A grandson of former U.S. President Harry S. Truman, who authorized the atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, attended a ceremony on Monday marking the 67th anniversary of the attack on the Japanese cities which brought the World War II to an end.
Clifton Truman Daniel took part in the ceremony along with Ari Mayer Beser, a grandson of one of the crew on board the B-29 bombers that dropped the bombs on the two cities. They offered prayers at 8:15 a.m. -- the exact time of the bombing of Hiroshima in 1945.
Japanese media quoted Daniel as telling reporters that during the prayer, he was thinking about the souls of people who perished in the attack. He said his presence in Hiroshima might have made some people uneasy, but it had renewed his determination to campaign against nuclear weapons.
Beser said he was thankful to be able to attend the ceremony and said he intended to share the calls for peace by people of Hiroshima when he returned to the United States.
Hiroshima observed the 67th anniversary of the atomic bombing of the city with a memorial ceremony attended by about 50,000 people in the city's Peace Park.
Addressing the gathering, Hiroshima Mayor Kazumi Matsui called on the central government to implement an energy policy that protected public's health and safety in the context of last year's Fukushima nuclear accident. He reminded the assembled crowd of the difficulty of humankind coexisting with nuclear materials.
Matsui also called on the central government to take a stronger leadership role in convincing other countries to join the residents of Hiroshima and Nagasaki in their wish to rid the world of nuclear weapons.
An updated list of the names of 280,959 victims was placed at the cenotaph. It included the names of 5,729 people who died in the past year, or whose Hiroshima-related deaths have been recently confirmed.
People all over Japan observed one minute silence at 8:15 a.m., the exact time when the nuclear bomb was dropped on Hiroshima incinerating its residents.
by RTT Staff Writer
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