Please be advised that the 7th revision of the NPT Statement below has been sent to the Prime Minister, the Minister of Foreign Affairs and to the Non-Proliferation and Disarmament (Nuclear) Division (IDN) of the Dept. of Foreign Affairs. I am happy to report that 37 groups have endorsed this Statement, including the nascent group which I’ve started, the Brampton Coalition for Peace and Justice (BCPJ).
Civil Society Groups call for Canadian action at upcoming
Non-proliferation Treaty Preparatory Meeting
The Current Situation
We remain faced each day with the threat of 27,000 nuclear weapons, of which over 4,000 are capable of being used in under 30 minutes.
On January 4, 2007, George P Shultz, Wm. J. Perry, Henry A Kissinger and Sam Nunn, all American citizens with extensive political and military experience, called for the United States to show leadership and work energetically in defining steps toward a world free from nuclear weapons. This statement notes the ineffectiveness of traditional deterrence policies as a response to the threat posed by recent acquisitions (or threats thereof) of nuclear weapons by North Korea and Iran. They comment further that “non-state terrorist groups with nuclear weapons are conceptually outside the bounds of a deterrent strategy and present difficult new security challenges”. Others remain deeply concerned about the magnitude of the threat maintained by the United States and Russia for between them they possess over 95% of the nuclear weapons in the world. These two states retain launch-on-warning policies which radically increase the danger of use in the event of computer error, human error or terrorist access to communications or launch software.
On 17 January 2007, the Board of The Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists moved the “Doomsday Clock” from 7 minutes to 5 minutes before midnight. They included in their reasons the fact that the potential for “an accidental or inadvertent nuclear exchange between the United States and Russia remains, with both countries anachronistically maintaining more than 1,000 warheads on high alert, ready to launch within tens of minute” and the continuing possibility of an exchange between other nuclear-armed states, and the new risks posed by access to unsecured fissile materials by nuclear terrorists. Recent climate model simulations indicate that the explosion of only a small portion of the global nuclear arsenal would have devastating consequences, including significant climatic affects.
The NPT PrepCom Opportunity
We look forward to the upcoming Preparatory Committee Meetings under the Non-proliferation Treaty (NPT PrepCom) scheduled to occur in Vienna April 30th to May 11th, 2007. This provides all states with the opportunity to plan carefully for actions to lessen the threat posed by nuclear weapons.
This is an opportunity for the Canadian government to show leadership at this critical forum. We encourage the Government to continue active support for the nuclear disarmament agenda as set out in the commitments made in the 1995 and 2000 Review Conferences.
In preparation for the NPT PrepCom deliberations, Canada should speak out at the Nuclear Suppliers Group meeting in April against the proposed India-US nuclear technology proposal as this deal is a clear breach of Article I of the Non-Proliferation Treaty.
During the course of the PrepCom, the Government should:
a) urge all Nuclear Weapons states to “develop concrete plans – with specific timetables – for implementing their disarmament commitments” as called for by former Secretary General Annan on Nov. 28, 2006;
b) call for urgent reductions of non-strategic nuclear weapons, and encourage unilateral action by NATO in eliminating its nuclear weapons in compliance with the obligations of NATO states under the NPT; (In 2000, all States Parties to the NPT agreed to the “13 Practical Steps”, Step 9 of which set out agreement to develop measures to “further reduce the operational status of nuclear weapons systems…” and have a “diminishing role for nuclear weapons in security policies to minimize the risk that these weapons ever be used and to facilitate the process of their total elimination”.)
c) facilitate or be open to support a diplomatic solution to the crisis with Iran;
d) intensify Canada’s advocacy for the Entry-into-Force of the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty;
e) intensify its advocacy for international support of the NPT institutional strengthening package proposed by Canada at the 2005 NPT Review conference, including calls for annual meetings, regular reporting and improved NGO access to NPT meetings;
f) host discussions on means of integrating Israel, India, and Pakistan (and re-integrating North Korea) into the NPT perhaps exploring transitional measures to provide them with associate status within the regime, and build toward a consensus in support of preserving the Nuclear Suppliers’ Group principle that makes civilian nuclear cooperation conditional on adherence to full-scope safeguards;
g) host a discussion of the risks posed by current Russian and American launch-on-warning policies in order to develop policy alternatives that would eliminate this risk; and
h) fund the participation of representatives of key non-governmental organizations within the NPT PrepCom to encourage disarmament education of these individuals and the groups they represent .
These actions will enable this Government to continue Canada’s international leadership within the NPT in the reduction of threats posed by nuclear weapons.
Canadian Network to Abolish Nuclear Weapons
#208, 145 Spruce
Ottawa, ON K1R 6P1
Phone: (613) 233-1982
FAX: (613) 233-9028
6 March 2007
CNANW member groups endorsing this Statement:
Canadian Federation of University Women
Canadian Peace Alliance
Canadian Pugwash Group
Canadian Voice of Women for Peace
Lawyers for Social Responsibility
Physicians for Global Survival
Project Ploughshares (Canada)
Religions for Peace Canada
Science for Peace
Veterans Against Nuclear Arms (Canada)
Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom (Canada)
World Federalist Movement – Canada
Other groups endorsing this Statement:
Boundary Peace Initiative
Brampton Coalition for Peace and Justice (BCPJ)
Canadian Council for International Cooperation
Canadian Student Young Pugwash
Humanist Movement in Canada
Kootenay Region Branch of the United Nations Association in Canada
Lethbridge Network for Peace
Pacific Campaign for Disarmament & Security (Resource Office, Canada)
Pacific People’s Partnership
Parkdale United Church, Faith and Justice Committee
People Against Weapons in Space
Peace and Social Concerns Committee, Ottawa Monthly Meeting of Friends
Project Ploughshares Calgary
Project Ploughshares Edmonton
Project Ploughshares Fredericton
Project Ploughshares Kawartha
Project Ploughshares Ottawa
Project Peacemakers (Winnipeg)
St. Mark’s Anglican Church Committee, Kaslo, BC
Salmon Arm Kairos Peace and Justice Committee
The Simons Foundation St. Mark’s Anglican Church Committee, Kalso, BC
Toronto Hiroshima Day Coalition
Union of Spiritual Communities of Christ
Veterans Against Nuclear Arms, ON-QUE Region