Hiroshima and Nagasaki 70 Years After the Atomic Bombings

On August 6, 1945, the US dropped the atomic bomb on Hiroshima, the first nuclear weapon to be used in war, killing about 140,000 by the end of the year, out of the 350,000 who lived in the city.

Three days later, a second atomic bomb was dropped on Nagasaki. Below are 15 vintage photos of the aftermath of the Hiroshima and Nagasaki bombings and pictures of the same locations today.

The Atomic Bomb Dome, now a UN World Heritage Site, has become the iconic image of Hiroshima. In this 1 July, 2015 photo, a visitor photographs the Atomic Bomb Dome in Hiroshima, western Japan.
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Photo: AP

Two people walk on a cleared path through the destruction resulting from the 6 August detonation of the first atomic bomb in Hiroshima, western Japan.
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Photo: AP

A new city rose from the ashes, however, and it is now a buzzing modern metropolis.
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Photo: AP

In this 8 August, 1945 file photo, soldiers and civilians walk through the grim remains of Hiroshima, two days after the atomic bomb explosion. The building on left with columned facade was the Hiroshima Bank. To its right, with arched front entrance, was the Sumitomo Bank
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Photo: AP

The explosion instantly killed more than 60,000 people, with ten of thousands others dying later from effects of the radioactive fallout. By the end of 1945, 140,000 people had died as a result of the bomb, out of a city of 350,000. Today, the population of Hiroshima has risen to 1.2million.
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Photo: AP

It was rumoured nothing would grow in the city at first, but then, the next spring, the flowers began to bloom again – and people decided to return to the devastated city and rebuild.
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Photo: AP

The gutted Hiroshima Prefectural Industrial Promotion Hall – now known as the A-Bomb Dome or the Hiroshima Peace Memorial – after the bombing on 6 August 1945, and the same location near Aioi Bridge in 2015.
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Photo: Toshio Kawamoto/Yoshio Kawamoto/Reuters/Issei Kato

The etched outline of a passerby that was imprinted on the Yorozuyo Bridge after the heat of the bomb. This was 860 metres from the centre of the blast; the asphalt was scorched everywhere except the light area, which was shielded by their body. Today, the bridge has been tiled over.
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Photo: Shigeo Hayashi/Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum/Reuters/Issei Kato

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