AN independent Scotland would rid itself of the “moral disgrace” of nuclear weapons, according to the Scottish Greens.

Speaking on the 78th anniversary of the first atomic bomb being dropped on Hiroshima in 1945, Greens MSP Gillian Mackay said that post-independence Scotland must join the 92 other countries who have already signed an international treaty banning nuclear weapons.

“Nuclear weapons are a moral disgrace and have no place in any kind of peaceful or progressive vision for Scotland,” she said.

“The bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki left a horrific legacy, killing tens of thousands of people. They were among the worst atrocities that have ever been committed.

"There are far more nuclear warheads in the world today than there were in 1945, and they are far more powerful and destructive.

“The vast majority of MSPs do not want nuclear weapons to be based here in Scotland. However, we do not have the power to remove them.”

READ MORE: Scotland marks anniversary of Hiroshima and Nagasaki nuclear bombings

The bombing in Hiroshima is estimated to have killed around 140,000 of the city’s 350,000 residents, with hundreds of thousands more suffering severe burns, disfigurements and poisoning due to the impacts of radiation.

In Nagasaki, at least 74,000 people are thought to have died.

On Sunday, vigils were held in various locations across Scotland to mark the tragic day.

Japan remains a staunch supporter of nuclear disarmament.

Prime minister, Fumio Kishida, condemned recent comments from senior Russian official Dmitry Medvedev in which he stated that Russia could be “forced” to use a nuclear weapon if the Ukrainian counteroffensive succeeds.

“Japan, as the only nation to have suffered atomic bombings in war, will continue efforts towards a nuclear-free world,” said Kishida at a ceremony in Hiroshima on Sunday.

“The path towards it is becoming increasingly difficult because of deepening divisions in the international community over nuclear disarmament and Russia’s nuclear threat.”

READ MORE: Protesters interrupt race at UCI Cycling World Championships

Getting rid of nuclear weapons, which are currently housed in Scotland, has long been a demand of many within the Yes movement.

The SNP’s official policy is to remove them from Scottish territory as soon as possible after independence – a commitment the Greens support.

Mackay added: “Both the Tory government and the so-called Labour opposition in Westminster have committed to spending even more on these appalling weapons.

“The eye watering sums involved would be far better used on lifting people out of poverty and tackling the greatest security threat we face, the climate emergency.

"If we are to prevent this kind of devastation and protect future generations then we need to reduce existing nuclear stockpiles around the world.

“I await the day when an independent Scotland can take its place on the world stage and join the 92 other nations who have already signed the nuclear weapon ban."

Among the countries to have signed the United Nations’ Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons are Brazil, New Zealand, Austria and Ireland.

However, the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute recently noted an increase in the number of nuclear warheads globally – bringing an end to the period of gradual decline seen since the end of the Cold War.