Abolition 2000 UK

To Achieve for the New Century a Global Treaty to Eliminate Nuclear Weapons

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Abolition Statement

 "I am most willing to endorse the Abolition 2000 Statement and to support the campaign calling on goverments to commit the world to the permanent elimination of nuclear weapons. In South Africa we overcame apartheid relatively peacefully, this gives us confidence that all is required to establish a nuclear free world is the will to make it happen. We can do it, I believe we are on the winning side."

Archbishop Desmond Tutu
- June 1998

Background

On April 1995, during the first weeks of the Non-Proliferation Treaty Review and Extension Conference, activists from around the world recognized that the issue of nuclear abolition was not on the agenda. Activists met together to write the following statement that has become the founding document of the Abolition 2000 Network. Over 1,200 NGOs on six continents have now signed it and are actively working in ten working groups to accomplish the eleven points listed here.

Statement

A secure and livable world for our children and grandchildren and all future generations requires that we achieve a world free of nuclear weapons and redress the environmental degradation and human suffering that is the legacy of fifty years of nuclear weapons testing and production.

Further, the inextricable link between the "peaceful" and warlike uses of nuclear technologies and the threat to future generations inherent in creation and use of long-lived radioactive materials must be recognized. We must move toward reliance on clean, safe, renewable forms of energy production that do not provide the materials for weapons of mass destruction and do not poison the environment for thousands of centuries. The true "inalienable" right is not to nuclear energy, but to life, liberty and security of person in a world free of nuclear weapons.

We recognize that a nuclear weapons free world must be achieved carefully and in a step by step manner. We are convinced of its technological feasibility. Lack of political will, especially on the part of the nuclear weapons states, is the only true barrier. As chemical and biological weapons are prohibited, so must nuclear weapons be prohibited.

We call upon all states particularly the nuclear weapons states, declared and de facto to take the following steps to achieve nuclear weapons abolition. We further urge the states parties to the NPT to demand binding commitments by the declared nuclear weapons states to implement these measures:

*   Initiate immediately and conclude negotiations on a nuclear weapons abolition convention that requires the phased elimination of all nuclear weapons within a time-bound framework, with provisions for effective verification and enforcement. *

*   Immediately make an unconditional pledge not to use or threaten to use nuclear weapons.

*   Rapidly complete a truly comprehensive test ban treaty with a zero threshold and with the stated purpose of precluding nuclear weapons development by all states.

*   Cease to produce and deploy new and additional nuclear weapons systems, and commence to withdraw and disable deployed nuclear weapons systems.

*   Prohibit the military and commercial production and reprocessing of all weapons-usable radioactive materials.

*   Subject all weapons-usable radioactive materials and nuclear facilities in all states to international accounting, monitoring, and safeguards, and establish a public international registry of all weapons-usable radioactive materials.

*   Prohibit nuclear weapons research, design, development, and testing through laboratory experiments including but not limited to non-nuclear hydrodynamic explosions and computer simulations, subject all nuclear weapons laboratories to international monitoring, and close all nuclear test sites.

*   Create additional nuclear weapons free zones such as those established by the treaties of Tlatelolco and Raratonga.

*   Recognize and declare the illegality of threat or use of nuclear weapons, publicly and before the World Court.

*   Establish an international energy agency to promote and support the development of sustainable and environmentally safe energy sources.

*   Create mechanisms to ensure the participation of citizens and NGOs in planning and monitoring the process of nuclear weapons abolition.

A world free of nuclear weapons is a shared aspiration of humanity. This goal cannot be achieved in a non-proliferation regime that authorizes the possession of nuclear weapons by a small group of states. Our common security requires the complete elimination of nuclear weapons. Our objective is definite and unconditional abolition of nuclear weapons.

* The convention should mandate irreversible disarmament measures, including but not limited to the following: withdraw and disable all deployed nuclear weapons systems; disable and dismantle warheads; place warheads and weapon-usable radioactive materials under international safeguards; destroy ballistic missiles and other delivery systems. The convention could also incorporate the measures listed above which should be implemented independently without delay. When fully implemented, the convention would replace the NPT.

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