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     Scottish CND      Magazine

Britain votes against disarmament

In a recent debate in the House of Commons the foreign office minister Tony Lloyd made a wonderful speech about how the Labour Government was going to press for nuclear disarmament:

Our approach to multilateral disarmament will not be grudging and it will not be one that plays up the obstacles to progress in order to leave things as they are. We intend to be a constructive actor in the process, using our influence to move things forward where we can.

Fine words, but not to be taken too seriously of course. Only days after this speech the British Government was voting against a major proposal for multilateral nuclear disarmament when it came before the United Nations General Assembly. Over 70 % of the member countries in the UN voted for the resolution which called for talks leading to a convention which would ban nuclear weapons. But this was too much for our New Labour Government to stomach. Along with the US, France and Russia, they voted against.

The US and Russia proposed a narrower approach which would involved only themselves. Our government supported this narrow view and in doing so revealed their true position. For Tony Blair, multilateral disarmament only applies to Russia and the US, it has nothing to do with us.

This government is not rushing to include Trident in international negotiations. At any sign that Trident might be included they are doing all they can to stall and obstruct those nations, the majority at the UN, who want to see genuine progress towards getting rid of these weapons of mass destruction.

The media are all too quick to talk about how other countries are queuing up to build the bomb or covertly trying to produce these dreadful weapons. The reality is most other countries want to see an end to nuclear weapons - and it is our government which is standing in the way of a nuclear free world.

Scottish CND      Magazine