Hasina for nuke-free world | The Daily Star
12:00 AM, December 01, 2010 / LAST MODIFIED: 12:00 AM, December 01, 2010

Hasina for nuke-free world

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Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina visits Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum yesterday to pay homage to those killed in 1945 atomic bombing in the Japanese city. Photo: PID

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina yesterday urged the world community to work unitedly to build a nuclear weapon-free world and establish peace.
She also expressed Bangladesh's unwavering support for Japan in building a nuclear-free world.
“Our peace-loving people deeply respect the Hiroshima peace process, gathering under 'Mayors for Peace Cities', to consolidate Bangladesh's unwavering support for Japan in building a nuclear-free world,” Hasina said.
The premier said this while addressing a reception, arranged by Japan Bangladesh Friendship Association and Hiroshima Peace and Culture Foundation, at the International Conference Centre of Hiroshima (ICCH) in the afternoon.
Japan Bangladesh Friendship Association President Tsuoshi Nara moderated the reception speaking in Bengali.
Finance Minister AMA Muhith and Foreign Minister Dipu
Moni were present at the programme.
This was Hasina's second visit to the historic city of Hiroshima.
Earlier, the premier and her delegation arrived at Hiroshima airport at 11:20am (local time). Then the Bangladesh delegation was taken in a colourful motorcade to Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum and Park.
Hasina went round the Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum that houses exhibit on the catastrophic event of the atomic bombing.
During the visit to the Museum, Hiroshima Peace and Culture Foundation Chairman Steve Leeper briefed Hasina about the catastrophic events that befell Hiroshima during the 2nd World War in 1945.
The PM signed the visitors' book kept at the Museum, where she expressed her deep sympathy for the innocent victims of the tragic atomic bombing during the 2nd World War and reiterated Bangladesh's stand for world peace. She also placed wreath at the Cenotaph at the Peace Memorial Park.
Hasina then listened to a testimony given by an atomic bomb survivor at the Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum Hall.
Speaking at the reception function, the PM said Bangladesh is always ready to work with Japan towards reducing nuclear stockpiles, within respective regions, aiming ultimately for a denuclearised world.
“We also support Japan on the issues of human rights, democracy and socio-economic development, neglect of which could easily ignite conflicts and wars,” she said.
Recalling her first visit here in 1997, Hasina said she felt the same sense of humility and sadness for those hundreds of thousands who had perished on that fateful day of 6th August 1945.
“It was a day never to be erased from human history. It was a day when from the peaceful blue skies descended a cataclysm that changed the course of human destiny,” she said.
The premier said Hiroshima Day is remembered today with remorse and anguish by all peace-loving people of the world. “I salute the thousands for their sacrifice and pray for the eternal peace of their departed souls.”
She remarked that she also observes with an immense sense of human pride and marvel at the rebirth of the shining city of Hiroshima, out of its rubble and ashes.
“The same is my feeling for Nagasaki that saw an identical fate, soon after Hiroshima,” Hasina said.
The first ever use of the two nuclear devices heralded a new era of destructive weapons with a capacity to end human civilisations and the planet, dear Mother Earth, she said.
“Indeed, the sacrifice of those who have perished did not go in vain, for this sacrifice has flagged the imperative need of restraint of the use of such destructive power for the resolution of conflicts,” she added.
The premier said the horror of Hiroshima is a constant reminder to urge for the pursuit of peace. Thus, the Hiroshima Day is observed all over the world, including in Bangladesh.
Hasina said that in their efforts for global peace and stability, both Bangladesh and Japan have always worked closely to respect the provisions of the NPT.
She remembered the NPT provisions, which in 1970 made a solemn pledge “to pursue negotiations in good faith on effective measures relating to cessation of the nuclear arms race at an early date and to nuclear disarmament, and on a treaty on general and complete disarmament under strict and effective international control.”
“As we do, I remember “The Russell-Einstein Manifesto” of 9 July 1955 in London…the last line read, “Remember your humanity, and forget the rest. If you can do so, the way lies open to a new Paradise; if you cannot, there lies before you the risk of universal death,” she mentioned.
The premier said the leaders of the world, especially those in charge of those deadly nuclear devices, need to remind themselves of the thought-provoking words of two of the wisest.
“Truly, they need to stand at least for once before the Hiroshima Memorial to fully absorb the implications of what they yield the ability to obliterate the world and all it nourishes.”
Hasina said she bows her head once again in humble honour of those who perished in Hiroshima. “I also wish that those who live and stand here as well as those around the world recognise their ultimate sacrifice, by pursuing the path of love and peace.”
She said as Bangladesh was born out of the blood of as many as three million people in 1971, its experience could not be different.
“Moved by the magnitude of our tragedy, Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman enunciated his doctrine of 'Friendship towards all and Malice towards none',” Hasina mentioned.
Bangabandhu abhorred the use of force to settle any international and bilateral dispute, and rejected the idea of interference in the internal affairs of other states, she added.
“Thereafter, Bangladesh began a series of commitments to the UN Charter, to all protocols related to disarmament, to CTBT, the NPT, to human rights and anti-terrorism,” Hasina said.
The PM was served local food and entertained with a cultural programme.
Finance Minister AMA Muhith, Foreign Minister Dipu Moni, Adviser to the PM Dr Mashiur Rahman and Press Secretary Abul Kalam Azad, among others, accompanied the premier.

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