U.N. Secretary General Antonio Guterres will not attend a service commemorating the 1945 nuclear attack on Hiroshima this year amid ongoing travel restrictions due to the coronavirus pandemic, his spokesman indicated Friday.
The chance of Guterres visiting the western Japan city for the 75th anniversary of the atomic bombing this year is very low, said spokesman Stephane Dujarric.
The U.N. chief told a press conference on Thursday that it is unrealistic to predict his participation in the ceremony in Hiroshima, given ongoing uncertainties caused by the pandemic.
In 2018, Guterres became the first sitting U.N. head to attend Nagasaki's memorial service for the atomic bombing that occurred three days after the Hiroshima attack on Aug. 6, 1945.
Former U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki Moon was the first sitting U.N. chief to participate in an A-bomb ceremony when he joined the event in 2010 in Hiroshima, a city Guterres has not yet visited in his current capacity.