ICAN declares G7 summit a “gross failure of global leadership”
Prime Minister Trudeau visited Hiroshima this week, the city where the first nuclear attack took place, bombed by the United States in 1945. The Prime Minister was participating in a meeting of G7 leaders hosted by Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida, who specifically chose his hometown for the location for the summit.
Many anti-nuclear campaigners had hoped global leaders would use the opportunity to take concrete steps to avoid a nuclear catastrophe, the risk of which has risen with the Russian invasion of Ukraine and the risk of shooting-war with members of the NATO military alliance.
But the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons (ICAN), said the G7 Leaders’ Hiroshima Vision on Nuclear Disarmament statement, “falls far short of providing any meaningful outcomes for nuclear disarmament.”
Prime Minister Trudeau took a bellicose tone at the meeting. “[Russian Federation President] Putin’s reckless nuclear rhetoric threatens us all. Our message from Hiroshima is clear: G7 partners will continue to apply pressure on Russia to end its war of choice, and we will not be intimidated by nuclear rhetoric as we continue our pursuit of a more peaceful, stable, and secure future for everyone,” reads his quote on the PM’s website.
ICAN’s Executive Director Daniel Hogsta responded to the G7’s statement “This is more than a missed opportunity. With the world facing the acute risk that nuclear weapons could be used for the first time since Hiroshima and Nagasaki were bombed, this is a gross failure of global leadership. Simply pointing fingers at Russia and China is insufficient. We need the G7 countries, which all either possess, host or endorse the use of nuclear weapons, to step up and engage the other nuclear powers in disarmament talks if we are to reach their professed goal of a world without nuclear weapons”
World-renown Hiroshima survivor Setsuko Thurlow, 91, who lives in Toronto, spoke to Time Magazine this week about the summit.
“Thurlow and her fellow survivors of the atomic bombings, known locally as hibakusha, believe that words are not enough, urging the grouping to take concrete steps toward ensuring such tragedy doesn’t unfold once again,” reports Time. “‘Sure, I condemn the behavior of Russia and North Korea,’ she says. ‘But I am not sure the West is showing the willingness to come together and really, in good faith, negotiate for a solution.’”
Young people attending the ICAN Hiroshima Youth Summit in Hiroshima are calling for a global day of action on Saturday, May 20th. Readers can answer the call using suggestions for social media actions posted on their website, or by sending a message to Prime Minister Justin Trudeau through PeaceQuest.