Finally the day has come, after more than a year of preparations. Our conference “Nuclear Weapons - Abolition Now!” is officially about to open.
This will be the 20th European Student Conference of the International Physicians for the Prevention of Nuclear War hosted by the Norwegian Student Affiliate of the IPPNW. We are proud to present an exciting program with outstanding guest speakers. The program includes lectures, workshops and panel discussions all focusing on nuclear weapons - in a broad perspective and from different points of view.
This is a conference for everyone interested in issues concerning nuclear weapons. These weapons still pose one of the greatest threats to humanity. Although the total nuclear stockpile in the world has been reduced over the last 20 years, some 23 000 nuclear warheads still remain. Even a limited regional nuclear war with detonation of some hundred warheads will have disastrous consequences. Nuclear weapons are clearly non-discriminatory. The catastrophic consequences of nuclear war are at the extreme end of a continuum of armed violence that undermines health, environment, and security. Abolition is the only way to ensure that they will not be used again.
The Doomsday Clock of the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists is a symbolic clock face, maintained since 1947. Since 2010, the clock reads seven to midnight and indicates that the threat of nuclear weapons is greater today than during larger periods of the Cold War. However, several positive initiatives have evolved over the last two years and with Barack Obama winning the Nobel Peace Prize, the issue is back on the political agenda.
These are exciting times. With the Review Conference of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty in New York this May we are hopefully entering a new era. Strengthening the NPT Treaty and implementing a Nuclear Weapons Convention endorsed by all nations of the world are imperatives for a strong, enforced abolition regime.
“So today, I state clearly and with conviction America’s commitment to seek the peace and security of a world without nuclear weapons” (Barack Obama, Prague 2009)
With Obama’s words lingering in our ears we agree that this is the time to take action. And the time for abolition is now.
Associated organizations are The Norwegian Affiliate of the IPPNW (Norske leger mot atomvåpen), The Norwegian Peace Council (Norges Fredsråd), No to Nuclear Weapons (Nei til atomvåpen) and The Norwegian Civil Service Union (Norsk Tjenestemannslag).