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PM Suga skips pledge for 'world without nuclear weapons' in Hiroshima speech

Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga delivers a speech to mark the 76th anniversary of the atomic bombing of Hiroshima, at Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park in the city's Naka Ward on Aug. 6, 2021. (Mainichi/Kenji Inugai)

TOKYO -- Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga skipped a pledge to "strive toward the realization of a world without nuclear weapons" in his speech during a ceremony in Hiroshima on Aug. 6 to mark the 76th anniversary of the U.S. atomic bombing of the city in 1945.

    In his speech, the prime minister was originally due to say, "At the United Nations General Assembly soon after I became prime minister, I delivered a message to the world that Hiroshima and Nagasaki must never be repeated, and that with this resolve, Japan will spare no effort in realizing a world free of nuclear weapons while firmly upholding the Three Non-Nuclear Principles. Our country is the only country to have been hit by an atomic bomb during the war, and understands more than any nation the inhumanity of nuclear weapons, and it is important to steadily make efforts to achieve a world without nuclear weapons. The international security environment in recent years has been tough, and there are gaps between the positions of each country on how to advance nuclear disarmament."

    However, Suga skipped a large part of this, including the entire sentence from "Our country is the only country..." but read the sentence from "and there are gaps..." making the part of the speech hard to follow.

    In a news conference after his speech, Suga apologized, saying, "In my speech just before, I skipped over one part, and I'd like to take the opportunity to apologize for that. Please excuse me."

    (Japanese original by Shun Kawaguchi, Political News Department)

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