Sometime in the next two weeks the UN General Assembly will vote on an historic resolution mandating the launch in 2017 of negotiations to outlaw nuclear weapons.
In the words of former Canadian Disarmament Ambassador and RI President Peggy Mason:
The threat of a catastrophic nuclear war is dangerously high and growing. The negotiation to be authorized by this resolution is our best hope to start moving back from the nuclear brink.
A recent Ceasefire.ca blog post described the previous vote on this resolution on October 24th in the First Committee of the United Nations, which passed with 123 in favour, 23 against, and 16 abstentions.
To our shame, Canada was one of the countries voting NO, along with nuclear weapons states USA, Russia, France, Israel, and the UK and most, but not all, NATO member countries. (Note that nuclear-armed China and Pakistan abstained, while North Korea voted for the resolution.)
Now our government has another chance to put this right. Please take a moment to email Prime Minister Trudeau at PM@pm.gc.ca and Foreign Minister Dion at email@example.com with the following message:
We call on Canada to vote YES to resolution L.41 which mandates the negotiation of a treaty to ban nuclear weapons and we further urge Canada to participate fully in these historic negotiations, once launched.
You might also want to copy NDP Foreign Affairs critic Hélène Laverdière at firstname.lastname@example.org; Green Party leader Elizabeth May at Elizabeth.May@parl.gc.ca ; and email@example.com (so we can monitor progress on this vital issue). Note that, in addition to participating in the demonstration, the NDP pressed the government in Question Period to vote YES.
For a comprehensive review of UN nuclear disarmament efforts over the past year, click States Divided on Nuclear Disarmament Initiative (Paul Meyer, Jane’s Intelligence Review, 1 December 2016).
See also our second UPDATE to our blog on the Legacy of Fidel Castro.
Photo credit: Ottawa Committee for Nuclear Disarmament demonstration on 5 December 2016.