ON CANADIAN NUCLEAR POLICY
CANADIAN NUCLEAR POLICY
June 15, 1998
The time has come for Canada to formulate a coherent policy on the subject of nuclear weapons and to vote at the United Nations, in the company of the majority of the world's nations, for comprehensive negotiations to eliminate nuclear weapons.
- The Honourable Lloyd Axworthy,
Minister of Foreign Affairs
- The House of Commons
Standing Committee on Foreign Affairs
- Canadian NGOs, Local Governments, and Individuals
- Canadian and International Media
India's five nuclear explosions, and Pakistan's six explosions, have shown that the status quo, in which the five permanent members of the U.N. Security Council keep their nuclear weapons indefinitely while all others are prohibited from acquiring them, is unsustainable.
Canada must no longer be a nuclear fence-sitter: on the one hand ardently supporting the Non-Proliferation Treaty and international law, while on the other hand supporting, and hiding behind, the nuclear arsenals of the United States and NATO. The actions of India and Pakistan have demonstrated the futility of this approach.
It is appropriate to condemn the governments of India and Pakistan for their recent nuclear tests. But such gestures are not enough.
Canada's proper response to the actions of India and Pakistan -- and perhaps the only means by which we can reverse the escalation of the nuclear arms race in the Indian sub-continent -- would be to join the growing global movement pressing all Nuclear Weapon States for an unequivocal commitment to commence negotiations leading to the elimination of nuclear weapons.
We especially urge the Canadian government to join the "New Agenda Coalition" of middle power states working for the elimination of nuclear weapons that was announced by Ireland on 9 June 1998.
Shortly before the recent round of nuclear weapons tests, an Angus Reid poll showed that 92 percent of Canadians want Canada to play a leading role in the global effort to abolish nuclear weapons.
The overwhelming majority of Canadians believe that the complete elimination of nuclear weapons is the only way to prevent the spread and ultimately the use of these weapons. Canada must commit itself unequivocally to this goal.[signed by member groups of the CNANW]
The Canadian Network to Abolish Nuclear Weapons (CNANW) is a loose alliance of autonomous groups whose goal is the following:
WHO OR WHAT IS CNANW?''to call on the Government of Canada to work with other nations to initiate immediately and conclude by the year 2000 a convention which will set out a binding timetable for the abolition of all nuclear weapons in the world.''
Below is a list of the current members of CNANW as well as a growing list of those local governments and groups which endorse the goal of CNANW.
CNANW has the following educational materials available:
These materials may be obtained by contacting the CNANW.
- a letter sent On Feb. 18, 1998 by the leaders of 19 Christian churches to Prime Minister Chrétien calling for the abolition of nuclear weapons;
(The names of the signatories are set out below)
- a Statement by 61 international Generals and Admirals calling for a fixed timetable for the abolition of nuclear weapons;
- a Statement by 107 International Civilian Leaders calling for the abolition of nuclear weapons;
- the results of an Angus Reid public opinion poll indicating that 92 percent of the 1500 Canadians polled support Canada taking a lead in negotiating an agreement to abolish nuclear weapons;
- information on the accidental use of nuclear weapons;
- information on the effects of nuclear weapons;
- information on threats of nuclear weapons use.
Any group, local government, or individual wishing to support join or CNANW may do so by completing the Statement of Support set out below and return it to the address indicated.
STATEMENT OF SUPPORT
FOR THE ABOLITION
OF NUCLEAR WEAPONS
I / We ______________________________________
(name of individual or organization)believe that the use and the threat to use nuclear weapons are abhorrent and morally wrong.
I / We call on the Government of Canada to work with other nations to initiate immediately and conclude by the year 2000 a convention which will set out a binding timetable for the abolition of all nuclear weapons in the world.
Name of Individual or Contact Person:
Name of Organization (if any): _____
Town or City:
Postal Code: _____
Please return this form to
Canadian Network to Abolish Nuclear Weapons,
145 Spruce Street, Suite 208,
Ottawa, Ontario, K1R 6P1.
Or you can e-mail your response.
LIST OF CANADIAN GROUPS
associated with the
- Les Artistes Pour la Paix
- Canadian Coalition for Nuclear Responsibility
Regroupement pour la surveillance du nucléaire
- Canadian Peace Alliance
l'Alliance Canadienne Pour la Paix
- Canadian Pugwash Committee
- Centre de ressources sur la non-violence
- End the Arms Race
- Lawyers for Social Reponsibility
- PeaceFund Canada
- Physicians for Global Survival (PGS)
(formerly Physicians for the Prevention of Nuclear War)
- Project Ploughshares
- Science for Peace
- Veterans Against Nuclear Arms
- Voice of Women for Peace
- World Federalists of Canada
- Halifax Regional Municipal Council (Nova Scotia)
- Village of Lakefield (Ontario)
- Lunenberg County
- City of Peterborough (Ontario)
- County of Peterborough, (Ontario)
- City of Saskatoon (Saskatchewan)
- Canadian Friends Service Committee
- Canadian Public Health Association
- Division of Church in Society,
(Alberta and Northwest conference)
- United Church of Canada
- Canadian Federation of University Women
- Group of 78
- Older Women's Network, Toronto
- Ontario Coalition of Senior Citizens Organizations
- People's Voice Press Club (Calgary)
- Project Peacemeakers (Winnipeg)
- Project Ploughshares Calgary
- Results/Resultats Canada,
- United Nations Association in Canada
(Greater Ottawa/Carleton Branch)
- Veterans Aagainst Nuclear Arms (Toronto)
- Veterans Aagainst Nuclear Arms (Winnipeg)
- WUSC (World University Service in Canada)
THE FOLLOWING CHURCHES SIGNED THE LETTER TO CHRÉTIEN
which stated (in part):''In support of this goal, Canada should immediately take the following actions: Urge all states to negotiate by the year 2000 an agreement for the elimination of nuclear weapons within a time-bound framework....''
- Anglican Church in Canada
- Armenian Orthodox Church (Canadian diocese)
- Baptist Convention of Ontario and Quebec
- British Methodist Episcopal Church
- Christian Church (Disciples of Christ)
- Evangelical Lutheran Church
- Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops
(12 million Canadians affiliated)
- Coptic Orthodox Church in Canada
- Council of Christian Reformed Churches
- Ethiopian Orthodox Church of Canada
- Evangelical Lutheran Church in Canada
- Greek Orthodox Metropolis of Canada
- Mennonite Central Committee (Canada)
- Orthodox Church in America
- The Presbyterian Church
- The Polish National Catholic Church
- The Religious Society of Friends (Quakers) in Canada
- The Salvation Army
- The United Church of Canada
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