In conjunction with the commemoration of second Soka Gakkai president Josei Toda’s Declaration Calling for the Abolition of Nuclear Weapons made on September 8, 1957, Soka Gakkai youth division held an online Soka Gakkai Youth Summit for the Renunciation of War on September 6, 2020, with some 300 Japanese youth members participating. Youth from SGI-UK were invited to join the summit and SGM youth division member Koo Wei Qian was also invited to make a report on SGM’s peace activities.
Mr Toda’s declaration is the prime point of Soka Gakkai peace activities in Japan and around the world. This year, in August and September, youth members in Japan organised a series of activities to encourage people to make a stand on renouncing war. Activities included publishing testimonies of victims of war and the atomic bombings; online sharing of testimonies and promoting the International Signnature Campaign in support of the appeal of the hibakusha for the elimination of nuclear weapons. This youth summit was the closing of this series of events.
Seventy-five years have passed since the atomic bombings and the end of the World War II; the survivors are now 83 years old in average. Hence, the participants were determined to never let these miserable memories fade away and will exert efforts to establish eternal peace.
In his message to the summit, SGI President Ikeda placed great hope on youth in expanding the network of abolition of nuclear weapons in the 21st century.
In the summit, after Youth Peace Summit chairman Mr Yamaguchi and Women Peace and Culture Summit chairman Ms Komatsu presented their speeches, right in front of the Atomic Bomb Dome, while representatives from Hiroshima introduced the bombings in Hiroshima and made vows to create peace. Chugoku region Youth Peace Summit chairman Mr Watabe and Chugoku region Women Peace and Culture Summit chairman Ms Hirai also presented their determination for peace in front of the Children’s Peace Monument.
Finally, Soka Gakkai youth division leader Akiyasu Shiga encouraged the participants, urging them to inherit President Ikeda’s fighting spirit for peace and build a network of happiness and friendship in their respective places.