Peace Groups Back New Resolution in General Assembly

October 27, 2004

The UN General Assembly, representing every government in the world, is meeting now to discuss nuclear disarmament A large number of resolutions demanding global nuclear disarmament will be put to it this year as every year.

However, this year, there is at least some chance that governments that usually line up with the US in not voting for these resolutions will vote for a resolution on nuclear disarmament submitted by the governments of South Africa, New Zealand, Sweden, Ireland, Brazil, Mexico, and Egypt, known as the New Agenda Coalition. The Netherlands, a staunch NATO member, has already said in response to questions asked in its parliament, that it will vote for it.

Friends of the Earth, the Australian Peace Committee, PND-WA, and CICD have written to Alexander Downer, saying that Australia should vote for this resolution, which asks that the existing nuclear weapons states abide by their well -established nuclear disarmament obligations, and urges a balance between nuclear disarmament by the weapons states and nuclear non-proliferation.

According to the groups:

" The approach by the New Agenda nuclear disarmament resolution is moderate, balanced, and anything but radical. If anything it does not go far enough. If the Australian government will not support this resolution, which in now way contradicts the resolution we do jointly
with Japan, it is hard to know what exactly we would support in the area of nuclear disarmament other than an aggressive and one - sided one based entirely on counterproliferation."

Contact:

John Hallam FOEA - 02-9567-7533 h02-9810-2598
Irene Gale AM 08-8364-2291
Jo Vallentine PND-WA 08-9272-4252