Even after seeking a meeting with Prime Minister Shinzo Abe for months, atomic bomb survivor and anti-nuclear activist Setsuko Thurlow will return home to Canada frustrated after being turned down.

The 86-year-old hibakusha was hoping to urge Abe to have Japan sign the U.N. Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons.

“Is he that busy, or does he not want to meet with me?” Thurlow, who is currently visiting Japan, asked at a news conference in Tokyo on Dec. 6. “Listening to someone who has a different viewpoint from his own is what it takes to be a real leader, doesn't it?”

Thurlow, a member of the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons (ICAN), which was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 2017, had requested a meeting with Abe and Foreign Minister Taro Kono since early October.

But her wish was not granted “as a result of adjusting schedules and other things,” according to government officials.

Instead, Thurlow met with Yasutoshi Nishimura, deputy chief Cabinet secretary, at the prime minister's office in Tokyo on the same day.

“It is absolutely heartbreaking that Japan, the nation that was hit by nuclear bombings, has not signed the treaty and is not willing to take a step to do so,” Thurlow told Nishimura.

She handed him a letter addressed to Abe urging the government to approve the treaty.

Thurlow suffered through the atomic bombing in Hiroshima on Aug. 6, 1945. Criticizing the government for having declared its opposition to signing the treaty, she wrote in the letter, “I feel betrayed as an atomic bomb survivor. Japan has given up on its imperative duties.

“I request that Japan break from its dependence on the nuclear deterrent and deepen true conversation and consultation, not as a fake mediator, with atomic bomb survivors and civil society organizations.”