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The UK government has announced it will increase the number of nuclear warheads in its arsenal for the first time since the Cold War.

ACTION

Protest is a fundamental right in our society and CND is making our opposition to this announcement clear.

Put pressure on your MP
A cross-party group of MPs has submitted a Parliamentary motion – EDM 1667 – condemning the increase. Write to your MP to ask them to support it.

Contact the Prime Minister
Let Boris Johnson know your opposition to his plan and ask him to build the kind of world we want to live in.

Join CND
The larger our movement, the louder our voice.

Legal opinion
Read a legal opinion commissioned by CND on how Britain is breaching international law.

CND emergency rally: watch again
If you missed CND’s emergency rally, you can watch it back and share. We were joined by speakers including Jeremy Corbyn MP, Lowkey, Caroline Lucas MP, Kirsten Oswald MP, Victoria Brittain, the Archbishop of York, Stephen Cottrell, Lindsey German (Stop the War), Bruce Kent, Kevin Blowe (Netpol),  Christine Blower, Paul Rogers, Andrew Feinstein, Baroness Jenny Jones, Kirsten Bays -(Campaign Against the Arms Trade), Nick Dearden (Global Justice), Baroness Smith of Newnham, Lesley Morrison (Medact).

The Integrated Review

The integrated review of security, defence, development and foreign policy published on March 16th included a 40% increase in the stockpile. The UK currently has around 200 warheads, but had previously announced a cap of 180 by the mid-2020s. It will now increase this cap to 260 warheads.

Shamefully the government also announced it will stop publishing information on the number of warheads and missiles in operation, making scrutiny – including of the out of control costs of Britain’s nuclear weapons system – even more difficult. In addition, the integrated review included a change in use posture – the government will now consider using nuclear weapons in response to non-nuclear threats, including ‘emerging technologies’ which could mean a cyber-attack.

We don’t want to increase the potential of using nuclear weapons. And we don’t want any more of them. In fact, we don’t want any. And polling published earlier this year showed that 77% of the public agree and want a total ban on all nuclear weapons globally.

The real threats facing us today are painfully obvious to see – we should be using our resources to deal with actual problems such as climate change and the pandemic. We should not be spending billions of pounds on weapons of mass destruction when investment is urgently needed in our NHS, education system and green jobs. It’s notable that the government’s priority isn’t to give nurses a well-deserved pay-rise, but to get more nuclear weapons.

It is being asked across Parliament and the media if this is even legal. The answer is a resounding No. Increasing Britain’s nuclear arsenal contravenes our legal obligations under the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty, which Britain ratified in 1970. The Treaty requires countries that have nuclear weapons to disarm, and those that don’t have them not to get them. There is no way in which increasing a nuclear arsenal is legitimate under the Treaty.

This development is hugely provocative on the global stage: the first step in a new nuclear arms race.