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Scottish CND letter to BBC

Scottish CND have written to the BBC asking for fair coverage of the forthcoming Nuclear Weapons Ban talks in New York in a few weeks time.

Below is the letter sent by Scottish CND:

I am chair of the Scottish Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament and we are currently working on a number of nuclear weapons related issues.

One of the most important strands of our work at the present time is raise awareness of UN based discussions aimed at bringing about a Global Nuclear Weapons Ban Treaty.

These discussions are due to take place at the UN in New York between June 15 - July 7 .

The discussions are taking place following a vote in the United Nations General Assembly in December 2016 to convene a conference in 2017 to negotiate a legally binding instrument to prohibit nuclear weapons leading towards their total elimination.

Who opposes Trident Replacement?

If you are planning to raise the subject of Trident replacement with candidates during the General Election campaign you might find the following information useful.

Four of the current party leaders at Westminster voted against Trident replacement. 

• Angus Robertson- SNP 

• Jeremy Corbyn- Labour

• Tim Farron- Lib Dem

• Caroline Lucas - Green 

Only Theresa May, the Conservative leader, voted for Trident replacement. 

As our Chair, Arthur West says,'Thank goodness that the vast majority of Westminster party leaders have the good sense to oppose Trident replacement!'

General Elections Statement

Scottish CND have issued a statement in response to the recent announcement of a General Election.

The statement reads as follows:

Complacency about nuclear risks is now turning to concern among voters who had come to believe that nuclear weapons were history. This General Election is an opportunity to look critically at the policies of the parties seeking our votes.

Scotland will be the number one target in Europe outside of Russia if we are dragged into a war. The Faslane base just 30 miles from Glasgow has the biggest concentration of nuclear firepower. With Trump in control of the US arsenal, we are in a period of great uncertainty. Scotland's best defence is to be known for its peace and disarmament work. Instead with Trident we are known as the place where the British state keeps its nuclear bombs so that it can pose as a big power.

The British Conservative Government recently announced that it would be prepared to make a 'pre - emptive' strike and use the Trident bombs to launch an attack first, killing millions of civilians. That support for first - use creates a frightening breeding ground for mistrust and miscalculation. Don't let Scotland be part of this. Use your vote wisely.

Funeral Announcement: Frances Mildmay

Have received some sad news that Frances Mildmay from the United Nations Association had passed away . Frances will be known in a number of networks.

Funeral is on Friday May 5 at 230pm in Glasgow Crematorium at 19 Chester Road Maryhill Glasgow G2

Regards Arthur West 

 

Scottish CND at Scottish Trade Union Conference

Scottish CND have been out and about at the annual Scottish Trade Union Congress in Aviemore .

The Congress took place between April 24 - April 26 .

cottish CND had an information stall at the congress and we are pleased to note that many delegates showed an interest in the leaflets and materials available on the stall.

Arthur West chair of Scottish CND highlighted the case against Trident renewal at a number of meetings and events which took place at the congress.

Congress delegates were also given information on the forthcoming United Nations Global Nuclear Weapons Ban Treaty talks -during the final session of the Congress.

 

The UN start of banning nuclear weapons

By the last day of the first session of the UN Nuclear Ban Treaty discussions in New York, there was an exuberant excitement in the room at the enormous significance of what is under way. 

132 UN Member states participated in this meeting to agree the elements for a nuclear weapons ban treaty. This important treaty is a real step towards general and complete disarmament, leading to peace, security, and human rights.  It is not an end itself, but an major tool.

UK protest at the UN Ban Treaty discussions

Over 120 UN states have started this week the negotiations to develop a legally binding instrument for the prohibition of nuclear weapons, along the lines of the bans on chemical weapons and landmines.

The UK Government decided to use its access to the United Nation, not to enter the discussion, but to join the US ambassador in a protest outside the room.

Despite the desperate efforts of nuclear countries to boycott this process it is clear that there is a worldwide support for the treaty. You can watch the discussions live here (keep in mind the time zone difference). 

UK's statements had the following points:

UK set to Join US Protest Against Historic Nuke Ban Negotiations

Concern over marginalisation of Scottish support for UN Treaty

As negotiations on a new international treaty to prohibit nuclear weapons start today at the UN in New York, supported by an overwhelming majority of member states, the UK is likely to join US ambassador to the UN, Nikki Haley, today a media briefing critical of the treaty plan.

Neither the US nor the UK will participate in the negotiations which are backed by over 120 UN states and which aim to develop a legally binding instrument for the prohibition of nuclear weapons, along the lines of the bans on chemical weapons and landmines. The reality of the horrific consequences of nuclear weapons  has been fundamental to the worldwide civil society pressure which led 123 of the world's nations to vote last October for the negotiations to begin.

Hiroshima survivors to visit Scotland as UN nuke ban talks get underway

Two survivors of the US atomic bomb attack on the Japanese city of Hiroshima will visit Scotland as the critical UN negotiations for a nuclear ban treaty enter their third day.

Reiko Yamada and Midori Yamada will visit Scotland next week as part of the Hibakusha 2017 tour. The tour is timed to coincide with the start of the United Nations negotiations on putting a Global Nuclear Weapons Ban Treaty in place. These important talks take place after a historic vote in favour of a treaty at the United Nations General Assembly by 123 countries at the end of last year.

These two women were direct witnesses to the horrific consequences of nuclear weapons and their visit to Scotland is very welcome.

Wed 29th of March

The survivors will meet Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon and have a tour of the Scottish Parliament.

Thu 30th of March

They will travel to Faslane and Coulport to observe the nuclear bases and will visit Faslane Peace Camp. Members and supporters can join them at the Peace Camp at 3 pm for some tea at the cherry tree planted by a previous Hibakusha visitor thirty years ago.

A nuclear free independent Scotland

Statement on independence referendum 

Scottish CND welcomes the First Minister's move to hold a second independence referendum. Brexit is a clear example of the Prime Minister's disregard for the democratically expressed opinions of the Scottish people, as is the UK Government's decision to boycott negotiations for the United Nations treaty to

ban nuclear weapons. The conference is starting in two weeks in New York , and instead of participating, the UK. Government chooses to go ahead with the modernisation of nuclear weapons which are all based in Scotland against the will of our democratically elected representatives at both Holyrood and Westminster. We look forward to working for a free and independent Scotland and the end of UK nuclear weapons based here - or anywhere.

Background note on statement

At its AGM in 2012 Scottish CND agreed to support Scottish independence and further confirmed this position at the 2016 AGM. Scottish CND see this is as our best opportunity for nuclear disarmament as we have shown in our two reports - Trident - nowhere to go and Disarming Trident. Removing nuclear weapons in Scotland would be a major contribution to ensuring nuclear disarmament in the UK. We will continue to work on a cross party and no party basis with all who are committed to nuclear disarmament. We will also continue to work with Civic Society organisations and the Trade Union movement in pursuing our goal of Scottish, UK and global nuclear disarmament.