The Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament welcomes yesterday’s announcement of a nuclear moratorium by North Korea.
Talks between US and North Korean officials in Beijing have yielded positive developments, including a halt to uranium enrichment as well as the testing of long-range missiles.
The agreement – based on US food aid assistance to North Korea – should give pause for thought in current discussions over Iran’s alleged nuclear ambitions.
“This is a glimpse of what can be achieved through positive diplomatic measures and addressing the real concerns of states” said CND’s General Secretary, Kate Hudson. “Such an approach would be better employed with Iran, rather than the continually escalating calls for military intervention which would be disastrous for the region and the world.”
North Korea withdrew from the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) in 2003, stating that it had a deterrent need to develop nuclear weapons, after being listed as a potential target in the US’s Nuclear Posture Review and its infamous naming as part of the “Axis of Evil” by then President George W. Bush. The country has since developed its nuclear capabilities in secret – with its current nuclear capacity remaining unclear.
“States which are threatened may seek to close off from the international system but that process can be reversed through diplomatic initiatives. Diplomatic steps towards global disarmament must be applauded, and though there is much to be done, this is a small step in the right direction,” stated Kate Hudson. “However, this same principle, securing nuclear disarmament, must be applied to all nuclear weapons states, including our own arsenal, Trident.”
“This May, the UK is participating in the UN’s nuclear non-proliferation conference in Vienna. It won’t be enough for our government to engage in finger-pointing. We want to see concrete developments on Britain’s disarmament obligations too, and an end to the massively expensive plans to replace Trident.”