On 7 July 2017, at the initiative of the United Nations, 122 countries concluded negotiations and elaboration of a Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons. Subsequently, on 20 September 2017, the process of signing the treaty was opened, with the well-founded expectation that more than 50 countries would ratify it as a condition for the treaty to enter into force.
On 15 November, in the Spanish Congress of Deputies, an event will be held to address the global context of the deterioration of global security and the increasing risk of the use of nuclear weapons and to review the main international initiatives that are under way to prevent it.
In a global context in which, once again, the danger of nuclear war is growing following successive nuclear tests by North Korea and the threat by President Trump to unleash “fire, fury and frankly power, the likes of which this world has never seen before,” it seems necessary for the Spanish Parliament to debate this issue and adhere to the international treaties and actions under way.
Several social organisations such as World without Wars and Violence, the Spanish Peace Research Association, the Peace Culture Foundation and the Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom – Spain, among others, have taken the initiative to take this debate to the Spanish Parliament, calling on parliamentary groups to take a stand on this matter and to ask the government why Spain is not among those 122 countries that have been working on the elaboration of this Treaty, and calling on all deputies and senators in Spain to attend the event that will take place on Wednesday, the 15th of November, at 4pm in the Clara Campoamor Hall in the Spanish Congress.
In the event the global context with respect to nuclear weapons and the NPT will be discussed, as well as other nuclear disarmament initiatives. In addition, the Network of Parliamentarians for Nuclear Non-Proliferation and Disarmament (PNND), an international inter-parliamentary forum with the participation of more than 700 parliamentarians from 75 countries working on nuclear disarmament, will also be presented.
To this end, Alyn Ware, the international coordinator of PNND, has been invited to participate. In 2009 he was awarded the Right Livelihood Award, popularly known as the Alternative Nobel Peace Prize, for his “effective and creative work over two decades to promote peace education and rid the world of nuclear weapons”. These awards have been presented annually since the Swede, Jakob von Uexkull, established them in 1980 to “honour and support those who propose concrete and exemplary solutions to the challenges of today’s world”. In 2009, Ware was reported by the press as “a tireless defender of peace and nonviolence”.
Furthermore, the Conference on Nonviolence in preparation for the 2nd World March for Peace and Nonviolence which will take place at Cybele Palace, headquarters of the Madrid City Council, on Friday 17, will review the initiatives for nuclear disarmament and will explicitly support Spain’s accession to the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons.