In Powerful Gesture, Obama Will Be The First Sitting President To Visit Hiroshima

It's one of many firsts for President Obama.

President Barack Obama is planning to visit Hiroshima at the end of the month, making him the only sitting president to ever visit the site of the world's first atomic bombing. 

Obama's visit, which is scheduled for May 27, was announced by the White House on Tuesday. His visit will follow the Group of 7 economic summit planned that week in Ise-Shima. Aides from the White House have emphasized that Obama will not be apologizing for the world's first combat detonation of an atomic bomb in 1945.

"The President will make a historic visit to Hiroshima with Prime Minister Abe to highlight his continued commitment to pursuing the peace and security of a world without nuclear weapons," the White House said in a statement.

Disarming the southeast region of the world, where North Korea is believed to have nuclear capabilities, has been a big focus of Obama's administration since he was inaugurated. Though he's had little success, his efforts stand in stark contrast to methods proposed by Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump, who suggested removing American troops from the region and having South Korea and Japan arm themselves with nuclear weapons. 

The move is one of several firsts for Obama, who was the first sitting president to visit a federal prison, the first to go to Cuba in 88 years, the first to visit Ethiopia, the first to visit the Artic, the first to visit Myanmar, and even the first president to headline the music festival South by Southwest.  

Cover photo: Alex Wong / Getty Images.


Subscribe to our newsletter and get the latest news and exclusive updates.