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Japan echoes calls for nuke-free world

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Japan echoes calls for nuke-free world

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Japan, the only country ever to suffer an atomic bomb attack, has called for a world free from nuclear weapons. At a ceremony in Hiroshima to mark the 64th anniversary of the first A-bomb, Prime Minister Taro Aso backed President Obama’s call to get rid of all nuclear weapons.

“The sufferings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki shall not be repeated,” Aso said. “We must devote ourselves to the abolition of nuclear weapons and the realisation of world peace.” The human cost of the 1945 attack was massive. The bomb, nick-named Little Boy, killed some 140,000 people in its immediate aftermath. Thousands more later died from injuries or radiation sickness. On the anniversary of the attack, the UN’s Ban Ki Moon spoke of his vision of a world free from nuclear arms: ‘‘Let us convince leaders, once and for all, of the waste, futility and dangers posed by weapons of mass destruction. In the face of this catastrophic threat, our message is clear: Together, we must disarm.’‘ The first ever nuclear test – code-named Trinity – was conducted in New Mexico in July 1945. 64 years ago today, Hiroshima was the target; three days later another fell on of Nagasaki, forcing Japan’s surrender and the end of World War II.