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Official Statements

Letters of Protest and Statement

2002/2/15
Protest against subcritical nuclear tests conducted by America and the UK

His Excellency George W. Bush
The President
The United States of America

On February 14, the United States collaborated with the United Kingdom to conduct its 16th subcritical nuclear test at the underground test site in Nevada.

With the rest of the world working hard to prevent the proliferation of nuclear weapons and to abolish all such weapons as soon as possible, your subcritical nuclear testing and your apparent determination to cling to nuclear weapons on into the 21st century amount to a betrayal of the atomic bomb survivors and the vast majority around the world who want nothing more than the elimination of such weapons. Your unilateral abrogation of the ABM treaty and your failure to attend the Conference on Facilitating the Entry into Force of the CTBT show your disdain for these important international efforts, and we are outraged by these and the many other ways in which the US has obstructed nuclear disarmament.

We had hoped that the cruel tragedies wrought by the dropping of atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki had taught the human race a valuable lesson. However, confronted by the fact that the United States and the United Kingdom have chosen at this delicate time to conduct a joint subcritical nuclear test, we cannot escape the feeling that we are doomed to repeat the horrors of the nuclear explosion that took place nearly 60 years ago. Your actions are profoundly harmful to the worldwide system for controlling nuclear weapons and to the process of nuclear disarmament. We are gravely concerned that you are provoking nuclear proliferation and, on behalf of the 514 cities in 103 countries and regions belonging to the Mayors for Peace, We vehemently protest.

The United States claims that its subcritical tests are required to ensure the reliability and safety of nuclear weapons and do not violate the CTBT because they involve no nuclear explosions. However, we have reason to believe that the tests are linked to the development of new nuclear weapons, and they certainly violate the spirit of the CTBT. The United States must begin listening conscientiously to the international community calling desperately for the abolition of nuclear weapons. You are obligated to work in good faith to implement your promise of an “unequivocal undertaking by the nuclear weapon states to accomplish the total elimination of their nuclear arsenals”, adopted at the NPT Review Conference. On these grounds, we demand that you immediately halt all nuclear testing, including subcritical testing, and begin working sincerely to build a new world order free from nuclear weapons.

February 15, 2002

Mayors for Peace

Tadatoshi Akiba   President   Mayor of Hiroshima  
Iccho Itoh   Vice President   Mayor of Nagasaki  
Alberto Botta   Vice President   Mayor of Como  
Herbert Schmalstieg   Vice President   Mayor of Hannover  
Catherine Margate   Vice President   Mayor of Malakoff  
Roy Walters   Vice President   Mayor of Manchester  
Jaime R. Fresnedi   Vice President   Mayor of Muntinlupa  
Yuri Chekhov   Vice President   Mayor of Volgograd  

The Right Honorable Anthony Charles Lynton Blair
Prime Minister
The United Kingdom

On February 14, the United Kingdom collaborated with the United States to carry out a subcritical nuclear test at the American underground test site in Nevada.

We are extremely disappointed to learn that the UK participated in this nuclear test, disregarding efforts by the rest of the world to prevent the proliferation of nuclear weapons and abolish all such weapons as soon as possible, and despite the visit of the president of the Mayors for Peace, our organization, to the UK last fall during which he requested directly, on behalf of it, that you work toward nuclear abolition. Your subcritical nuclear testing and your apparent determination to continue possessing nuclear weapons on into the 21st century amount to a betrayal of the atomic bomb survivors and people around the world who want nothing more than the elimination of such weapons.

We had hoped that the cruel tragedies wrought by the dropping of atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki had taught the human race a valuable lesson. However, confronted by the fact that the United States and the United Kingdom have chosen at this delicate time to conduct a joint subcritical nuclear test, We cannot escape the feeling that we are doomed to repeat the horrors of the nuclear explosions that took place nearly 60 years ago. Your actions are profoundly harmful to the worldwide system for controlling nuclear weapons and to the process of nuclear disarmament. We are gravely concerned that you are provoking nuclear proliferation and, on behalf of the 514 cities in 103 countries and regions belonging to the Mayors for Peace, We vehemently protest.

We have reason to believe that the subcritical tests are linked to the development of new nuclear weapons, and they certainly violate the spirit of the CTBT. The United Kingdom must begin listening conscientiously to the international community calling desperately for the abolition of nuclear weapons. You are obligated to work in good faith to implement your promise of an “unequivocal undertaking by the nuclear weapon states to accomplish the total elimination of their nuclear arsenals,” adopted at the NPT Review Conference. On these grounds, we demand that you immediately halt all nuclear testing, including subcritical testing, and begin working sincerely to build a new world order free from nuclear weapons.

February 15, 2002

Mayors for Peace

Tadatoshi Akiba   President   Mayor of Hiroshima  
Iccho Itoh   Vice President   Mayor of Nagasaki  
Alberto Botta   Vice President   Mayor of Como  
Herbert Schmalstieg   Vice President   Mayor of Hannover  
Catherine Margate   Vice President   Mayor of Malakoff  
Roy Walters   Vice President   Mayor of Manchester  
Jaime R. Fresnedi   Vice President   Mayor of Muntinlupa  
Yuri Chekhov   Vice President   Mayor of Volgograd  

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