2013-08-09 08:43:22

Anniversary of Nagasaki marked

(Vatican Radio) People in the Japanese city of Nagasaki have been marking the anniversary of the atomic bombing, this day in 1945. Mourners observed a minute's silence, and speakers called for greater action on global disarmament. Details from Alastair Wanklyn in Tokyo.

Mourners stood in silence at the moment the bomb dropped, recalling the 74-thousand or so people who died in the blast or within a few months of it.

The speakers included one man who survived the bombing. Shohei Tsuiki was 18 years at that time.

It was, he said, "a scene from hell," people with burned skin hanging off their bodies, some clutching their dead children.

"I've been lucky to live as long as I have," Tsuiki said, asdding that what he now wants most is the abolition of nuclear weapons.

Nagasaki's mayor spoke, too, criticising Japan's government for failing this year to sign a statement rejecting the use of nuclear weapons under any circumstances.

But, in his address, Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said Japan would push for disarmament. It is in a unique position to do so, he said, because Japan is the only country to have suffered a nuclear attack.

Alastair Wanklyn reports from Tokyo. Listen RealAudioMP3

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