August 6 – International day “Physicians for peace”


Since the mid-80s of the last century, August 6 has been considered the international day “Physicians for peace”. He became a symbol of the protest of the world medical community against developing and using of nuclear weapons.

This date was not chosen accidentally. On 6 august 1945 there was the implementation of nuclear weapons for the first time in human story. An American bomber dropped a-bomb on Hiroshima. The total number of casualties as a result of the tragedy ranged from 90 to 166 thousand people, according to different data. In three days, on 9 August the similar explosive device hit another Japanese city Nagasaki. People still suffer from those events, for example consequences of radiation sickness are appeared in one generation, and there is a factor of social discrimination against victims of bombing and their families.

Doctors were unarmed on the frontline in the struggle for lives of victims that could not remain silent and stay away. In December 1980 certain initiatives united and formed the world movement “International physicians for the prevention of nuclear war” (IPPNW). The base of IPPNW was laid by medical scientists from the Soviet Union and the USA, and the first Co-Head of the movement was an academician of the Russian Academy of Sciences Yevgeniy Chazov. Members of the organization were more than 200 thousand of medics from different countries.

The movement spoke out for the removal of nuclear tests, prohibit of nuclear arms race and creature the qualitatively new form of international cooperation, based on trust. The position of medics was aimed at that costs, which were spent on drafting and testing of nuclear weapons, should be sent on the development of medicine and improving social conditions of life. In the mid-80s the International day “Physicians for peace” was approved by the IPPNW initiative and the decision of its Executive Committee.

Now this day is not celebrated only by medics, as much as carrying citizens and organizations from different parts of the world join to. The theme-based actions, lections, seminars, symposiums were held. Obviously that is the tragic date for inhabitants of Hiroshima, Nagasaki and all of Japan.

The memorial to the victims of bombing was installed in the park of Peace in Hiroshima with the symbolic inscription:”Sleep well, the mistake will never happen again”. And social initiatives similar to IPPNW are very important to keep the promise and never again allow such crimes.