ICAN: Staunch campaigners for an end to nuclear weapons

Posted October 08, 2017

ICAN co-founder Tilman Ruff - who is now winning the prestigious prize for the second time - has called on Australia to oppose nuclear weapons, particularly in the face of North Korea's escalating missile and nuclear tests and US President Donald Trump's inflammatory pro-war rhetoric.

The International Campaign for Abolition of Nuclear weapons (ICAN) yesterday received Nobel Peace Prize, following nearly letter last wills of Swede Alfred Nobel.

Beatrice Fihn, executive director of the Geneva-based International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons, told reporters that "we can't threaten to indiscriminately slaughter hundreds of thousands of civilians in the name of security".

ICAN leader Beatrice Fihn said she wants to see a Norwegian signature on the Nuclear Weapon Ban Treaty.

The United States, which with Russian Federation has the biggest stockpile of nuclear weapons, had said that the treaty would do nothing to alleviate the possibility of nuclear conflict and might even increase it.

"But we have to be realistic", she admits.

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But in celebrating the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons (ICAN) they sent a strong message about the world's concerns over nuclear escalation.

The leaders of the United States and North Korea have been in the midst of an escalating war of words; Trump has threatened to rain "fire and fury" on the country; while Kim Jong-un has called Trump a "dotard".

"One of the flaws with the treaty is that it doesn't address the reasons that states have nuclear weapons in the first place".

Mr Nash says superpowers like the USA need to lead from the front - and he has a message for President Trump.

An worldwide group dedicated to eliminating nuclear weapons won the Nobel Peace Prize on Friday, a recognition of efforts to avoid nuclear conflict at a time of heightened atomic menace.

The treaty will enter into force after it has been ratified by 50 parties.

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The agreement struck in 2015 between Iran and world powers drastically curbed Tehran s nuclear enrichment capability in return for a lifting of punishing economic sanctions.

It officially launched in Vienna, Austria, in April 2007 during the Non-Proliferation Treaty preparatory committee meeting.

"We live in a world of tension and it is becoming abundantly clear that nuclear weapons do not make us safer but are themselves a source of fear and dispute".

The International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons (ICAN), which the Nobel committee rewarded for its efforts to consign the atomic bomb to history, was a key player in the treaty's adoption by 122 countries at the United Nations in July.

"The belief of some governments that nuclear weapons are a legitimate and essential source of security is not only misguided, but also unsafe, for it incites proliferation and undermines disarmament". "Now more than ever we need a world without nuclear weapons", United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres tweeted. The disconnect between public opinion and policies in place is reflected in other North Atlantic Treaty Organisation nations without their own nuclear weapons, as well.

All of them, including Canada, fell in line - an uncomfortable stance for the Trudeau government given this country's traditional role as an advocate of disarmament and a pioneer in agreements to ban other types of destructive weapons, such as landmines.

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