Kerry: Hiroshima anniversary shows importance of Iran nuke deal
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Kerry: Hiroshima anniversary shows importance of Iran nuke deal

KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia (AP) — U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry says the 70th anniversary of the Hiroshima bombing underscores the significance of the nuclear deal negotiated between Iran and six world powers.

Speaking Thursday at a meeting with Japan’s foreign minister, Kerry said the Hiroshima anniversary is a “very, very powerful reminder” of the impact of war, but also demonstrates the importance of the Iran deal.

He said that deal would reduce the possibility of more nuclear weapons. And, he said the Obama administration is committed to reducing existing stockpiles of atomic bombs in negotiations with Russia.

Kerry paid tribute to Hiroshima’s survivors and to the current strong relationship between Japan and the United States. He said Thursday’s anniversary is a “great tribute to remembrance but also to the possibilities of the future.”

Earlier, Hiroshima Mayor Kazumi Matsui renewed his call for U.S. President Barack Obama and other world leaders to step up efforts toward making a nuclear weapons free world.

(READ MORE: Atom bomb survivors are still fighting against nuclear development in Japan)

More than 40,000 people attended Thursday’s ceremony at Hiroshima’s peace park near the epicenter of the 1945 attack that killed 140,000 people. Another bombing of Nagasaki three days later killed more than 70,000, causing Japan’s surrender six days later.

Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said that as the sole country to face nuclear attack, Japan has the duty to push for nuclear weapons elimination.

The anniversary comes as Japan is divided over Abe’s push to pass unpopular legislation to expand the country’s military role internationally.