Reporting the underreported threat of nuclear weapons and efforts by those striving for a nuclear free world. A project of The Non-Profit International Press Syndicate Japan and its overseas partners in partnership with Soka Gakkai International in consultative status with ECOSOC since 2009.

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TPNW: The Path to Freeing the World from Nuclear Weapons


The following is a welcome remark at the opening ceremony given on behalf of Soka Gakkai International (SGI), a co-sponsor of the "Humanitarian Impact of Nuclear Weapons and the Central Asian Nuclear-Weapon-Free Zone" regional conference held in the Republic of Kazakhstan, Central Asia, on the occasion of the International Day Against Nuclear Tests (August 29). The conference was organized by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Kazakhstan, in partnership with SGI, the International Committee of the Red Cross(ICRC), the Center for International Security and Policy (CISP), the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons(ICAN).

By Hirotsugu Terasaki

Astana (INPS Japan) — Good morning, esteemed participants, colleagues, and friends. My name is Hirotsugu Terasaki from Soka Gakkai International (SGI). It is an honor to be part of today’s significant conference here in Astana. My profound gratitude goes to Mr. Kairat Umarov, First Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs of Kazakhstan, Ms. Biljana Milosevic, Head of ICRC Regional Delegation in Tashkent, representatives of the diplomatic corps, and the co-organizers. JAPANESE

Allow me to briefly introduce our organization, Soka Gakkai International. “Soka Gakkai,” which is Japanese, translates to “society for value creation” in English. Based on the Buddhist principle of respect for the dignity of life, our objective is to cultivate a culture of peace through grassroots initiatives, public awareness campaigns and advocacy at the United Nations. Since the end of the Second World War, we have placed foremost importance on our work to realize a world without nuclear weapons. We are pleased to have worked closely with Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, and Uzbekistan in the past to promote cultural and educational exchanges. It is my hope that today’s meeting will strengthen our bond and expand our dialogue with the five participating nations from Central Asia.

Side event “The Catastrophic Consequences of Atom Bomb Testing—A First Person’s Testimony” Credit: INPS Japan

At the First Preparatory Committee Meeting of the 2026 NPT Review Conference held in Vienna last month, we partnered with the Permanent Mission of Kazakhstan in Vienna and the Center for International Security and Policy to organize a side event. The event was about the catastrophic humanitarian consequences of nuclear testing. The attendance of more than 50 individuals underscores the gravity and importance of this issue.

During this event, Mr. Dmitry Veselov, also present today, recounted his personal experiences with nuclear testing. Together with the audience, I listened attentively to his poignant narrative which underscored the far-reaching and lasting consequences of nuclear weapons. If the discourse on nuclear weapons remains abstract and solely political, we risk overlooking the essential nature of their danger and the threat they pose. We must never lose sight of the unspeakable human suffering caused by nuclear weapons and their testing. We must continue to ask ourselves, “Do we truly need these weapons that cause indiscriminate devastation and mass destruction of human lives to maintain global peace?” The answer is evident. Both TPNW and NPT share the same vision—to realize “a world without nuclear weapons.” To this end, as an active member of civil society, we are committed to further expanding disarmament education around the world.

The TPNW defines all nuclear weapons as “inhumane” and absolutely prohibits their development, testing, production, possession, usage and even threats of use. The TPNW’s clauses essentially advocate for transforming regional nuclear-weapons-free zones into a global one. In that sense, Central Asia, having ratified the Central Asia Nuclear-Weapon-Free Zone Treaty, is already championing the TPNW’s principles.

As we convene today’s meeting, I sincere hope that we can all engage in an open, heart-to-heart dialogue addressing the challenges facing Central Asia, and deepen our collective understanding of nuclear disarmament and the humanitarian consequences of nuclear weapons. And I strongly hope that we can share the important value of the  TPNW. In these perilous times with the looming threat of nuclear weapons usage, I hope that today’s meaningful discussions will propel us towards a more disarmed, and secure future for humankind. [INPS Japan — September 14, 2023]

Thank you very much.

Filmed and Edited by Katsuhiro Asagiri, Multimedia Director of INPS Japan.
Regional Conference: “Humanitarian Impact of Nuclear Weapons and the Central Asian Nuclear-Weapon-Free Zone” held on Aug 29, Astana, Kazakhstan.

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