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Japan Excludes Israeli Ambassador from Annual Nagasaki Peace Ceremony

Nagasaki: Nagasaki Mayor Suzuki Shiro has announced that the Israeli ambassador to Japan will not be invited to the city’s annual ceremony commemorating the US atomic bombing of Nagasaki.

This decision unveiled at a press conference on Monday, reflects the ongoing humanitarian crisis in Gaza due to the Israeli war that it has waged since October 7, 2023.

Mayor Suzuki expressed concerns about potential disruptions at the August 9 ceremony, which is dedicated to mourning the victims of the atomic bomb. He emphasized that the event’s solemn purpose could not tolerate any disturbances. Instead, the mayor will send a letter to the Israeli envoy, urging an immediate cessation of violence in Gaza.

In contrast, the Palestinian envoy to Japan will receive an invitation as usual, maintaining the city’s longstanding practice. The decision draws further attention following Hiroshima’s choice to invite the Israeli ambassador to its peace memorial this year.

Nagasaki will extend invitations to representatives from 154 countries and territories. However, officials confirmed that Russia and Belarus, due to their involvement in the ongoing conflict in Ukraine, will also be excluded from the list.

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