I am pleased to send greetings to all participants at the 2013 World Conference against Atomic and Hydrogen Bombs, which is an important part of the global disarmament movement.
By bringing together grass-roots activists, government officials and a growing network of groups throughout the world, you are helping to strengthen our common commitment to eliminate nuclear weapons. I applaud you for supporting this cause through large public rallies and petitions that have garnered the support of millions of citizens.
We are now witnessing a surge of new interest in nuclear disarmament, based largely on an increasing awareness of the horrific humanitarian consequences of nuclear weapons. This was a key theme at the 2010 Review Conference of the States Parties to the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty and at subsequent international meetings.
The General Assembly will also focus on the issue at its High-Level Meeting on nuclear disarmament on 26 September.
I thank all of you for contributing to this worldwide momentum. I especially pay warm tribute to the hibakusha who for over six decades have spoken out about their experiences of having survived a nuclear attack. These brave activists inspire me to intensify my efforts to work for a world free of nuclear weapons. I am determined to pursue this goal until it is achieved.
This is not only a conference against nuclear weapons; it is a conference for a more peaceful, secure, prosperous and just world. Disarmament frees up resources to address major global threats, including poverty, hunger and disease. As such, it can contribute to our efforts to reach the Millennium Development Goals by 2015 and support the realization of a sustainable future for all humankind.
I wish you great success in advancing our shared struggle to rid the world of nuclear weapons.