A Petition to the First Meeting of the States Parties regarding the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons

Japanese Communist Party Member of the House of Representatives Kasai Akira

As a political party in the only country in the world that suffered nuclear attacks, the Japanese Communist Party conveys its heartfelt congratulations on the opening of the first Meeting of the States Parties to the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons (TPNW). In order to make full use of the normative force of the treaty, which is now in force, overcome the real risk of a nuclear war, and take a step toward a world free from nuclear weapons, the JCP calls on the participants of the Meeting to take notice of the following requests.

1,The JCP requests the Meeting to issue a fresh warning to remind the world that nuclear weapons will, once used, bring about a catastrophe with devastating humanitarian consequences and underscores the need of the Meeting to send out a strong message to prevent this.

The world is increasingly concerned about Russian President Vladimir Putin's repeated threat to use nuclear weapons. The treaty banning nuclear weapons was created with the states parties to the treaty being "mindful of the unacceptable suffering of and harm caused to the victims of the use of nuclear weapons (hibakusha), as well as of those affected by the testing of nuclear weapons". Now is the time to revisit and sincerely listen to hibakusha's appeal that nuclear weapons are "weapons of madness, bringing total extinction. They are weapons so evil that humanity must never accept them." The international society must do its utmost to prevent nuclear weapons from being used.

2,The TPNW prohibits states parties to use or "threaten to use nuclear weapons" (Article 1 (d)), thus, in essence, rejecting the nuclear deterrence theory. The JCP calls on the Meeting to encourage the world to overcome the adherence to the nuclear deterrence theory. The Putin administration has threatened to use nuclear weapons, taking no heed of the fact that Russia's nuclear attack will also take a heavy toll on its own citizens. This clearly shows the limitations behind the nuclear deterrence theory. To adopt the theory is equivalent to a commitment to use nuclear weapons without hesitation when necessary and induce a disaster with grave humanitarian outcomes much worse than the atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. Such a theory is morally unacceptable.

3,The JCP expects that the Meeting will play an influential role in stimulating public opinion for the abolition of nuclear weapons. The total elimination of nuclear weapons is "the only way to guarantee that nuclear weapons are never used again under any circumstances". Achieving this is an ever more imperative need for the survival of humanity today.

4,The TPNW stipulates provision of assistance to the victims of the use of nuclear weapons (hibakusha) as well as those affected by the testing of nuclear weapons and calls for international cooperation to achieve this. The JCP calls on the Meeting to formulate concrete measures to provide this assistance.

5,The TPNW was created on the basis of the U.N. Charter, as stated in its preamble. Russia's aggression against Ukraine is a grave violation of the U.N. Charter and international laws. The international community must unite in order to bring the current situation to an end as soon as possible and to resolve the humanitarian crisis there. The JCP hopes that the Meeting of the States Parties will also make an active contribution in this regard.

The world must promote the universalization of the TPNW and strengthen its normative force. The JCP will do its utmost to achieve the participation of the Japanese government, the only country in the world to be bombed with atomic weapons during war.

The JCP participated in the U.N. Conference to negotiate the TPNW held in 2017 as a member of international civil society and worked hard to realize the treaty. The JCP expresses its willingness to continue to further develop collaboration with the governments and civil society of all countries participating in the Meeting in order to realize the common goal of "a nuclear-weapon-free world".

The Central Committee of the Japanese Communist Party
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