International Day for the Total Elimination of Nuclear Weapons, 26 September
Spanish Commission for Justice and Peace is concerned about the growing deterioration in international relations and the progressive dismantling of treaties and international mechanisms for the control of nuclear weapons, as well as the announced plans to expand and modernize them by the nuclear powers. Therefore, Spanish Commission for Justice and Peace states that:
1. The use of nuclear weapons has humanitarian devastating consequences which affect the whole planet. Any accidental or intentional nuclear detonation will result in a human and ecological catastrophe of unforeseeable consequences. In the words of Pope Francis, "the world must condemn the use and possession of nuclear weapons", since they are indiscriminate and disproportionate weapons, ethically unjustifiable.
2. Therefore, it is not acceptable to consider nuclear weapons as a necessary evil rather the international community must be convinced that nuclear weapons are a risk for the existence of humanity. They are against human conscience and must be eliminated. Nuclear deterrence does not adequately address the security challenges in a multiply polarized world like the current one, but fundamentally contributes to fear and it fuels future conflicts. Again in the words of Pope Francis, "Weapons of mass destruction, particularly nuclear weapons, create nothing but a false sense of security". Likewise, they generate a culture of “mutual intimidation” that does not contribute to the improvement of international relations and promotes a deeply unequal coercive barrier between countries that possess nuclear weapons and those that do not.
3. All global military spending, in particular that used in nuclear weapons, is absolutely disproportionate and wastes huge existent resources which are urgently needed to address the roots of conflicts, the promotion of peace and integral human development. These are the fundamental vectors to achieve authentic human security throughout the planet. Our rulers must face the strong pressure of the arms industry against the necessary processes of global disarmament and commit themselves to work for peace and authentic security.
4. Nuclear disarmament is a global problem, which therefore requires a global, collective and concerted response, based on mutual trust. Moreover, since the humanitarian and environmental consequences of both the possession and use of nuclear weapons are global in themselves, no one can be excluded from this dialogue. Consequently, in addition to the bilateral and multilateral disarmament talks that must be carried out by countries that possess nuclear weapons, all governments must listen to the millions of people who are asking for the total elimination of nuclear weapons. Civil society expresses today authentically the great changes that this world needs to survive, always based on the universal ethical principle: respect for life. In particular, we request the Government of Spain to sign and subsequently ratify the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons approved in 2017 at the United Nations. Our country did not provide any support at that time to it.
We are fully convinced that the current crisis in international relations does not require new or more weapons, rather the opposite. The common destiny of humanity demands a pragmatic reinforcement of dialogue and the consolidation of mechanisms of trust, cooperation and disarmament at all levels. The Christian communities are called to contribute significantly to this process, because we can and must liberate the world from nuclear weapons and invest in integral human development with the rest of humanity. Let us not forget that peace is always built on the foundations of justice, and that the future of all humanity is at stake.
Spanish Commission for Justice and Peace, 26th September 2019
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