On Hiroshima anniversary Annan stresses need for conflict prevention

Quoting the Declaration’s goal “to strive for the elimination of weapons of mass destruction, particularly nuclear weapons,” the Secretary-General said the world must “dispel the fearful shadow that weapons of mass destruction cast across every nation.””We must replace a culture of reaction with one of conflict prevention,” he said.Noting that the hope of abolishing nuclear weapons by the end of the 20th century had not been realized, Mr. Annan said States with nuclear capacity had made an “unequivocal undertaking” at last year’s Review Conference of the Parties to the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons to accomplish the total elimination of nuclear weapons.”It is now time to turn these words into deeds,” he said. “Let us renew our solemn vow never to repeat the tragedy of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. Let us also resolve to prevent conflict by ending the poverty, inequity and intolerance that foster it.”The message was delivered at the Hiroshima Peace Memorial Ceremony by the UN Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs, Kenzo Oshima. The ceremony is held in the Peace Memorial Park in Hiroshima every year to commemorate the atomic bomb that was dropped on downtown Hiroshima on 6 August 1945.

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