Mayors of Hiroshima and Nagasaki deliver letter, requesting President Obama to visit the A-bombed cities

by Kohei Okata, Staff Writer

On December 25, the cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki announced that they will deliver a letter to the U.S. Embassy in Tokyo on December 26, requesting that U.S. President Barack Obama visit their cities if his visit to Japan next April is confirmed. Writing this letter of request was suggested by Ambassador Caroline Kennedy.

The letter was signed by both Hiroshima Mayor Kazumi Matsui and Nagasaki Mayor Tomihisa Taue. President Obama has called for a world without nuclear weapons. The two mayors are asking that he visit the A-bombed cities to see firsthand the facts of the atomic bombing. The letter will be delivered by the staff members at the Tokyo offices of the two cities.

The governments of Japan and the United States are working together to realize Mr. Obama’s official visit to Japan in April. When Mr. Matsui and Mr. Taue met with Ms. Kennedy on December 16, they requested the visit from Mr. Obama. Ms. Kennedy reportedly said that if they send a letter of request, it will be given due consideration.

Hiroshima and Nagasaki jointly sent letters of request in 2009 and in 2012, but received no reply.

(Originally published on December 26, 2013)