Hiroshima mayor discloses gist of peace message

The mayor of Hiroshima says he plans to use this year's peace declaration to call on the Japanese government to join a UN treaty on banning nuclear weapons.

Mayor Kazumi Matsui on Thursday disclosed the gist of the declaration he is to deliver at the ceremony marking the 74th anniversary of the city's atomic bombing on August 6.

Matsui said he will start his speech by noting that tensions are mounting among countries across the world while moves to abolish nuclear weapons are stalling.

He said he will call on people in the world to remember that they once pledged to build a system of cooperation to realize a world without war.

He is also set to call on global leaders to make progress toward ideals that societies are aiming for.

Matsui said he will press the Japanese government to listen to the voices of hibakusha, or survivors of the 1945 atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. He said they want Japan to sign and ratify the UN Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons.

The mayor also plans to urge the government to take a step forward and exercise leadership to create a world without nuclear weapons.

This year's declaration will feature, for the first time, a short poem by a hibakusha who was 5 years old when the bomb was dropped. The 31-syllable poem depicts the scene of atrocity that the person actually witnessed immediately after the bombing.