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From nuclear weapons-free NZ to a nuclear weapons-free world

From nuclear weapons-free NZ to a nuclear weapons-free world

iCAN Aotearoa New Zealand

16 August 2011

Join the call for action to abolish nuclear weapons! The International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons Aotearoa New Zealand (iCAN-ANZ) invites you to add your voice to the call for a nuclear weapons-free world by signing the new petition to parliament. The text of the petition is included below and the petition form is available at http://www.icanw.org.nz

iCAN-ANZ is currently fundraising to publish a copy of the petition in national newspapers to publicise the campaign and its objective - a nuclear weapons-free world, and for the NZ government to take action to achieve this - information about this proposal is also included below.

Petition: Call for action to abolish nuclear weapons

"To the House of Representatives:

Since the detonation of the first atomic bomb in July 1945, the threat of use of nuclear weapons has cast a shadow over the future of the earth. Since then, each stage of the production of nuclear weapons has caused immeasurable harm to human health and wellbeing, and extensive contamination of the environment - from uranium mining, processing of radioactive materials, manufacturing of nuclear warheads, through to nuclear bomb testing.

Despite ongoing widespread public opposition to nuclear weapons, and the overwhelming majority of governments around the world now supporting the abolition of these weapons of mass destruction, little progress has been made - 20,530 nuclear warheads remain in the arsenals of eight nuclear weapons states.

Yet other weapons of mass destruction - chemical and biological weapons - have been banned by international law, as have some 'indiscriminate weapons' such as anti-personnel landmines and cluster munitions.

In 1987, the New Zealand government took a leading nuclear disarmament role by passing the New Zealand Nuclear Free Zone, Disarmament and Arms Control Act to ban biological and nuclear weapons here. New Zealand was one of six governments that led the Oslo Process to ban cluster bombs which resulted in the 2008 Convention on Cluster Munitions, hosting a key meeting in Wellington as part of the process. It is time for the government to now take a leading role in achieving a Nuclear Weapons Convention.

We therefore respectfully call on the House of Representatives to urge the government to actively engage with 'like-minded' governments committed to abolishing nuclear weapons to launch, without delay, an initiative to start the process of negotiating a Nuclear Weapons Convention - a treaty to prohibit the development, production, testing, deployment, stockpiling, transfer, threat of use, and use of nuclear weapons."

You can print of a copy of the petition to sign, and to collect more signatures, at http://www.icanw.org.nz

Proposal to publish the call for action to abolish nuclear weapons in national newspapers

iCAN-ANZ is currently fundraising to publish a copy of the petition in one or more national newspapers to publicise the campaign and its objective - a nuclear weapons-free world, and for the NZ government to take action to achieve this. The cost of publishing the petition is around $2,000 and we are seeking contributions from organisations and individuals who would like to contribute towards the cost - a list of donor organisations and individuals (unless you would prefer to remain anonymous) will be published on the iCAN-ANZ website. If you would like more information about assisting with the costs of publishing the petition, please contact iCAN-ANZ email icanz@xtra.co.nz - thank you.

ENDS

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