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Kazakhstan Joins UN & Nuclear Powers to Condemn North Korea

By Jamshed Baruah

NEW YORK (IDN) - Taking its mandate as non-permanent member of the Security Council for 2017-2018 seriously, Kazakhstan's Ministry of Foreign Affairs in a statement on February 12 said that it “strongly condemns” the ballistic missile launch conducted by DPRK-Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (North Korea) the same day.

The launch was “a blatant violation of the relevant UN Security Council resolution". North Korea is barred under United Nations resolutions from using ballistic missile technology, but six sets of UN sanctions since Pyongyang’s first nuclear test in 2006 have failed to rein in its drive for atomic weapons.

Forthcoming UN Conference Underlines Resistance to Nukes

By Samantha Sen

LONDON (IDN) - Now that the new world order some of us were talking about threatens to collapse into a new world disorder, the emerging fear is what the U.S and Russia could agree on, rather than what they disagree about. U.S President Donald Trump and Russian President Vladimir Putin have discovered one another as political twins looking in the same direction from opposite sides – what were thought to be opposing sides anyhow. Nowhere does this union of vision appear more deadly than in the business of nuclear armament, and business it is.

Both leaders have said yes to all the weapons they have, and nodded in the direction of yet more. Both have spoken of “strengthening” their nuclear capabilities. Strengthen how much more to what end? Dire arithmetic abounds on how many times over each can destroy the world. Skip the count; once would be enough. [P37] JAPANESE TEXT VERSON PDF

The Rapidly Increasing Urgency of Nuclear Zero

By Rick Wayman*

SANTA BARBARA, CA, USA (IDN) - October 24-25, 2016, the Nuclear Age Peace Foundation brought together a small group of academics, activists and thought leaders to discuss how to shift the global discourse toward nuclear disarmament. The symposium, entitled “The Fierce Urgency of Nuclear Zero: Changing the Discourse,” discussed the current state of nuclear threats, geopolitical and psychological obstacles to nuclear zero, and the path forward.

The symposium’s final statement was delayed in order to incorporate the new political realities following the election of Donald Trump as President of the United States, which took place just two weeks after the symposium. [P36] JAPANESE TEXT VERSON PDF

An Eminent Buddhist Leader Urges Nuke Disarmament Summit

By Ramesh Jaura and Katsuhiro Asagiri

BERLIN | TOKYO (IDN) - Japanese Buddhist philosopher and peace builder Daisaku Ikeda has urged the U.S. and Russian leaders to come together for a summit meeting as soon as possible to pledge a global drift toward nuclear disarmament. The two countries together hold more than 90% of the world’s nuclear arsenal.

The advice by Ikeda, who is the President of the Soka Gakkai International (SGI) Buddhist association, is contained in his 35th annual peace proposal titled “The Global Solidarity of Youth: Ushering in a New Era of Hope” issued on January 26, 2017. [P35] JAPANESE TEXT VERSON PDF

UN Chief Guterres Committed to a Nuclear-Weapons Free World

By Jaya Ramachandran

GENEVA (IDN) - Within less than four weeks of taking office, United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres has pledged to "actively pursue the abolition of all weapons of mass destruction and the strict regulation of conventional weapons", arguing that disarmament can play an important role in ending existing conflicts and preventing the outbreak of new.

“I am committed to achieving a world free of nuclear weapons,” Guterres declared in a video message to the Geneva-based Conference on Disarmament, which opened the first segment of its three-part 2017 session on January 23.

U.S. Moves into Age of Nuclear Uncertainty – and Ignorance

By Rodney Reynolds

WASHINGTON, DC (IDN) – With the inauguration of Donald Trump as the new President on January 20, the United States moves into an age of nuclear uncertainty – and perhaps ignorance.

The frightening prospects took a bizarre turn when a day earlier Trump’s nominee for Energy Secretary, former Texas Governor Rick Perry, apparently was not aware that his department is in charge of America’s nuclear weapons.

According to an editorial in the New York Times on January 20, Perry knew only recently that "his biggest responsibilities would, in fact, involve overseeing a vast nuclear security complex that he knows almost nothing about".

Iran’s Nuke Agreement Survives Without a Shot Being Fired

By Rodney Reynolds

WASHINGTON, DC (IDN) – During the height of the U.S. presidential election campaign last year, Republican candidate Donald Trump threatened to tear up the 159-page Iran nuclear agreement on live television.

In characteristic “Trumpism”, he dismissed the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), as the agreement was formally known, as “stupid”, “a lopsided disgrace” and “the worst deal ever negotiated.”

With Trump moving into the White House on January 20, will he abide by his threats and swear by his rhetoric? Or was it all political bluster? [P34]  JAPANESE TEXT VERSON PDF

'Nuke Generation Far More Brutal Than Past Conquerors'

By Jamshed Baruah

STOCKHOLM (IDN-INPS) - "It is said that previous conquerors like Attila and Jenghiz Khan used to proclaim that not even a dog or cat or mouse would be left alive when they destroyed the cities which defied them. Our generation with the nuclear weapon in its hand is far more brutal and primitive than any of those conquerors of the past, however barbaric they might have been," declared Justice Christopher Gregory Weeramantry in an interview in 2007, some ten years before he passed away in Colombo, Sri Lanka, on January 5, aged 90.

Tributes To Justice Weeramantry As He Passes Away at 90

By Jaya Ramachandran

BERLIN (IDN) - Justice Christopher Gregory Weeramantry, legal luminary, distinguished author, and renowned pacifist, who played a crucial role in strengthening and expanding the rule of international law to usher in a nuclear-weapons free world, died in Colombo, Sri Lanka on January 5, aged 90.

He was a former judge of the Supreme Court of Sri Lanka (1967-1972), an Emeritus Professor at Monash University in Melbourne (until 1991), a Judge of the International Court of Justice (ICJ) from 1991 to 2000 and its Vice-President from 1997 to 2000, Honorary Councillor of the World Future Council, and President of the International Association of Lawyers against Nuclear Arms (IALANA).

Marshall Islands and Tony de Brum '2016 Arms Control Persons of the Year'

WASHINGTON, D.C. (IDN | INPS) - The Republic of the Marshall Islands and its former Foreign Minister, Tony de Brum, have been awarded the '2016 Arms Control Person of the Year'. Over 1,850 individuals from 63 countries participated in the selection.

Ten individuals and groups were nominated by the Arms Control Association (ACA) for their leadership in advancing effective arms control, nonproliferation, and disarmament solutions or for raising awareness of the threats posed by mass casualty weapons during the past year. The Nuclear Age Peace Foundation is a consultant to the Marshall Islands in their Nuclear Zero lawsuits.

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