U.N. Non-Governmental Organizations Call for Abolition By 2000

The U.S. administration is vigorously patting itself on the back for its Non-Proliferation Treaty victory. But, NPT notwithstanding, in a one month period last summer the United States added three nuclear weapons submarines to what is already, by far, the world's largest nuclear submarine fleet. The 25-year failure of the nuclear powers to comply with the NPT requirements for swift and complete disarmament precipitated a fierce debate within the UN and provided further incentive for the call to ban the bomb altogether.
During April, 1995, representatives from more than 1,000 United Nations non-governmental organizations (NGOs), representing more than 14 million people worldwide, held a conference to discuss the NPT hearings which were simultaneously being conducted by the U.N.
Representatives from Hiroshima and Nagasaki, in opening the proceedings, spoke movingly of the inherent illegality and inhumanity of nuclear weapons. The walls of the conference rooms were hung with a selection of photographs of the Japanese bombings that the Smithsonian Institution had refused to display at its exhibition in Washington, D.C.
Most of those attending the conference, held at the U.N. Church Center, were also taking part in the official NPT hearings across the street at the U.N.
In its May-June 1995 issue, the WAR & PEACE DIGEST printed the following cover story:
NPT Convention Asked to Abolish Nuclear Weapons
Kevin Sanders

Representatives from more than 1,000 United Nations non-governmental organizations (NGOs) announced at the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty conference in April that they are calling for immediate negotiations for an international convention to abolish all nuclear weapons, with negotiations to be concluded by the year 2000.
In announcing the move, the NGO Abolition Caucus said, "A world free of nuclear weapons is a shared aspiration of humanity. This goal cannot be achieved in a non-proliferation regime that authorizes the possession of nuclear weapons by a small group of states.... Our objective is the definite and unconditional abolition of nuclear weapons."
The organizations belonging to the caucus represent a constituency of more than 14 million people worldwide. The presence of these organizations at the NPT conference proved a significant voice on behalf of those yearning for a nuclear-free world.
The caucus' call was the first formal proposal at the UN to go beyond the traditional call for "disarmament" and specify that all nuclear weapons should be "abolished."
The proposals of the NGO Nuclear Abolition Caucus include the following measures:
1. The phased elimination of all nuclear weapons;
2. An unconditional pledge not to use or threaten to use nuclear weapons;
3. A truly comprehensive test ban with zero threshold;
4. Cease to produce new nuclear weapons and dismantle existing stockpiles;
5. Prohibit nuclear weapons research, including laboratory testing;
6. Create additional nuclear weapon-free zones;
7. Prohibitmilitary andcommercial production and reprocessing of all weapons-usable nuclear materials;
8. Establish an international agency to support the development of sustainable and environmentally safe energy sources;
9. Create mechanisms to ensure the participation of citizens and Egos in planning and monitoring abolition of nuclear weapons;
10. Recognize and declare the illegality of threat or use of nuclear weapons publicly and before the World Court.
  • Abolition 2000 Statement
  • Minutes of 2/96 Meeting in Philadelphia
  • Actions/Projects
  • Resources
  • Organizing Letter - Breaking the Nuclear Chain
  • Questionnaire
  • Addresses of Attendees
  • CTB Clearinghouse - Bell Toll Project