Visit to Vienna during the first Preparatory Committee Meeting for the 2015 NPT Review Conference
|The NGO session of the first Preparatory Committee Meeting for the NPT Review Conference
Mayor Taue of Nagasaki delivered a speech at the NGO session of the first Preparatory Committee Meeting for the NPT Review Conference. Urging government representatives to “listen to their [atomic bomb survivors] stories and take to heart the cruel inhumanity of these weapons,” he asked them to make greater effort to achieve agreement on a nuclear weapons convention and nuclear-weapon-free zones in various parts of the world.
He also asked for support and cooperation for Mayor Matsui’s vision of an NPT Review Conference in Hiroshima.
|Mayors for Peace 5000-Member Milestone Poster Exhibition at Vienna City Hall
Mayor Taue of Nagasaki visited Vienna City Hall and attended the opening ceremony of the Mayors for Peace Poster Exhibition commemorating the 5,000-city milestone. The posters were displayed along the periphery of the large City Hall courtyard.
|Presenting seeds of A-bomb survivor trees to Vienna City (Green Legacy Hiroshima)
Following the opening ceremony, Mr. Leeper, chairman of the Board of the Hiroshima Peace Culture Foundation, introduced the Green Legacy Hiroshima project and presented seeds of A-bomb survivor trees, to the representative of the Vienna City Council who made the poster exhibition possible.
|Mayors for Peace Workshop
Mayors for Peace held a workshop entitled “Nuclear Weapons Abolition: Hiroshima, Nagasaki, and Japan – their roles and cooperation with NGOs.” Mayor Matsui emphasized the importance of sharing around the world the experiences of the A-bomb survivors and their message that nuclear weapons are an absolute evil that should not exist. He also said that he would promote further growth of the membership of Mayors for Peace and pursue ever more aggressively the abolition of nuclear weapons by 2020. He added that conclusion of a nuclear weapons convention is the most effective way to abolish nuclear weapons and asked the audience to support the idea of holding meetings of policymakers, including the next NPT Review Conference, in Hiroshima.
Mayor Taue of Nagasaki, Mr. Mari Amano, Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary and Head of the Delegation of Japan to the Conference on Disarmament, and NGO representative Akira Kawasaki also made speeches describing their roles.
(Meeting with the ambassador of Norway)
(Meeting with the ambassador of Sri Lanka)
|Meetings with the ambassadors of Norway and Sri Lanka
Following the workshop, Mayor Matsui met the ambassadors of Norway and Sri Lanka stationed in Vienna. He asked for support for Mayors for Peace activities and for holding the NPT Review Conference in Hiroshima. The ambassador of Sri Lanka signed the petition for a nuclear weapons convention during the meeting.
|Meeting with the executive secretary of the Preparatory Commission for the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty Organization (CTBTO)
Mayor Matsui and Mayor Taue met Ambassador Tibor Toth, executive secretary of the CTBTO. During that meeting, the Mayors praised the constant effort of CTBTO, including its International Monitoring System, which monitors nuclear testing. Specifically, they expressed gratitude for the data the CTBTO collects and distributes. They asked for cooperation with Mayors for Peace campaign activities.
|Opening ceremony for the 5,000-city milestone poster exhibit
Mayors for Peace held an official opening ceremony for the poster exhibit in Vienna International Center. Mayor Matsui said he hopes the poster exhibit will help comprehend the absolute evil of nuclear weapons and the catastrophic destruction they cause. He also requested that people visit Hiroshima and Nagasaki, learn the tragedies of these A-bombed cities and share the experiences and the voices of the A-bomb survivors.
|Submission of signatures calling for a nuclear weapons convention
During the opening ceremony for the posters, Mayor Matsui submitted signatures on the Mayors for Peace petition calling for a nuclear weapons convention. He presented a few of the petitions and a certificate representing the total of 478,303 signatures collected to date to Ambassador Peter Woolcott, chairman of the first Preparatory Committee Meeting for the NPT Review Conference. Mayor Matsui conveyed the fervent wish for nuclear abolition represented by each signature and asked the Ambassador to make every effort toward an immediate start to concrete negotiations on the nuclear weapons convention.
Mr. Woolcott praised the activities of Mayors for Peace and personally signed the petition. (signature of Mr. Woolcott)
Mayor Matsui then took the opportunity to request support for holding the next NPT Review Conference in Hiroshima.
|2020 Vision Campaign Association General Meeting
At the meeting, the participants agreed to proceed with the following Mayors for Peace activities:
1. Promote further expansion of the membership of Mayors for Peace and enhance local activities in member cities and regions.
As an example, we will enhance the 2020 Vision Campaign and promote Green Legacy Hiroshima, a project that will send the seeds of A-bomb survivor trees all over the world.
2. Appeal to the UN by attending international conferences, such as those related to NPT Review Conferences, and by submitting petition signatures.
3. Appeal to individual nations according to their situations.
They also confirmed the importance of keeping a citizen perspective and cooperating with NGOs to implement the above mentioned activities.
|A special committee meeting to strengthen Mayors for Peace management
In this meeting, attendees confirmed certain content derived from discussion during the first meeting of this special staff-level committee held in Hannover. They decided to further deliberate the content, including points 1-3 below, in early July in Ypres, Belgium. The goal will be a proposal for Mayors for Peace structure and funding to be submitted to the General Conference in August 2013. The group came to general agreement on the following:
1. The operating costs that have been paid by Hiroshima and Nagasaki should be shared by the membership, which will be divided into regional groups.
2. With each regional group, each member city will be asked to pay a certain amount of money. However, the burden can be eased by, for example, fundraising events. Each group will decide for itself how to raise the required funds.
3. The system will allow the retention of membership even by cities that are unable to pay, but those that don’t pay may be excluded from certain Mayors for Peace activities.
|Meeting with Ambassador Douglas Roche, chairman emeritus of Middle Powers Initiative (MPI)
Mayor Matsui met Ambassador Douglas Roche, a former Canadian Senator and Disarmament Ambassador, Hiroshima City Special Honorary Citizen and chairman emeritus of MPI. They discussed Mayors for Peace activities and exchanged opinions on future collaboration possibilities.
|Meeting with Dr. Tilman Ruff, chairman of International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons (ICAN)
Mayor Matsui met Dr. Tilman Ruff, chairman of ICAN, along with ICAN members and representatives of other NGOs. He explained his approach to Mayors for Peace campaign activities and discussed with them the possibilities for collaboration. In this meeting, Dr. Ruff mentioned that ICAN will hold a conference prior to the 20th World Congress of International Physicians for the Prevention of Nuclear War (IPPNW), which will take place in Hiroshima this August.