Santa Barbara – Some 73 civil society leaders from 22 countries around the world have lent their support to the people and government of the Marshall Islands and the Nuclear Zero Lawsuits.
On April 24, 2014, The Marshall Islands (RMI) filed unprecedented lawsuits in the International Court of Justice and US Federal Court to hold the nine nuclear-armed nations accountable for flagrant violations of international law with respect to their nuclear disarmament obligations under the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) and customary international law.
In a strong show of unity and encouragement, Nobel Peace Laureates Archbishop Desmond Tutu and Mairead Maguire, founder of Physicians for Social Responsibility, Helen Caldicott and many other peace and social justice leaders have signed an open letter stating, “In taking this action, you, and any governments that choose to join you, are acting on behalf of all the seven billion people who now live on Earth and on behalf of the generations yet unborn who could never be born if nuclear weapons are ever used in large numbers.”
The letter goes on to say, “Win or lose in the coming legal arguments, what you, and any who join you, will do has the deepest moral significance, going far beyond the specific interests of any country or government and beyond the usual calculations of national self-interest.”
David Krieger, President of the Nuclear Age Peace Foundation and a consultant to the Marshall Islands on the legal and moral issues of the case, commented, “The Marshall Islanders are unselfishly acting for the good of all humanity. This small island nation is the true David standing up to the nine nuclear Goliaths. The Marshallese people have suffered irreparable damage from the U.S. nuclear testing program. Yet this lawsuit does not seek monetary reparations. Rather, it seeks the fulfillment of promises made for negotiations for the total elimination of nuclear weapons so that no other nation will suffer as they have. The courage of this small island nation is remarkable.”
The open letter was presented in Parliament by Marshall Islands’ Foreign Minister Tony de Brum on the last day of their 2014 session. To read the letter in its entirety, go to wagingpeace.org/rmi-open-letter. To find out more about the Nuclear Zero Lawsuits, visit nuclearzero.org.