After reports by the EurActiv news web site that the United States has begun the transfer of nuclear weapons stationed in Turkey to the Deveselu air base in Romania, campaigners have condemned the decision and said such a move is illegal under international law.

Kate Hudson, CND general secretary, said:

“Let’s be clear, if reports are true, this move is both illegal and very dangerous.

“Article one of the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) specifically prohibits the transfer of nuclear weapons to non-nuclear-weapon states. So what the United States government has sanctioned is illegal, and article two of the NPT makes clear that it would be illegal for Romania to accept these weapons.

“Riding rough shod over international law when the NPT has been the best international tool for preventing the proliferation of nuclear weapons is remarkably dangerous. It signals to the world that the nuclear powers are not serious about disarmament and makes proliferation far more likely.

“If the US is concerned about the safety of its nuclear weapons, illegally hosted in Turkey, it should use this opportunity to remove all its nuclear weapons from Europe. That would be a step towards fulfilling its international obligations.”