagasaki Protocol, a road map proposed by Mayors for Peace, which is chaired by Hiroshima Mayor Tadatoshi Akiba. The protocol outlines a series of steps leading to the abolition of nuclear weapons by 2020.

Mayors for Peace is making efforts so that the Hiroshima-Nagasaki Protocol can be adopted at the Nuclear Non-proliferation Treaty (NPT) Review Conference to be held in May 2010. The caravan team project has been organized by the “Yes! Campaign,” a citizens’ group for which Maeko Nobumoto serves as secretary general. The group has worked on disseminating information on the Hiroshima-Nagasaki Protocol and will send successive caravan teams mainly to regions in Japan with few member cities of Mayors for Peace.

(Originally published on September 29, 2009)

Related articles
Illustrated book on the Hiroshima-Nagasaki Protocol is published (Aug. 2, 2009)