For immediate release: 17th November 2006
The Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament today called for a full debate on Trident replacement before any decision is made. CND Chair Kate Hudson demanded that all options, including non-replacement, be on the table in the parliamentary debate. According to The Guardian, Tony Blair has told the cabinet that a debate on Trident will begin as early as next week, and that a decision must be taken ‘quickly.’
The Government has refused to publish a Green Paper outlining all the options and will instead, reportedly, publish a White Paper ‘supporting retention of an independent deterrent.’ In response to this partial treatment of the issue, CND has produced an Alternative White Paper making the case for non-replacement.
The Alternative White Paper will be officially launched at a press conference in Room C, 1 Parliament Street on Tuesday 21st November at 11 am. Amongst those launching the Paper will be Jon Trickett MP, Jeremy Corbyn MP and Kate Hudson, Chair of CND.
Key points highlighted in the Alternative White Paper include:
The inability of nuclear weapons to meet today’s major security threat, terrorism
The absence of current nuclear superpower threats
The promotion of nuclear proliferation: ‘The more that those states that already have [nuclear weapons] increase their arsenals, or insist that such weapons are essential to their national security, the more other states feel that they too must have them for their security’ (1)
Britain’s treaty obligation under the NPT to accomplish the total elimination of its nuclear arsenal (2)
The cost of Trident replacement: up to £76 billion would adversely affect public spending on health care and other important issues
Notes to Editor:
1. From the 13 Steps toward Nuclear Disarmament agreed at the NPT Review Conference of 2000
2. For further information and interviews please contact Rick Wayman, CND’s Press & Communications Officer, on 0207 7002350 or 07968 420859
3. An ICM poll from June 2006 showed that 81% of the British public believes that any decision on Trident replacement should be made by Parliament, not the Prime Minister alone. Click here for a full copy of the poll.
4 . According to a July 2006 ICM poll, 59% of the British public opposes a replacement of Trident when presented with a cost of at least £25 billion. Click here for a full copy of the poll.
5 . The Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament (CND) is one of Europe’s biggest single-issue peace campaigns, with over 32,000 members in the UK. CND campaigns for the abolition of all nuclear weapons everywhere.