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HOME  > Past issues  > 2016 March 2 - 8  > Former foreign minister of Marshall Islands attends Bikini Day rally
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2016 March 2 - 8 [PEACE]

Former foreign minister of Marshall Islands attends Bikini Day rally

March 2, 2016
On March 1, the day marking the 62nd anniversary of the U.S. H-bomb test explosion at Bikini Atoll which caused radiation fallout on Marshall islanders and more than 1,000 Japanese fishing boats, the annual “Bikini Day” rally took place in Shizuoka’s Yaizu City with 2,000 people, including foreign and Japanese peace activists, participating.

The former foreign minister of the Republic of the Marshall Islands and other foreign delegates from France, Britain, and the United States delivered speeches.

Former Marshall Islands Foreign Minister Tony de Brum made his debut at the rally and at a previous day’s workshop. His country filed with the International Court of Justice a lawsuit against nuclear weapons states.

Regarding the 1954 U.S. nuclear test at Bikini Atoll, Brum said that Marshallese people were deliberately exposed to radiation by the U.S. military. On top of that, he said that it covered up critical health impacts, carried out human experimentation, and imposed on islanders immediate return to their places. The former foreign minister stressed that what his country experienced over nuclear development is something like abuse and bullying and denial of human dignity by powerful people. Civilized society and human beings can never coexist with immoral and illegal nuclear weapons, he added.

Brum went on to say that nuclear weapons states should begin negotiations to disarm immediately and negotiate in good faith an agreement for the elimination of nuclear weapons.

Yaizu City Mayor Nakano Hiromichi spoke as a guest. On behalf of SEALDs, a youth group leading public movements for working to have the war legislation repealed, Hayashida Mitsuhiro delivered a solidarity speech.

* * *

Earlier on the same day, 1,600 people marched in demonstration from Yaizu Station to a temple holding the tomb of Kuboyama Aikichi, a crewmember of the fishing boat, Daigo Fukuryu Maru (5th Lucky Dragon) which was affected by radioactive fallout from the U.S. H-bomb test explosion.

Past related article:
> Bikini Day rally participants call for ban on nuclear weapons in 70th year following US atomic bombings [March 1 and 2, 2015]
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