By J Nastranis
NEW YORK (IDN) – "At a time when the international community is seeing a renewal of big-power rivalry and debating the pros and cons of nuclear technology, the initiative of Kazakhstan President Nursultan Nazarbayev in establishing the Nazarbayev Prize for a Nuclear-Weapons-Free World and Global Security is both prescient and timely," says Ong Keng Yong, Ambassador-at-Large at the Singapore Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
By John Lee
SEOUL (IDM-INPS | NK News) - Since North Korea showed the rest of the world that it has made significant progress in developing its submarine-launched ballistic missile (SLBM) technology earlier in August, and combined with its quickly-growing ability to miniaturize nuclear weapons, there have been increased calls among South Korean lawmakers, think tanks, military experts, and pundits for South Korea to acquire its own nuclear submarines to counter the North Korean threat.
By J Nastranis
NEW YORK (IDN) – Nuclear disarmament campaigners have hailed the landmark resolution adopted by the United Nations on October 27 for launching negotiations in 2017 on a legally binding treaty outlawing nuclear weapons. The resolution heralds an end to two decades of paralysis in multilateral nuclear disarmament efforts.
In a historic move, at a meeting of the First Committee of the UN General Assembly, which deals with disarmament and international security, 123 member states of the UN voted in favour of the resolution, 38 voted against and 16 abstained.
Analysis by T.K. Fernandes
NEW YORK (IDN) - Since the deadly use of atomic bombs in Hiroshima and Nagasaki in 1945, the international community has been calling for the elimination of nuclear weapons. Despite slow progress, civil society has continued to tirelessly advocate for a nuclear-free world and is in fact one step closer to its realization in principle.
While speaking to IDN, Director of Peace and Human Rights at Soka Gakkai International (SGI) Kimiaki Kawai noted the importance of nuclear disarmament, stating: “We share common global challenges like climate change, poverty, hunger and disasters – so why don’t we utilize our rich resources for more meaningful purposes?” [P27] ARABIC | GERMAN | ITALIAN | JAPANESE TEXT VERSON PDF | KOREAN TEXT VERSION PDF | NORWEGIAN | PORTUGUESE | SPANISH | SWEDISH | TURKISH
By Lowana Veal
REYKJAVIK (IDN) - At a time when there is a sharp deterioration in relations between the United States and Russia, triggered by disputes over Ukraine, the Crimea and Syria, the capital of Iceland hosted experts, diplomats and researchers on October 10-11 to commemorate the 30th anniversary of the historic Reykjavik Summit between Ronald Reagan and Mikhail Gorbachev.
IDN, a flagship agency of the International Press Syndicate group, spoke to some of the participants of the commemorative event, the initiative for which came from the International Peace Institute (IPI) in New York. What prompted them to organize the event? [P26] CHINESE TEXT VERSION PDF | JAPANESE TEXT VERSION PDF | KOREAN TEXT VERSION PDF
By J Nastranis
NEW YORK (IDN) – Faith groups have called on the United Nations General Assembly to heed the voices of the survivors of atomic bombings 71 years ago (hibakusha) urging the abolition of nuclear weapons, and vote in favour of the resolution submitted by Austria, Brazil, Ireland, Mexico, Nigeria and South Africa.
Dr. Emily Welty, Vice Moderator of the World Council of Churches Commission on International Affairs, introduced the joint statement during the civil society presentations at the UN General Assembly First Committee on Disarmament and International Security on October 12.
Viewpoint by Jayantha Dhanapala*
This is an expanded version of thoughts expressed by the author at a conference organized by the International Peace Institute (IPI) with the Foreign Ministry of Iceland on October 10-11 to commemorate the 30th anniversary of the Summit meeting between U.S. President Ronald Reagan and his Soviet counterpart Mikhail Gorbachev.
REYKJAVIK (IDN) - Richard Rhodes, the famous author of several books on nuclear weapons, including the Pulitzer Prize-winning “The Making of the Atomic Bomb” (1986), has written a play entitled “Reykjavik” dramatizing the famous Summit. At the conclusion he has Gorbachev say, “Reykjavik is not a failure – it’s a breakthrough”.
REYKJAVIK - At an IPI seminar in Reykjavik, Iceland on October 11, former Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev said via video, “I would like to emphasize something, with all the emotions I have in my soul: the worst thing that has happened over the past few years is the collapse of trust in relations between the major powers, which, according to the UN Charter, bear primary responsibility for maintaining international peace and security, and which still have enormous stockpiles of nuclear weapons and must reduce them, up to and including their elimination.”
By J Nastranis
NEW YORK (IDN) - The 'International Hibakusha Appeal Signature Campaign', launched early 2016, aims to collect hundreds of millions of signatures by 2020 in the hope that a treaty to prohibit and eliminate nuclear weapons will be achieved in their lifetime.
As of October 1, 2016, the Campaign had gathered 564,260 signatures in Japan and in several other countries around the world.
Analysis by Lowana Veal
REYKJAVIK (IDN) - Recently released declassified documents by Washington have unleashed a debate whether the U.S. ever deployed nuclear weapons in Iceland, a member of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) since its foundation in 1949.
Experts are of the view that though the U.S. claims to have never deployed nuclear weapons in a country at a strategic juncture of the North Atlantic and Arctic oceans, it does not mean that it had no nuclear plans for Iceland. Previous research by Valur Ingimundarson and William Arkin demonstrates that during the Cold War Iceland was considered a potential storage site. [P25] JAPANESE TEXT VERSION PDF