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News :: International
Each Step a Prayer For A Nuclear Free Future.
26 Apr 2005
Fort Lee, NJ - On Saturday, April 30, 2005, an international group of people will arrive in Fort Lee NJ. They will be met by the Mayor of Hiroshima, Tadatoshi Akiba, and Hiroshima bomb survivors.
The "Stop the Bombs International Peace Walk" will depart from Harrison, New Jersey around 8am and travel around 20 miles on foot to arrive at The Church of the Good Shepherd Episcopal (1576 Palisade Ave) around 4pm. After a potluck dinner with the local community, there will be presentations by Mayor Akiba, the atomic bomb survivors and walkers. The group is on the final stretch of a 7-week pilgrimage from the gates of the Y-12 Nuclear Weapons Plant in Oak Ridge, TN, to the United Nations in New York City.

The journey began on Monday, March 14, from the gates of Y-12, which helped to produce the "Little Boy" bomb that destroyed Hiroshima, Japan, sixty years ago this August . The walkers' arrival in New York City on May 1 coincides with the UN Review Conference of the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty (NPT), the central international agreement on nuclear disarmament. Despite America signing the NPT and thus pledging to disarm, Y-12 continues to produce weapons components and upgrade the nation's nuclear arsenal.

"The U.S. has created an atmosphere that could spark a new Nuclear Arms Race,"
says walk organizer Marcus Atkinson from Australia. "The U.S. and many other nations continue to violate international treaties and we have to hold them accountable to their commitment to disarm .It is time for us to demand that our governments create a safe and peaceful world".

Walkers have gathered from all over the globe, representing Australia, Japan, India, Cape Verde (West Africa) , Austria, and the United States. They will present a workshop to the NPT Review Conference on May 3rd, asserting their conviction that the maintenance and production of nuclear weapons undermines attempts to create international community and world peace.

"Though we come from many countries, backgrounds and religious beliefs, we are walking together as a united voice for disarmament", said Natalie Wasley, an Australian walk participant. "Each step we take is an active prayer that the world will be free of the threat of nuclear weapons."

Along the journey, walkers have met with politicians and church and community groups to discuss the NPT and the Y-12 Nuclear Weapons Plant. They carry letters from the Mayor of Hiroshima, advocating the Peace Walk and have invited city Mayors en route to join the international "Mayors for Peace" campaign, which works toward total nuclear abolition by the year 2020 (www.pcf.city.hiroshima.jp/mayors/english).

The walk is sponsored by Mayors for Peace, Footprints for Peace, the International Peace Pilgrimage, Nipponzan Myohoji, and the Oak Ridge Environmental Peace Alliance. The walk will culminate in a massive demonstration in Central Park in New York City on May 1.

Daily updates and photos of the pilgrimage are available at
http://stopthebombswalk.peacehq.com.

For more information contact Jim Toren or Natalie Wasley 513-403 6698
See also:
http://peacehq.tripod.com/OSSTBIPW/stbipw-home.html

This work is in the public domain
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