U.S. to Send Envoy to Hiroshima Ceremony


Kathy Chen and Mariko Sanchanta
Wall Street Journal
August 6, 2010

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WASHINGTON—The U.S. will for the first time send a representative to attend Japan’s annual memorial marking America’s atomic bombing of Hiroshima, in a move that could strengthen U.S. ties with Japan but one that also carries political risk for the Obama administration.

John Roos, the U.S. ambassador to Japan, will join representatives of 73 other countries, including Britain and France, for Friday’s event marking the 65th anniversary of the Aug. 6, 1945, bombing. United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon will also attend.

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The annual Hiroshima peace memorial ceremony—where doves were released as a symbol for world-wide peace—was a poignant reminder of the lives that were lost in the aftermath of the bombing. Hiroshima Mayor Tadatoshi Akiba, Prime Minister Naoto Kan, other officials and representatives of survivors lay wreaths at the ceremony, which began at 8 a.m. Friday. At 8:15 a.m., the moment the bomb was dropped, participants observed a minute of silence.

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