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 TUES 30 OCT 2018



A resolution passed last night by Sydney City Council urging the Government to support the Treaty for the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons (TPNW), commonly known as the 'Ban' Treaty has been welcomed by People for Nuclear Disarmament's UN nuclear disarmament campaigner John Hallam.

Mr Hallam noted that:
“The situation with respect to the risk of nuclear war has rarely looked this bad. In the last few days, we have had Senator Sam Nunn, one of the founders of the Nuclear Threat Initiative remark that:
“I actually think the chance of a terrible miscalculation involving nuclear weapons is greater today than 10 or 20 years ago, and possibly even worse than during the height of the Cold War,”

While according to Paul Dibb, now Professor at ANU and former head of Australian security, he had been told in Moscow at a meeting of security experts:
“...we had a retired colonel-general, which is one rank than a three-star or lieutenant-general, say in a plenary session, “Paul, you know, the situation now in terms of our relations at the strategic nuclear level with America are at least as bad as the Cold War.. We're not talking to each other at all; we're not agreeing on intrusive verifications and counting rules of how many ballistic missiles with how many warheads.”

And then he looked at me and he said, "And don't think you Australians will be free of this. With regard to Pine Gap, you would find that in the event of Russian nuclear war with America, nuclear missiles will fly in all directions."

What is abundantly clear, and has been clear for a number of years, is that the danger of nuclear war, a danger that had been thought to be long forgotten and forgettable, is back and is as ugly and terrifying as ever. Nuclear weapons are, maybe even more so than during the Cold War, a clear and present and immediate danger to civilization and to humans as a species – and specifically to Australian cities Like Sydney, and like Melbourne, who I understand have also passed a resolution similar to that of Sydney.

As a matter of 'existential importance – a matter of life or death in other words – Governments worldwide must:
--Press for immediate, short to immediate term risk reduction measures to avoid an accidental apocalypse that could end civilization and place question marks over human survival
--Press the nuclear weapon states in particular to sign the Ban Treaty.(TPNW).

ICAN are absolutely to be congratulated for the immense pressure they have bought to bear on parliamentarians, and others, to motivate them to take action on the Ban Treaty.

In the meantime, action to reduce the risk of an accidental apocalypse is imperative.

Sydney and Melbourne City councils, as members of Mayors for Peace, are to be congratulated for taking action on this issue and raising its public profile.

The current government and any future Australian Government, must take urgent action both to sign and ratify the TPNW (and aggressively urge others to do likewise), and in the immediate term to act to reduce nuclear risks.

John Hallam
People for Nuclear Disarmament
Human Survival Project
Nuclear Weapons Campaigner
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Item 13.3
Notices of Motion
International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons (ICAN)
Cities Appeal

By Councillor Scott

It is resolved that Council:
(A) note:
the City of Sydney is a member of Mayors for Peace, an organization of which the mission is to raise international public awareness regarding the need to abolish nuclear weapons and contribute to genuine and lasting world peace; and
(ii) our support for the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons (ICAN), and our commitment to contributing to a safer and more peaceful world;
(B) endorse the ICAN Cities Appeal, that is, that the City of Sydney “is deeply concerned about the grave threat that nuclear weapons pose to communities throughout the world. We firmly believe that our residents have the right to live in a world free from this threat. Any use of nuclear weapons, whether deliberate or accidental, would have catastrophic, far-reaching and long-lasting consequences for people and the environment. Therefore, we warmly welcome the adoption of the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons by the United Nations in 2017, and we call on our national government to sign and ratify it without delay.”; and
(C) request that the Lord Mayor write to the Prime Minister, the Hon. Scott Morrison MP, the Minister for Foreign Affairs, Senator the Hon. Marise Payne, the Federal Leader of the Opposition, the Hon. Bill Shorten MP, and the Shadow Minister for Foreign Affairs, Senator the Hon. Penny Wong, expressing this view.