5 May, 2012
"It's time for governments to stop making excuses and start nuclear disarmament negotiations," Jana Jedlicková, PNND Central European Coordinator, told States Parties to the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty last Wednesday 2 May.
"Parliaments and parliamentarians have taken action to support the United Nations Secretary-General's Five Point Plan for nuclear disarmament, and the agreements made by NPT Parties in 2010, including that All States need to make special efforts to establish the necessary framework to achieve and maintain a world without nuclear weapons. It's time for governments to act," she said.
Ms Jedlicková was presenting to the 2012 Conference of States Parties to the NPT (NPT Prep Com) on behalf of parliamentarians and non-governmental organisations that are working with parliamentarians to advance nuclear abolition.
Ms Jedlicková, who is from the Czech Republic, noted that governments, parliamentarians and civil society must work together to ensure success. "I come from Prague, and I was there when president Obama introduced his vision of a world without nuclear weapons. This vision needs our help to become reality."
Ms Jedlicková also submitted to the NPT conference a Joint Parliamentary Statement for a Middle East Zone Free from Nuclear Weapons and all other Weapons of Mass Destruction, which has been endorsed by over 270 parliamentarians from 42 countries including many from the Middle East.
The statement supports a forthcoming inter-governmental conference on establishment of such a zone, and calls on all governments from the region (and other key governments) to participate in good faith in the conference, and in the on-going process to establish the zone. "This diplomatic approach to resolving tensions in the region is much preferable to the threat or use of force which could have unforeseeable consequences. Such a diplomatic approach is the only sustainable way to prevent proliferation," said Ms Jedlicková.
PNND Global Coordinator Alyn Ware, who spoke to the NPT Conference on behalf of a group of experts from New Agenda Coalition countries (Brazil, Egypt, Ireland, Mexico, New Zealand, South Africa and Sweden), noted that "Civil society will be instrumental in building political momentum and helping to overcome hurdles in achieving a zone. The consensus Inter-Parliamentary Union resolution in 2009 and the Parliamentary Statement supporting such a zone which is being presented today, demonstrate the capacity of parliamentarians from countries in the Middle East to reach across the political barriers to find agreement."
Mr Ware also noted that "governments must elevate the priority they give to nuclear disarmament" and cited the call by the Summit of Latin American countries (CELAC) in December last year for an international conference at the highest level in order to "identify ways and methods to eliminate nuclear weapons as soon as possible" with a view to establishing a framework to "prohibit the development, production, acquisition, testing, stockpiling, transfer, use or threat of use, and also stipulate their destruction."
For more information see:
· The role of parliamentarians to advance nuclear non-proliferation and disarmament, Presentation to the NPT Prep Com, delivered by Jana Jedlicková
· New Agenda Coalition NGOs, Presentation to the NPT Prep Com, delivered by Alyn Ware
· Parliamentary call to action on the Middle East
·Joint Parliamentary Statement for a Middle East Zone Free from Nuclear Weapons and all other Weapons of Mass Destruction; also available in Arabic, Czech, Farsi, French, German, Greek, Hebrew, Japanese, Spanish, and Turkish.
· Iran, Israel, nukes and parliamentarians: diplomacy or war?