Edinburgh CND News 19th February 2017

The next meeting of Edinburgh CND will be on Tuesday 7th March in the Peace and Justice Centre. It will be a special meeting with Veronika Tudhope (one of the Scottish CND co-ordinators) and we are sure that what she has to say will be of interest to many of our supporters. Veronika will be speaking from 7pm and one of the topics will be the continuing work on the Global Ban Treaty http://nuclearban.org. Before that (6.15pm) we will be having a short business meeting to discuss our future activities (including our input into the meadows festival). All are invited to that too.
+++We are interested in hearing from you, if you find the 1st Tuesday of the month a difficult time to get to meetings. Please e-mail edinburghcnd@yahoo.com

Before our next meeting there are 3 other events that may be of interest:

1. Speaking up for Women Internationally. Event organised by the Scottish Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom as part of the Audacious Women festival. Wednesday 22nd Feb 7pm to 9pm Augustine United Church George IVth bridge EH1 1LB. Scottish wilpf also are also showing their ‘Dangerous Women’ Exhibition at ‘The Little Shop of Memories’ Ocean Terminal 1st February to 3rd March.

2. Open day at Faslane Peacecamp 25th February: https://faslanepeacecamp.wordpress.com/
++++ We are also planning another another EdinburghCND trip to the camp in March

3. One day without us 20th February. EdinburghCND members will be at the Mound at 5.30pm

Other News:
1. Edinburgh CND has a new recruiting card and we hope to get it out to as many as possible over the next few months.

2. CND (UK) has published a new report which examines the security implications of Trident, Britain’s nuclear weapons system. The report was published in Parliament on 8th February at a meeting with Caroline Lucas MP (Green), Kelvin Hopkins MP (Labour), Margaret Ferrier MP (SNP), Paul Ingram (BASIC), and Richard Norton-Taylor (writer for the Guardian on defence and security).
Richard Norton-Taylor, Guardian journalist, said:
“Trident, of course, is supremely irrelevant to combating the main threat to Britain’s security, a threat which, according to Cameron, will last a generation. So violent jihadist groups, now manifest by Isis, will still be the main security threat when a new Trident fleet starts to sail in the 2030s. And such groups are not going to be deterred by any nuclear weapon, least of all such intercontinental ballistic missiles as Trident.”
This report looks into the many ways that Trident fails to protect us, with quotes from experts. The nuclear weapons system is vulnerable to emerging underwater drone technology; one of the unique selling points – that they are undetectable under water – soon won’t exist. Our report also shows why it is vulnerable to cyber attack and why it’s not an independent system.
Read the report today and share on social media, using the hashtag #StopTrident
+++++ On this website you will also find info on a Lobby of the UK parliament on 1st March and demo on 4th

3. Edinburgh CND has been active on the anti-Trump demos in Edinburgh. Here is a report of the one held on Saturday 11th February: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotland-edinburgh-east-fife-38933037

4. Edinburgh CND has also been active in building the Global Ban campaign http://nuclearban.org.http://banthebomb.org/. Here is a reply from representatives of the UK government that was received by one of our members who wrote urging the government to participate in the talks:
‘ I am replying as the Desk Officer from the Counter Proliferation & Arms Control Centre responsible for international nuclear issues.
The UK is committed to a world without nuclear weapons in line with our obligations under Article VI of the Non Proliferation Treaty (NPT). We share the deep concern at the humanitarian consequences which could result from the use of nuclear weapons. We have a strong record on nuclear disarmament – we have steadily reduced the size of our own nuclear forces by well over half since our Cold War peak and the UK stockpile now represents around 1% of the total global stockpile.
However, we firmly believe that the best way to achieve a world without nuclear weapons is through gradual multilateral disarmament negotiated using a step-by-step approach and within the framework of the NPT. We do not believe that now is the right time to start negotiations on a treaty to prohibit nuclear weapons, as the right political and security conditions that would allow the nuclear weapon States to relinquish their nuclear weapons do not yet exist. For these reasons, we, along with the other NPT nuclear weapons States and NATO allies, did not support the resolution establishing negotiations on a nuclear weapons ban treaty at the UN General Assembly.
We remain determined to work with partners across the international community to prevent proliferation and to make progress on multilateral nuclear disarmament, to build trust and confidence between nuclear and non-nuclear weapon States, and to take tangible steps toward a safer and more stable world in which countries with nuclear weapons feel able to relinquish them.
Yours sincerely
Counter Proliferation & Arms Control Centre
++++Don’t forget the petition urging UK government participation in the talks: https://petition.parliament.uk/petitions/175096
+++++f you need more information, There is a working group, so
email janet@wordsandactions.scot or come to the next meeting which
will be at the SCND office at 4.30 27th Feb

5. Another petition worth signing: APPOINT MINISTERS FOR PEACE AND DISARMAMENT
There should be a mechanism that would make it easier to achieve peace than to achieve war, easier to facilitate peace in Northern Ireland than to start a war in Iraq. It is my proposal that all UK governments must include the senior cabinet positions of Ministers for Peace and Disarmament. https://petition.parliament.uk/petitions/178703
Following the appointment of Fabian Hamilton to the position of Shadow Minister for Peace and Disarmament – a post created in 2016 by Labour Leader Jeremy Corbyn – it is my proposal that from now on all UK governments must include the senior cabinet positions of Ministers for Peace and Disarmament.

6. The Campaign against the arms trade are also sponsoring an important petition:
A pension scheme managed by Edinburgh City Council for it’s staff is sitting on arms investments worth £128 million. The Lothian Pensions Trust invests in major arms companies including BAE Systems, whose weapons are currently playing a central role in Saudi Arabia’s devastating attacks on Yemen. BAE’s weapons have been used to commit human rights abuses across the globe, from suppressing pro-democracy protests in Bahrain to Israel’s deadly attacks in Gaza. So why is Edinburgh Council investing for the future with them?
Campaign Against Arms Trade and the Edinburgh Peace and Justice Centre have launched a petition to the City of Edinburgh Council to do everything within its power to require that Lothian Pensions Trust divest from all arms companies. We need 200 signatures to get our petition accepted and appear before the Lothian Pensions Trust to present the petition- and we’re already nearly halfway there! Please add your name today, and share with friends to help Edinburgh Campaign Against Arms Trade group reach their goal. The petition can only be signed by Edinburgh residents aged over 16 and you can sign the petition by clicking onto the link below. https://crm.caat.org.uk/sites/all/modules/civicrm/extern/url.php?u=2164&qid=1007694
Edinburgh CAAT are asking you to forward to friends and also asking us to ‘save a date’:Saturday, 15th April,when they will be holding a day training event (between 10:30pm and 3:30pm) with external facilitators to explore creative campaign approaches and develop a strategy for campaigning against the arms trade in Scotland.

7. The next meeting of the Scottish Peace Network will take place on Monday, February 20, in the Peace and Justice Centre just off of the Royal Mile in Edinburgh. Their monthly vigil will take place on Thursday, February 23, from 5-6pm at the Dewar´¨s statue on Buchanan Street in Glasgow city centre.

And yet more:
1. The following motion will be going to the SNP conference:
UN NUCLEAR WEAPON TREATY BAN: Conference welcomes the UN Treaty Ban Conference taking place this month (March 2017) to negotiate a legally binding instrument to prohibit nuclear weapons, leading towards their total elimination; understands that the UK Government voted to oppose this discussion happening as a Nuclear Weapon State without any consultation with Scotland or the Scottish Government.
Conference reaffirms its commitment to ridding Scotland and the world of nuclear weapons; welcomes any new instruments that will add urgency to the need for unilateral nuclear disarmament to create a safe and peaceful environment in Scotland that we all aspire to; and in the event of independence, calls on the Scottish Government to make international, unilateral disarmament of nuclear weapons a top priority of its international relations strategy.

2. Support for independence surges to 49% as the roof caves in on Theresa May’s “Scotland will have to lump it” doctrine
SCOT goes POP!: Support for independence surges to 49% as the roof caves in on Theresa May’s “Scotland will have to lump it” doctrine from James Kelly’s Tweet

3. For the latest news from Australia: https://walkingforcountry.com/

4. A campaign has been started to lift the sanctions against Zimbabwe. Contact
jeanpierrebarrois@gmail.com for more details

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