Bishops call for nuclear disarmament

Bishops in the United States and across Europe have called for complete nuclear disarmament.

Even a limited nuclear exchange would have devastating consequences for people and the planet, they say.

Their pleas for banning nuclear weapons come days after after North Korea tested an intercontinental ballistic missile that could reach Alaska.

“Tragically, human error or miscalculation could lead to a humanitarian catastrophe,” they say in a declaration.

“We call upon the United States and European nations to work with other nations to map out a credible, verifiable and enforceable strategy for the total elimination of nuclear weapons.”

Entitled “Nuclear Disarmament: Seeking Human Security,” the bishops issued the declaration to coincide with the conclusion of a meeting hosted this week by the United Nations (UN).

The meeting’s aim is “to negotiate a legally binding treaty to prohibit nuclear weapons, leading towards their total elimination.”

The bishops’ declaration warns the UN that although the “horror of a potential nuclear war” calmed down following the end of the Cold War, “recent geopolitical developments” have reignited the fears.

They also point out that spending resources on building nuclear weapons was a waste of money, when it should be used for sustainable development projects.

“Our world has become increasingly multipolar,” they say.

In this respect, they  note the world is currently faced with a variety of threats, including terrorism, asymmetrical conflicts, cybersecurity, environmental degradation and poverty.

“These raise doubts about the adequacy of nuclear deterrence as an effective response to these challenges,” they say.

Pope Francis has made the same points on a number of occasions.


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News category: World.

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