Kate del Castillo causes a stir for her appearance during a presentation in New York: “I didn’t recognize her”

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An “atomic mushroom” in New York to raise awareness of the nuclear danger

New York, May 17 (EFE).- An inflatable mushroom cloud was raised this Tuesday in the iconic New York square of Times Square to raise the conscience of passers-by against nuclear weapons, because “as a civilization, we have to choose between banning nuclear weapons atomic or cease to exist”, warns its creator, the Mexican artist Pedro Reyes, at the foot of the white column. “When we started working (in 2019, on this project) we were seen as a bit crazy, as if it were a thing of the past. Unfortunately, there are still 13,000 atomic weapons in the world and today the governments that have those nuclear weapons are investing trillions of dollars in new weapons,” Reyes told Efe under the shadow that the fungus casts over the crowded square. The installation, a 9-meter-high white inflatable balloon in the shape of a nuclear cloud, is crowned with the motto “zero nuke” (zero nuclear weapons, in Spanish) written in black ink in the languages ​​of the countries with nuclear weapons: United States, Russia, China, United Kingdom, France, Israel, India, Pakistan and North Korea. “CIVIL MOBILIZATION AS A SOLUTION” “With today’s political context, which is extremely volatile, the risk of a mistake, an accident or a bad decision that, moreover, falls on a handful of people, could have consequences that are nothing more and nothing less than the end of life on earth,” says Reyes. In front of his work, which does not stop wobbling due to the strong wind blowing over the island of Manhattan today, Reyes insists on the importance of civil mobilization, because – he explains – the end of nuclear weapons “will only be achieved if there is pressure from society, if we inform ourselves and express our indignation and our rejection of the cruelest and most harmful invention of the human being”. “It is important that we make this desire visible. As a civilization we have to choose between banning atomic weapons or ceasing to exist,” he said, before once again emphasizing that disarmament “is not going to come from the governments that have nuclear weapons, only it can come from society demanding through this culture change that weapons be banned and supporting “civilian” organisations. One of these NGOs, the Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons (ICAN), was present at the inauguration of the work, which will continue to stand in the square until May 24. “A REALLY DANGEROUS TIME” ICAN Executive Director Beatrice Fihn, who received the Nobel Peace Prize on behalf of the organization in 2017, returned to the idea of ​​the nuclear threat currently casting its shadow over the planet. “With Russia’s threat to use nuclear weapons, we are in a really dangerous moment, with great concern about nuclear escalation. The invasion of Ukraine has shown the whole world what the reality of nuclear weapons is: that we are all hostages of the whims of a few men from nine countries,” he said at the presentation. Director Mitchie Takeuchi, a descendant of survivors of the nuclear attack on Hiroshima, was also present. “The nuclear bomb detonations in Hiroshima and Nagasaki are often portrayed with the image of a huge mushroom cloud as we are reminded of here in Times Square today. But, I always felt the image was impersonal and abstract, and intentionally it didn’t represent anything about the monster violence or what happened under the mushroom cloud,” he said. Takeuchi, creator of the documentary “The Vow From Hiroshima”, about the life of the activist and survivor of the August 6, 1945 attack Setsuko Thurlow, recalled that she spent her childhood in a city under a mushroom cloud, and therefore said that he felt a “responsibility to share a lesser-known side of history, the story of profound human suffering.” The work, which was already exhibited in the Mexican square of Tlatelolco, to commemorate the treaty of the same name signed in 1967 to establish the denuclearization of Latin America and the Caribbean, will also travel to the headquarters of the Nobel Prize winners in Norway and to Vienna, where The 86 signatory countries of the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons, which entered into force in January 2021, will soon meet. Jorge Fuentelsaz (c) Agencia EFE

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Kate del Castillo causes a stir for her appearance during a presentation in New York: “I didn’t recognize her”

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