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Hiroshima mayor, A-bomb survivors lament NPT confab collapse.

HIROSHIMA, May 26 Kyodo

Hiroshima Mayor Tadatoshi Akiba criticized the United Nations on Thursday over the effective collapse of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty conference, saying the world organization is not functioning to realize what he termed the global majority's call for nuclear disarmament.

''The United Nations is not functioning enough as a mechanism to realize the opinion of the majority (for nuclear disarmament),'' he said.

Speaking at a news conference in Hiroshima, Akiba, who took part in the confab in New York earlier this month, said he ''reconfirmed'' there that the majority in the international community is demanding nuclear disarmament but that the United Nations apparently failed to reflect the opinion.

''I think it would be wonderful if Japan could become a permanent member of the U.N. Security Council and make a change in that aspect,'' he added.

Meanwhile, Sumiteru Taniguchi, vice president of the Nagasaki Council of the A-Bomb Sufferers, said in Nagasaki, ''The conference collapsed due to the United States' egoism and conflict between participating countries.''

The 76-year-old Taniguchi, who visited New York when the conference opened on May 2, said, ''The government of Japan, which is the only victim of atomic bombings in the world, also should have conveyed more strongly the voice of Nagasaki and Hiroshima.''

''The survivors of the A-bomb and the general public were able to be united for nuclear disarmament but I'm sorry to hear that the confab collapsed,'' he said.

Terumi Tanaka, secretary general of the Japan Confederation of Atomic and Hydrogen Bomb Sufferers Organization who also took part in the NPT conference, said, ''It's really a shame to see the conference collapse,'' adding, ''The major the United States' attempt to cancel the 2000 agreement for abolition of nuclear arms that was reached in the previous conference.''

''The United States did not intend to abolish such arms at all and we must question persistently such an autocratic attitude of the United States. I also think that the Japanese government should have made more efforts in persuading the United States,'' Tanaka said.

The previous NPT review conference in May 2000 adopted a final document stating the ''unequivocal'' commitment to eliminate nuclear weapons and calling for an early entry into force of the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty.
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Publication:Japan Policy & Politics
Geographic Code:9JAPA
Date:May 31, 2005
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