This year, 6 and 9 August mark the 71st anniversary of the bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, two Japanese cities destroyed by atomic bombs with a combined death toll estimated at more than 225,000 people.
Owen Smith, the absurdly self-described “unity candidate” for the Labour leadership, will be one of many Labour MPs voting in favour of the Trident nuclear weapons system today. Indeed, he has already gone further. Yesterday, he gave an explicit “yes” to the question of whether he would be willing to deploy nuclear weapons as Prime Minister.
When is the right time to ban a very bad thing? Nations have faced the question in banning slavery, torture, chemical weapons and more. Over one hundred governments and civil society organisations including the World Council of Churches are debating the question again at a UN working group on nuclear weapons.
The UN Open-ended Working Group has completed its second session (13 May 2016) on working out how to bring in new treaties that could lead to multi-lateral disarmament. The UK government is boycotting this intergovernmental meeting.
The United Nations Security Council has strongly condemned the firing of a submarine-launched ballistic missile by the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK), reiterating that such activities increase tension in the region and beyond.
Seventy years after the devastating atomic bombing of Hiroshima, US Secretary of State John Kerry has made a commemorative visit to the Hiroshima Peace Park, making him the most senior US official to have ever done so.
Following the recent nuclear test conducted by North Korea, the World Council of Churches (WCC) is calling on all parties involved in the current situation on the Korean peninsula to invest in initiatives to reduce tensions and for peaceful co-existence on the Korean peninsula.