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The Japanese city of Hiroshima has marked the 65th anniversary of the world's first atomic bombing. Thousands of people gathered to pray for the deceased, and a world without nuclear weapons.
Hiroshima Peace Park has witnessed 65 years of mourning for those who died during and after the atomic bomb attack by the US. The skeletal Atomic Bomb Dome and few other buildings left standing received visitors on Friday, far earlier than when the ceremony actually began.
At 8:15 am, the peace bell rang. It marked the time of the detonation over Hiroshima 65 years ago. In the blink of an eye, about 100 thousand people were killed.
65 years later, there is only silence to commemorate the deceased.
UN Secretary-general Ban Ki-moon is the first UN chief to attend the annual ceremony. He said he came for world peace.
Ban Ki-moon, UN Secretary-general, said, "Our moment has come. Everywhere, we find new friends and allies. We see new leadership from the most powerful nations. We see new engagement in the U.N. Security Council. We see new energy from civil society."
Ban was joined by representatives from over 70 countries, including US Ambassador to Japan John Roos, the first US representative to do so.
Washington's historical decision to send its ambassador came after President Barack Obama acknowledged his country's moral responsibility, and expressed his determination for global denuclearization last year.
Japan welcomed the decision, and renewed its vow to rid the world of nuclear weapons.
Naoto Kan, Japanese Prime Minister, said, "With an eye on the future, the government will actively make specific suggestions for nuclear disarmament and non-proliferation and is determined to contribute to the formation of an agreement in the international community."
Kan says as the only nation to have suffered nuclear attacks, Japan will lead other nations to realize a world without nuclear arms.
Ceremonies will be held later in the city of Nagasaki, the other city to have suffered an atomic bomb attack.
65 years ago, on August 6th, the atomic bomb "Little Boy" was dropped on Hiroshima by the American B-29 bomber "Enola Gay"...<Full story>