Edinburgh CND News 18th May 2017. Update on 21st and 23rd

ICAN welcomes the release of a draft treaty to ban nuclear weapons as an essential milestone in the years-long effort to ban these indiscriminate weapons of mass destruction because of their inhumane and catastrophic impacts. Once adopted, the treaty will constitute an important step towards their eventual elimination.

The draft language provides a good basis for a strong, categorical prohibition of nuclear weapons. The President of the negotiations, Ambassador Elayne Whyte has captured many key elements proposed during the first negotiating session in March.

Read the draft treaty text here
We expect more debate over the articles and provisions in the text as this process moves forward and ICAN will be advocating to ensure the strongest possible treaty. We are confident that a treaty prohibiting nuclear weapons can be agreed and adopted by July 7.
‘Plants for Peace’
Meadows Festival Saturday/Sunday 3rd/4th June 2017
New for 2017: plant creche, new for 2017: expert gardening advice (free to Edinburgh CND members, donation otherwise).
Once again Edinburgh CND are going to have a campaigning and fundraising stall at the Meadows Festival in June, selling plants, bric a brac, books, clothes etc. Funds raised at previous Meadows stalls have helped in all areas of our work to ban the bomb.
A local folk band will be playing, and we’ve entered the most environmental stall competition with every hope of winning!
Can you help?
YOUR TIME:
Can you give some time to help on the stall? No previous experience necessary and great fun!
Best is to sign up for a fixed time, say a two hour slot, let me know by email as soon as you can.
If you really can’t commit, just come along anyway when you’re free on those days!
STUFF:
Have you any books, bric a brac or plants you can donate? Best is if you can bring them along yourself on the Saturday or Sunday.
Please let me know what you’ve got and when roughly you’ll bring it.
If you really can’t get along to the festival (and it is a fun event to be at) contact me soon and we’ll try to collect.
Donations can possibly also be received before the festival-contact me!
This year’s target is to buy a laptop as a 35th birthday present for Faslane Peace Camp, to help them monitor the base and it’s warhead convoys, to protest at nukes on Scottish soil, to blog, and to provide a portal for whistleblowers.
Please email edinburghcnd@yahoo.com if  you can help (even for a short time)
BAN TREATY UPDATE
+++++If you missed our meeting on the 17th you can catch up here: https://www.facebook.com/EdinburghCND/

http://uk.icanw.org/campaign/partner-organizations/
Costa Rica announced today that the draft ban treaty text is going to be launched on Monday at 4pm Geneva time (3pm ours) – ICAN will be trying to livestream this and there will be an event in Edinburgh (more details to follow)

There was a briefing meeting for groups (and individuals) living in Scotland to work out how to make sure Scotland knows about the Ban Treaty, and to plan how to share this good news as widely as we can. In March 132 countries took part in a New York Conference, set up by the UN to on write a Nuclear Weapons Ban Treaty. They were very successful, all the important aspects were included and the chair will set out the draft Treaty this month. The next step, working through the draft, happens from the 15th June till the 7the July. Although this is the UN plan, the nuclear weapons states are expected to continue their boycott of the process, and we can’t rely on coverage by the mainstream UK press.
There will be a huge march to support the Treaty, the Women’s March To Ban The Bomb, on Saturday 17th June in New York, with a Scottish banner and supporters there. Solidarity events are expected around the world. Including in Edinburgh where we plane to be at the Mound from 4pm
 The testimony of nuclear weapons survivors and the civil society organisations like The International Red Cross, nuclear disarmament campaigning groups along with scientists and doctors have been crucial in getting things this far. The UN has said this very clearly; including Ireland, Austria and Switzerland.
Scotland is not a member of UN in its own right, even though campaigners from Scotland have been active in getting the Treaty under way. Scotland’s Ban Treaty Working Group is open to anyone who wants to help. We have a wee team going to New York in June, to share the NGO work of monitoring and lobbying as well as sending messages and pictures home.
Can you help to make sure there is a second team at home, with plenty of action in Scotland to get people to follow the talks about the Ban Treaty and tell their friends and the media about it? Please consider if you can support community action, street events, meetings, social media campaigns, phone-ins or other activity during the Conference. 
At the meeting we can bring you up to speed on what’s happened already, and some of what we might expect. SCND has started work on a website and got some leaflets cards and posters for everyone. At the meeting we’ll work out the plan together so groups and individuals can all play a part during this important year.  All welcome There will be a meeting of the Ban Treaty working group same day: 18th May at 4.30 p.m. In SCND Office. Minutes of 10th May meeting are available.

More information: http://www.reachingcriticalwill.org and Also we have an information collection from David Lowry (available on request)

 For the Future: UNFOLD ZERO calls on you to support the High Level Conference on Nuclear Disarmament which the United Nations will hold in 2018 to enhance progress on the global prohibition and elimination of nuclear weapons.
The UN conference will follow after the UN negotiations for a nuclear ban treaty, which non-nuclear States are conducting in 2017. It could build support for the ban treaty, and also pursue nuclear risk-reduction and disarmament measures to be adopted by the nuclear-armed and allied States.
Such measures could include de-alerting of all nuclear weapons systems, adopting no-first-use policies, ending the modernisation of nuclear weapons, re-affirming the goal of the complete elimination of nuclear weapons, and supporting the establishment of additional nuclear-weapon-free zones such as in the Middle East and North East Asia.

THE GENERAL ELECTION                                                                                                                UK CND News: General Election 2017 is an important opportunity for nuclear issues to be brought up the political agenda. As our #VoteOutNukes campaign has gathered pace, thousands of candidates have been contacted to establish their positions on Trident, the global nuclear ban, and nuclear power.
After polling day, how do we set the agenda on nuclear power?
It’s vital that we set the agenda at the beginning of the new government’s term in office. That’s why we have called a major conference to focus on the crucial question of nuclear power on 17th June.
Government research has consistently shown that renewables are now the most popular form of energy amongst the general public, yet the present government wrongly claims that renewables fail to win public support and remains committed to building a new generation of  nuclear power plants.
No need for nuclear: the renewables are here will challenge this narrative, exploring topics including what’s wrong with nuclear power; the politics of nuclear power; energy demand, energy efficiency; and the scope of renewables in the UK. Meeting in London Saturday 17 June 2017 Conway Hall, There will also be a Public meeting: Election Question Time – #VoteOutNukes 18 May 6.30pm – 8.30pm at Bloomsbury Central Baptist Church 235 Shaftesbury Avenue, WC2H 8EP London What are the parties’ policies on nuclear abolition and Trident? Is it possible to vote out Trident at the General Election 2017? The Labour Party has published its manifesto. What does it mean for Britain’s nuclear weapons system and global abolition? Read our latest news story www.cnd.org.uk
Plaid Cymru also published their manifesto this week, committing to scrap Trident, and the Liberal Democrats announced they will reduce the number of Trident submarines from 4 to 3.  On Diplomacy: Labour Party Manifesto – page 117 –“We will publish a strategy for protecting civilians in conflict, setting out detailed plans for work on conflict prevention and resolution, post-conflict peacebuilding, and justice for the victims of war crimes. Labour has created a Minister for Peace and Disarmament to lead this work.” Jeremy Corbyn has said he will appoint a minister for peace if he wins power but insisted he is “not a pacifist”. (News from Minister for Peace petition)

IN SCOTLAND: the SNP and the Greens are anti-Trident as are some Labour party candidates. We still have copies of the election special edition of our green card: Vote out Trident; Vote out Austerity. We want every candidate to be contacted many times during the campaign. None of them must think that nuclear weapons are just a side-issue. If campaigning on social media, use the #VoteOutNukes & #GE2017 hash tags.

NATO SUMMIT: CND is mobilising in support of the No to NATO protests in Brussels on Wednesday 24th and 25th May 2017, working with our partner organisations across Europe. There is a demonstration on the Wednesday and a counter-summit on the Thursday. Let us know if you would like to join our delegation. Trump Not Welcome march at NATO summit  5pm, Brussels Nord station
International Conference: Why we need a world without NATO?
9am – 6pm, Brussels

EDINBURGH WORLD JUSTICE FESTIVAL The festival will take place from 30 September to 15 October. This is a great time to get involved with the organising group, or to think about putting on an event. We aim to agree the theme at our next meeting on Monday and we welcome comments on the ideas we are working with, or other suggestions. The two current suggestions are: ‘Sources of Hope in Uncertain Times’    and ‘Peoples Movements – past and yet to come’ The next meeting of our Organising Group will be at 6 pm on Monday 22 May in the Peace and Justice Centre on Upper Bow, Edinburgh EH1 2JN. Anyone interested in volunteering to help organise the festival will be welcome.

OTHER NEWS: SEE ALSO PREVIOUS POST

  1. The NHS was brought to its knees at the end of last week because of a cyber-attack that infected Windows XP computers with malware. Trident submarines use a modified version of Windows XP called Windows for Submarines.
  2.  Scottish CND is looking for a part time Administrative Assistant Hours: 16 hours a week
    Salary: £16, 861/year pro rata (£10.04 / hour) + 6% pension contribution Purpose of the Role
    Assisting with the clerical and administrative work of Scottish CND For the full job description and application details please check our website. http://www.banthebomb.org Application deadline Friday 2nd of June 2017.  Shortlisted candidates will be approached by 12th of June for interviews on Monday 3rd of July. 
  3. The Good Soldier Schwejk’s has now a face (see earlier post): he is young actor Alfie Stewart. He has been to Sands for a first fitting and rehearsal will start after Monday Bank Holiday. We are all looking forward to this! Updates on other progress available.

On Monday 22nd May,                                                                                                                 1. at 1 P.M., Trident Ploughshares members will gather on Mound Place, Edinburgh EH1 2LU, at the Entrance to the Church of Scotland Assembly Hall for an hour and a half, to share with folk attending the church’s annual assembly the news about the UN Nuclear Ban Treaty and its significance for disarmament. They chose the 22nd since that is the day of the Church and Society report, which makes repeated mention of nuclear weapons ALSO The ELECTION DEFENCE DEBATE is being held at Royal United Services Institute (RUSI) on Monday 22 May, 2017 from 11.00 am to 12.30 pm,  with the hashtag #RUSIDebate17 and will be live- streaming the debate from this webpage: https://rusi.org/event/open-all-pre-election-defence-debate

2.New thoughts on British War Resisters 1914-1918  Speaker: Cyril Pearce
Monday 22 May at 5pm.  Free public talk National Records of Scotland
H M General Register House | 2 Princes St | Edinburgh EH1 3YY

3. 6pm EWJF meeting see below

4. Monday is the last day to register to vote in General Election 2017. It takes less than 5 minutes to register online or you can telephone your council.

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