by DEVNET JAPAN
Exactly 75 years have passed since the day our city was assaulted by the nuclear bomb. Despite the passing of three quarters of a century, we are still living in the world where nuclear weapons exisit.
Just why is it that we humans are still unable to rid ourselves of nuclearweapons? Are we truly unable to abandon these dreadful weapons that so cruelly take lives without even allowing for dignified deaths and force people to suffer for entire lifetimes as the result of radiation?
TAUE Tomihisa- Mayor of Nagasaki-
The mission of DEVNET is “ to create and promote partnerships and exchanges among civil society organizations, local and national authorities and entrepreneurs for economic development, social equity, ecological sustainability, gender equality, natural disaster resilience and peace,”
The work of Devnet since its foundation has been to contribute to the networking of peoples of good will around the world in projects that increase development opportunities, contribute to environmental sustainability, and build a context for a peaceful intercommunicated international community.
In this time of global pandemic, the severe and systemic inequalities that live on in the world were laid bare. And world’ s fragilities persist– not just in the face of the present health emergency, but in our faltering response to the climate crisis, and the continued existence and reliance on nuclear weapons by a group of countries.
Seventy-five years ago, for the first time in human history, the awesome power of nuclear bombs was used in Hiroshima and Nagasaki. The horror of that moment, even amid a vast cruel global war, was so enormous that world’s leaders committed themselves to never again utilize such weapons.
The heart of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, that Devnet is fully committed to support, is their promise to leave no one behind and to reach the furthest behind first. To help construct a humanity in which opportunities for development and a life of quality are available to all.
Development, peace and security, and human rights are absolutely interlinked and mutually reinforcing, which is why Devnet is most honoured to have been included among the limited group of participants (due to Covid-19) invited to the memorial peace ceremony of Nagasaki atomic bombing on August 9 at the Peace Park in Nagasaki.
In 2013, Roberto Savio, the founder of Devnet, received the Soka Gakkai Hiroshima Peace Award for his “contribution towards the construction of a century of peace by ‘giving voice to the voiceless’”.
The Prime Minister of Japan, along with representatives from 68 countries including the countries possessing nuclear weapons and international organizations attended the ceremony. Japan has led the efforts of the international community to create “nuclear weapons free world.” To go beyond the logic of fear.
Yet countries around the world, still possess nuclear weapons and are working to modernize their nuclear arsenals for the 21st century.
On this matter the Secretary General of the United Nations whose representative was at the ceremony said:
“Along with climate change, nuclear weapons represent an existential threat to our societies. Most of the roughly 13,000 nuclear arms currently in global arsenals are vastly more destructive than the bombs dropped on Hiroshima and Nagasaki. Any use would precipitate a humanitarian disaster of unimaginable proportions. It is time to return to the shared understanding that a nuclear war cannot be won and must not be fought, to the collective agreement that we should work to create a world free from nuclear weapons, and to the spirit of cooperation that enabled historic progress towards their elimination. Seventy-five years is far too long not to have learned that the possession of nuclear weapons diminishes security, rather than reinforcing it. Today, a world without nuclear weapons seems to be slipping further from our grasp. … Division, distrust and a lack of dialogue threaten to return the world to unrestrained strategic nuclear competition.”
Peacebuilding and development are symbiotic. The work of Devnet, which is now based in Tokyo, includes prominently its contribution to oversee that the capacity building program (TTIP) being carried through the collaboration of Japanese Government, countries from the Asian region and private sector is implemented within the context of United Nations sustainable development goals and human rights principles.
The world has developed vast arsenals of nuclear weapons that are antithetical to the sustainability of the planet. The use of these weapons would not only destroy civilization, it could foreclose the future for humans and most other forms of complex life. Today, in addition to pandemics and climate change, we are challenged to control and then eliminate these weapons.
The goal of Devnet is to promote international collaboration and trust, through increasing partnership and the creation of active networks in pursuing common interests and sustainable development goals, to contribute to build our capacity to address the crucial global threats that linger from the past, like nuclear weapons, and the new ones that ensue from our unsustainable interactions with our life support systems.