War Resisters International, a ninety-three year old antiwar/pacifist organization, after having gathered from over 60 countries at its Quadrennial conference in Cape Town, South Africa, expresses its deep sorrow over the self-immolation on 29 June of the Japanese man, and its deeper sorrow over the cause of that drastic action.
In the wake of the terrible suffering in Hiroshima and Nagasaki as victims of the world's first, and to date only, use of nuclear weapons in war, the Japanese adopted as Article 9 of their Constitution a prohibition against maintaining army for deployment outside the country's borders.
It seems to us terrible and tragic that, knowing what it collectively knows, Japan is now facing the repudiation of Article 9's prohibition on overseas war, and we entreat the nation and its legislators to reject this move, and maintain Article 9 as a beacon of nonviolence and non-aggression for the rest of the world.
10 July, 2014
On Behalf of the WRI assembly