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Disarmament Diplomacy

Issue No. 52, November 2000

India National Convention for Nuclear Disarmament and Peace

National Convention for Nuclear Disarmament and Peace, New Delhi, November 11-13, 2000.

Note: over 600 delegates attended the Convention, more than 500 from across India. In addition, 50 ' delegates' were present from Pakistan, 15 from Bangladesh and Sri Lanka, and around 20 from other countries including Australia, Canada, France, Japan, New Zealand, South Africa, UK and US.

Interim Charter for Nuclear Disarmament and Peace

"This National Convention for Nuclear Disarmament and Peace resolutely opposes nuclear weapons in India, South Asia and globally. Nuclear weapons are evil and immoral. They divert resources from real needs, promote insecurity, are genocidal, undermine democracy, endanger the environment and future generations. This Convention unequivocally condemns India' entry into the Nuclear Weapons Club in 1998 which represents a betrayal of its own past positions. This Convention resolves to bring together largest members of groups, organizations and individuals on a common platform with the following Agenda. To carry forward this Agenda we constitute ourselves into a National Coalition for Nuclear Disarmament and Peace [CNDP].

India:

To halt and roll back India' nuclear weapons-related preparations and activity we demand the following measures to be implemented immediately:

(i) No assembly of nuclear weapons, no induction and deployment of nuclear weapons. No acquisition and development of nuclear weapon-specific delivery systems.

(ii) Advanced research into nuclear weapons to be halted. No to explosive testing, sub-critical tests, or production or acquisition of weapons-usable fissile material tritium.

(iii) Complete transparency and independent monitoring of governmental activity in this regard and full public accountability on nuclear development and energy matters.

(iv) Proper compensation and reparation to all victims and their families for damages to health and local environment by activities related to all aspects (from uranium mining to reactor operation to waste disposal) of the nuclear fuel cycle. Priority must be given to remedial measures for all environmental damage.

Other Nuclear-Capable and Nuclear-Weapons States:

We demand similar immediate measures of nuclear restraint and roll back from Pakistan. Given the tensions and potential for war in West Asia, we demand complete dismantling of Israel' nuclear weapons regime.

All the N-5 or nuclear-weapons states (USA, Russia, Britain, France and China,) must immediately de-alert their nuclear weapons systems, make a pledge of No-First Use and stop all research into advanced nuclear weapons. No to all efforts to construct an anti-ballistic missile system or missile shield.

We demand the rapid, systematic and continuous reduction by the N-5 of their nuclear weapons down to zero level through unilateral, bilateral and multilateral commitments and pacts.

We demand that the Indian Government go back to being among the pacesetters in matters of global nuclear disarmament.

We want a nuclear weapons free world and we support all genuine efforts in pursuit of this goal. In this effort we commit ourselves to the global nuclear disarmament movement and will strive to strengthen international solidarity in this endeavour."

Resolution on Missile Defence

"This National Convention for Nuclear Disarmament and Peace condemns unequivocally the proposal of the US Government to deploy so-called National Missile Defence and Theatre Missile Defence systems. While this programme may be currently on hold under the Clinton administration, it is more than likely that the next administration under the pressure of defence contractors will actually deploy National Missile Defence and Theatre Missile Defence systems.

The promotion of the National Missile Defence and the Theatre Missile Defence in the US political arena has all the hallmarks of the manner in which the US nuclear programme has been expanded, refined and sharpened. Fraudulent tests (or improperly designed ones) are used to argue that the technology for this exists and can be developed and deployed. International treaties like the Anti Ballistic Missile Treaty are sought to be circumvented or undermined or rejected. New bogus threats, like the danger of nuclear weapons in the hands of so-called ' states', are created to justify the programmes. Objective opinion concurs that even against '' terrorist threats, NMD and TMD make little sense.

The very discussion of the proposals for the NMD and the TMD in the US have evoked strong reactions from other nuclear-weapon states and any pursuit of these programmes will only harden the nuclear doctrine, strategies and postures of the other NWS. The pursuit of the NMD and the TMD will be a serious blow to the cause of global nuclear disarmament. This conference considers it a crucial task of the global anti-nuclear weapons movement to mobilize vigorously against these programmes. This conference calls on the Government of India to resolutely and forcefully record the opposition of the Indian people to the NMD and the TMD in all international fora."

Source: documentation kindly provided by Praful Bidwai, Achin Vanaik, Harsh Kapoor and others.

© 2000 The Acronym Institute.