For Immediate Release
Nuclear Abolitionists From Across the Globe Convene to Demand a Nuclear Free Future
WASHINGTON - Nuclear weapons abolitionists from around the world will gather for an international conference on Sunday June 18. The conference, organized by the international Peace & Planet Network will be held as representatives of the majority of the world’s governments meet at the United Nations to finalize the Convention on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons.
The conference will be held on June 18 from 1-6 p.m. at the Brooklyn Friends Meeting, 110 Schemerhorn St., in Brooklyn, N.Y.
Speakers will include leading nuclear disarmament, peace, justice and environmental speakers from eight nations: United States, France, India, Israel, Japan, Kazakhstan, Marshall Islands and New Zealand. Building on the “humanitarian consequences” foundation that led to the Convention negotiations at the United Nations, the conference’s opening speakers will include a Hiroshima A-bomb survivor, a leading immigrant rights and anti-Islamophobia advocate, and an indigenous elder. The conference includes four panels: Humanitarian Consequences, Causes and Effects, Youth Organizing for Nuclear Disarmament, and The Ban Treaty and Beyond.
Speaking on behalf of the conference organizers, Dr. Joseph Gerson of the American Friends Service Committee said “Despite their promises, the world’s nuclear powers are all upgrading their nuclear arsenals. The United States is on track to send $1.2 trillion for new nuclear weapons and their delivery systems. This only increases the dangers of miscalculation or accidental nuclear war.” To finally achieve the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty’s promise of ‘good faith negotiations’ for the complete elimination of their nuclear arsenals, “we need to build the cooperation of international movements, to recognize the integration of nuclear weapons, peace, justice and environmental issues, and unite our movements.”
“The process that initiated negotiations for a ban on nuclear weapons has raised awareness of the catastrophic consequences of nuclear weapons,” said Jackie Cabasso of the Western States Legal Foundation. “But to garner enough power to be successful, it must make common cause with those working for a world that is more fair, more democratic, and more ecologically sustainable.”
Sally Jones, President of Peace Action New York State, one of the lead organizers observed that “this conference will offer an array of views that can provide a starting point for the discussion as we seek to place the moment that has brought us to negotiations for a nuclear weapons ban in a broader context, and to look beyond and outside the negotiations among governments to the kinds of movements we must build.”
The Peace & Planet international network was founded in 2014. It brought more than 10,000 activists and 8 million petition signatures from across the world to the 2015 Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty Review Conference at the United Nations. Comprised of more than 50 organization from more than 20 nations, it has since organized panels and activities in the United States, Canada, Europe and Japan.
The American Friends Service Committee is a practical expression of the faith of the Religious Society of Friends (Quakers). Committed to the principles of nonviolence and justice, it seeks in its work and witness to draw on the transforming power of love, human and divine.