Japan marks 70th anniversary of Hiroshima atomic bombing with a moment of silence

06/08/2015 10:25
Asia-Plus
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DUSHANBE, August 6, 2015, Asia-Plus -- Japan has marked the 70th anniversary of the atomic bombing of Hiroshima in a ceremony in the city.

Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and foreign delegates were among those observing a moment of silence at the Peace Memorial Park in downtown Hiroshima at 8:15am local time, when the detonation turned the western Japanese city into an inferno.

International media outlets report that the now-bustling city's mayor, Kazumi Matsui, said nuclear weapons were an "absolute evil" as he urged the world to put an end to them forever.

“To coexist we must abolish the absolute evil and ultimate inhumanity that are nuclear weapons. Now is the time to start taking action,” he said in his annual speech.

An American B-29 bomber named Enola Gay dropped an atomic bomb, dubbed "Little Boy", on Hiroshima on August 6, 1945, in one of the final chapters of World War II.

Nearly everything around it was incinerated, with the ground level hit by a wall of heat up to 4,000 degrees Celsius — hot enough to melt steel.

About 140,000 people are estimated to have been killed in the attack, including those who survived the bombing itself but died afterwards due to severe radiation exposure.

On August 9, the port city of Nagasaki was also attacked with an atomic bomb, killing more than 70,000 people.

Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park is a memorial park in the center of Hiroshima.  It is dedicated to the legacy of Hiroshima as the first city in the world to suffer a nuclear attack, and to the memories of the bomb's direct and indirect victims.  The Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park was planned and designed by the Japanese Architect Kenzo Tange at Tange Lab.

The location of Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park was once the city’s busiest downtown commercial and residential district.  The park was built on an open field that was created by the explosion. Today there are a number of memorials and monuments, museums, and lecture halls, which draw over a million visitors annually.  The annual August 6 Peace Memorial Ceremony, which is sponsored by the city of Hiroshima, is also held in the park.  The purpose of the Peace Memorial Park is to not only memorialize the victims, but also to establish the memory of nuclear horrors and advocate world peace. 

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