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DOOMSDAY CLOCK AT 2 AND A HALF MINS TO 'MIDNIGHT' PUTS APOCALYPSE FIRMLY ON GLOBAL AGENDA

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 IMMEDIATE USE FRI 27 JANUARY

PEOPLE FOR NUCLEAR DISARMAMENT
HUMAN SURVIVAL PROJECT

DOOMSDAY CLOCK AT 2 AND A HALF MINS TO 'MIDNIGHT' PUTS APOCALYPSE FIRMLY ON GLOBAL AGENDA

RIDDING WORLD OF NUKE WEAPONS, RISK REDUCTION MEASURES, NEEDED TO TAKE APOCALYPSE OFF THE AGENDA.

People for Nuclear Disarmament and the Human Survival Project have reacted to the announcement this morning by the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists that the hands of the symbolic 'Doomsday Clock' have been moved by the Bulletin's nobel-heavy Board of Sponsors from three minutes to 'midnight' to two and a half minutes to 'midnight', by stressing the necessity for measures to reduce risks of nuclear war, and to eliminate nuclear weapons. 'Midnight' on the Doomsday Clock represents nuclear (or climatic or other) catastrophe of a magnitude sufficient to end civilization and potentially humans as a species.

According to PND and the Human Survival Projects UN nuclear disarmament campaigner John Hallam:
“The move from three minutes to 'midnight' to two and a half minutes is an indication of just how dire the risk of nuclear war has become in the last two years. The clock hands are in a position they have not been in since 1953, when the US and the Soviet Union began testing monster thermonuclear weapons. The risk is now assessed as greater than it was in 1983, a year in which the world nearly ended twice in a six week period, but during which the clock hands were at 3 minutes to midnight.”

“The change in the position of the clock hands is due in part to the loose rhetoric being employed by both Vladimir Putin and others in Russia, and now by Trump during his candidacy. Prior to Trumps election things were also dire, with US nuclear forces at DEFCON-3, which is about 15 minutes to launch. Now we wonder if the US and Russia could incinerate each other over a tweet, while hoping desperately that Putin and Trump make the improvement in US-Russia relationships each has talked about.”

“While the US and Russia teeter on the brink of the abyss, the rest of the world is being much more sensible: The L41 resolution, adopted in December by the UN General Assembly provides for a negotiating process that will take place in March and in June-July at the UN in New York, which will make nuclear weapons illegal.”

“ It is impossible to have a civilization-ending nuclear war without nuclear weapons. If there are none, then the risk of such an event must be zero.”

“There are also immediate risk reduction measures that can be implemented in virtually days if the political will to do it is there. These include taking ICBM forces off high alert, adopting no first use policies, and measures that establish lines of communication between US and Russian missile forces, making civilization-ending mistakes much much less likely.”

“The current position of the Doomsday Clock-hands is a clear indicator that risk reduction and the elimination of nuclear weapons aren't feel-good measures to be adopted some century, but are immediate, pressing, survival priorities that need to be done yesterday.”

“We call on all governments, especially those like Australia who are involved in the US alliance system, to give their unqualified support to nuclear risk reduction measures, to measures to eliminate nuclear weapons as a matter of the utmost urgency and highest priority, and to the L41 negotiating process.”

John Hallam
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