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Bike for Peace tour / South Africa ratifies the TPNW

Scottish CND welcomes the formal launch in the Palace of Westminster of the latest global tour by the Norwegian group 'Bike for Peace'.

South Africa yesterday became the 22nd state to formally ratify the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons. South Africa is the only country in the world to have had a nuclear weapons programme, to then dismantle it and to become a leading member of the growing coalition to prohibit all nuclear weapons.

Bike for Peace was established in 1978 by Tore Naerland, a 90% blind peace campaigner who rides on a tandem bike and has organised many bike tours which have brought communities from both sides of conflict areas together. They also promote in other tours the values of peace and their core wish of supporting strategies to achieve a nuclear weapon free world.

Our friends at NFLA and Mayors for Peace have supported recent Bike for Peace tours, including its last global tour of 2014, including a tour of Scotland. The latest tour will commence with a special launch event in the Palace of Westminster and the core aims of the tour will be to promote the need of developing a more peaceful and nuclear weapon free world, of the positive low carbon use of cycling as a mode of transport and of seeking a greater role for the United Nations in the debate over reducing the global stockpile of nuclear weapons. 

The bike tour comes at a time of great political challenge in the UK and an increasing and concerning amount of unilateral measures in the nuclear weapons field, such as both the United States and Russia suspending the INF treaty. 

With South Africa signing the Treaty on Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons it is expected that the treaty will become international law later this year or early 2020. Scottish CND call on other nuclear weapon states like the UK Government to follow in the footsteps of South Africa's transformation to become a nuclear disarmament champion.