Nations urge next moves toward abolition in conference on humanitarian impact of nuclear weapons in Mexico

by Keiichiro Yamamoto, Staff Writer

Nuevo Vallarta, Mexico – The second conference on the humanitarian impact of nuclear weapons opened in Mexico on February 13. Referring to the prospect of realizing a nuclear weapons convention and eliminating such arms, delegates of participating nations are calling for the next moves to be made.

A delegate from the Egyptian government said, “It is time for us to make a change,” and stressed that, in addition to issuing statements, ongoing action is needed. The delegate added that preparations should be made for a nuclear weapons convention.

The Ambassador of Morocco to the Conference on Disarmament in Geneva also expressed the view that a road map to the elimination of nuclear weapons should be devised. A delegate from the Cuban government responded that an action plan should be developed at the next conference. Discussions on the inhumanity of nuclear weapons are advancing.

Still, there is concern that these discussions on nuclear abolition, which lack the participation of the major nuclear powers, such as the United States, Russia, and China, will not produce feasible plans and will isolate the nuclear weapon states.

On the other hand, some believe that the nuclear weapon states will not be able to ignore this campaign for nuclear abolition if the movement gains momentum. Akira Kawasaki, an executive committee member of Peace Boat, a Tokyo-based NGO, stressed that it is important to develop the argument to the point that advancing toward the elimination of nuclear weapons becomes inevitable.

(Originally published on February 15, 2014)