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2013-03-08

ASIA - Civil and religious leaders united against nuclear weapons

Oslo (Agenzia Fides) - In front of dangerous wings of nuclear escalation and provocations launched recently by countries such as North Korea, religious leaders and civil society in the world raise a cry to stop nuclear weapons and recall as a warning "the humanitarian impact of nuclear weapons." As reported in a note sent to Fides, the "International Campaign for the Abolition of Nuclear Weapons (ICAN) held a meeting in recent days in Oslo,that included many religious leaders, more than 500 representatives of civil society and representatives of 132 governments, who examined the "disastrous consequences of nuclear weapons." Diplomats, scientists, activists pointed out that the present race of nuclear energy, for civil and military purposes, "has devastating effects on people's health and the environment."
The conference saw the participation of the leaders of the "World Council of Churches" that called on the world governments "to act responsibly." Among the voices present, the Nigerian Cardinal John Onaiyekan, Archbishop of Abuja, said that "in a civil world nuclear weapons have no place." Position shared by the head of the International Committee of the Red Cross, Peter Maurer. In the case of nuclear weapons, prevention and prohibition are "the only way forward," he added. The Japanese Bishop, Mgr Laurence Yutaka Minabe, born to parents who survived Hiroshima, told his experience and how his father died of cancer due to radiation.
Some countries in Africa and Latin America, that have expressly turned down nuclear weapons - the conference concluded - can provide "moral leadership" to international efforts to "free the world from nuclear weapons and prevent global disaster that their use would create". (PA) (Agenzia Fides 08/03/2013)

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