Faith groups’ dismay at UK Government boycott of UN disarmament meeting
14 May 2016
On Friday of this week the UN Open-ended Working Group completed
its second session on working out how to bring in new treaties that
could lead to multi-lateral disarmament.
This intergovernmental meeting was endorsed by the UN General
Assembly and is supported by 138 of nations and is being boycotted
by the UK Government.
In 1968 a deal was struck and the five countries including the UK
who already possessed the bomb promised to work towards complete
disarmament and in return the other states promised not to develop
their own nuclear weapons. 48 years later the UK is planning to buy
a new generation of nuclear armed submarines and our commitment to
disarmament appears hollow.
Revd Steve Wild, President of the Conference, commented: "It is
now time to take disarmament seriously. Agreement on a
verifiable and effective treaty leading to the elimination of
nuclear weapons would demonstrate our faith in co-operation over
threat, hope over fear, life over death. As people of faith
we believe that threat of use of weapons of mass destruction is
inherently wrong regardless of who holds them. The continued
use of this threat by the UK is unnecessary and
Dr Jill Barber, Vice President of the Methodist Church,
commetned: "It is shameful that our government has voted against
the process that is currently taking place within the United
Nations. Although we have a UK Disarmament Ambassador based
in Geneva, the UK chose not to be present in vital discussions
taking place in that same city. The credibility of the UK's
commitment to multilateral disarmament is being seriously dented.
Our government cannot hold back progress on the introduction
of a nuclear ban treaty."
You can read more about this on the JPIT blog by clicking here.