On Tuesday, June 10th, Peace Boat US attended the event, “We Can Abolish Nuclear Weapons,” hosted by the NGO Committee for Disarmament, Peace and Security held in the United Nations Plaza building. Current topics pertinent to nuclear disarmament were discussed, including UN-Fold Zero, the International Day for the Total Elimination of Nuclear Weapons, and the Marshall Islands “nuclear zero” case.

Alyn Ware, Founder and International Coordinator of Parliamentarians for Nuclear Non-proliferation and Disarmament (PNND) began by updating the committee on UN-fold Zero initiatives. The UN-fold Zero is a platform working for a nuclear free world. In support of a nuclear free world, an International Day for the Total Elimination of Nuclear Weapons is planned for September 26th. There are already 164 parliaments committed to observing this day.

The meeting continued with a presentation on the Marshall Islands suit against the nine nuclear-armed nations, which was recently submitted to the United Nations International Court of Justice and the US Federal Court on April 24th 2014. The claim states that these nations have failed to participate in negotiations for a nuclear free world, therefore, compromising their compliance with the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) and customary International Law. International Campaign Director for the 2020 Vision Campaign of Mayors for Peace and Executive Adviser to the President of the Hiroshima Peace Culture Foundation, Aaron Tovish explained that in the 1940s and 50s, the Marshall Islands suffered 67 nuclear tests conducted by the United States, including the largest bomb ever tested by the U.S., Castle Bravo.  He stated that there is international support for the Marshall Islands case and that it is an opportunity for other nations who have suffered nuclear testing to come forward. To learn more about the Marshall Islands case, please visit: Nuclear Zero Lawsuits.

The meeting closed with the simple goal, BAN THE BOMBS!

By Stephanie Smith