Ukraine ambassador reflects on president's Hiroshima trip

It's been almost a week since Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy stunned the world with a surprise trip to the G7 summit in Hiroshima.

NHK World spoke with Ukraine's ambassador to Japan on Friday, about the impact the visit had on the Ukrainian leader, and how Japan could inspire his country's future.

Sergiy Korsunsky says Zelenskyy's trip to Hiroshima was only confirmed to him several days before it actually happened.

He admits it was challenging. But Zelenskyy could not miss an opportunity to speak with the leaders of the G7 nations, India, and other countries face to face.

Sergiy Korsunsky says it was a big challenge and big opportunity to see the president that far from home at the time of war.

The president had an opportunity to visit the city's Peace Memorial Museum to see one of the worst human tragedies of the 20th century.
Korsunsky says Zelenskyy was moved by what he saw during his tour.

The Ukrainian leader's speech even appeared to take inspiration from one of its most striking artifacts left behind by the bomb, "Human Shadow Etched in Stone."
He told reporters that his country may have been left as no more than a "shadow on the stone of history" because of the war.

Korsunsky says the image is a powerful reminder to all who see it that the atomic bombing should not be repeated.

Zelenskyy also said the aftermath of the explosion in Hiroshima resembles what's been done to Ukrainian cities with conventional weapons.
He says that when he looked at photos of how Hiroshima was destroyed, he was reminded of the city of Bakhmut.

But Korsunsky says Ukraine is also taking inspiration from Hiroshima's miraculous recovery.

He says, as his country prepares to enter its "reconstruction phase," it hopes to tap into Japan's extensive knowledge, gained from over a century of rebuilding from disasters, both natural and man-made.

Korsunsky says that's why Japan is set to play a key role in those efforts.
He says they've spoken to the Japanese government about hosting an international conference dedicated to charting out the rejuvenation of Ukrainian infrastructure.
Korsunsky says Japan's reemergence from war is a path Ukraine wants to follow.