Doctors, medical students target Adelaide for nuclear weapons

August 06, 2006

Medical Association for Prevention of War (Australia)

Friends of the Earth Adelaide

On Sunday 6 August, doctors, medical practitioners, students and concerned citizens will be conducting an action in Rundle Mall to mark the 61st anniversary of the atomic bombing of Hiroshima and draw attention to the continuing threat of nuclear weapons.

The action, dubbed 'Target Adelaide', is organised by the Medical Association for the Prevention of War (MAPW) and supported by Friends of the Earth Adelaide. It will be replicated in cities across the world this weekend, including London, San Salvador, Jena (Germany) and Melbourne.

"Even though the Cold War has officially ended, the threat of nuclear weapons has not disappeared. " said medical student Ruth Mitchell from the Medical Association for the Prevention of War (MAPW).

Mohamed el Baradei, chief of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) has recently remarked that the threat of nuclear war is greater than ever before.

"The health effects of a nuclear strike are so devastating that the only way to treat this threat is through prevention, by calling for nuclear abolition," said Mitchell.

The World Health Organisation has called nuclear weapons the single most dangerous threat to world health.

"With the Federal Government's enthusiasm to strike a uranium deal with China, there is a very real possibility that Australia is becoming a significant contributor to this threat," commented Friends of the Earth campaigner Joel Catchlove.

"China continues to flout its obligations under the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty and the IAEA itself has acknowledged that its safeguards are "fairly limited". In such a situation it is impossible to guarantee that South Australian uranium from the Roxby Downs or Beverley mines will not end up in Chinese nuclear warheads," he said.

"We call upon the Federal Government to strengthen the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty, to work towards ensuring that the devastation seen at Hiroshima & Nagasaki never happens again," added Mitchell.

Photographic opportunities:

Doctors, medical practitioners and other community members will be creating a giant target in Rundle Mall from 12.00 noon, Sunday 6 August 2006.

 

For comment, contact:

Ruth Mitchell (MAPW) 0404 622 172

Dan Henderson (MAPW) 0404 554 040

Joel Catchlove (Friends of the Earth) 0403 886 951