Webinar: Why hasn’t Canada signed the UN Nuclear Ban Treaty?
Join a webinar on the need for Canada to sign the UN Nuclear Ban Treaty, featuring Liberal MP Hedy Fry, NDP MP Heather McPherson, Green Party MP Elizabeth May, Bloc Québécois MP Alexis Brunelle-Duceppe as well as Setsuko Thurlow, survivor of the atomic bombing of Hiroshima who jointly accepted the Nobel Peace Prize on behalf of the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons.
Canada has not joined 122 countries represented at the July 2017 UN Conference to Negotiate a Legally Binding Instrument to Prohibit Nuclear Weapons, Leading Towards their Total Elimination. It has also declined to sign the resulting UN Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons, which recently garnered its 50th state signatory meaning it will enter into force in 90 days.
Nuclear weapons constitute one of the most serious threats facing humanity. Nuclear explosions over cities could quickly kill tens of millions. 1% of the 13,400 nuclear weapons in the world could disrupt the global climate and threaten billions with starvation in a nuclear famine.
Canada’s 2017 defence policy ignores the threat nuclear weapons pose to human survival (North Korean nuclear weapons are mentioned once). But, the defence policy, “Strong, Secure, Engaged” makes two dozen references to Canada’s commitment to the nuclear-armed NATO alliance.
The Trudeau government asserts it cannot ratify the UN Ban Treaty because of Canada’s membership in NATO, which has a nuclear weapons first-strike policy.
The NDP, Greens & Bloc Québécois have all called on Canada to adopt the UN Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons. Some Liberal & Conservative MPs, as well as thousands of Canadians, have also called on Canada to adopt the Treaty.
As the UN Ban Treaty is about to become international law, this discussion on Canada’s policies on nuclear weapons with Members of Parliament is more urgent than ever.
Setsuko Thurlow was thirteen years old when she witnessed the atomic bombing of Hiroshima. She has been a leading anti-nuclear weapons activist in Canada and globally and jointly accepted the Nobel Peace Prize on behalf of the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons in 2017.
Dr. Hedy Fry, first elected as Liberal MP in Vancouver Centre in 1993, is a member of the Standing Committee on Foreign Affairs and International Development. She is the co-chair of Parliamentarians for Nuclear Non-Proliferation and Disarmament Canada.
Alexis Brunelle-Duceppe is the Bloc Québécois MP for Lac-Saint-Jean. He is Vice-Chair of the Subcommittee on International Human Rights of the Standing Committee on Foreign Affairs and International Development as well as of the Standing Committee on National Defence.
Heather McPherson, the NDP MP for Edmonton Strathcona, is the Deputy House Leader of the New Democratic Party, NDP Critic for International Development, and Deputy Critic for Foreign Affairs.
Elizabeth May has been the Green Party MP for Saanich-Gulf Islands in B.C. since 2011 and is the Green Party Parliamentary Leader in the House of Commons.
Organizers: The Canadian Foreign Policy Institute and The Hiroshima Nagasaki Day Coalition (Toronto)
Co-sponsors: PeaceQuest, Science for Peace, Les Artistes pour la Paix
Media Sponsor: Canadian Dimension
Friends of Rotary (FOR) Prevention of Nuclear War
McGill Students for Peace and Disarmament
Mouvement Québécois pour la Paix
Ottawa Peace Council
Pax Christi Toronto
Peace Quest Cape Breton
Project Ploughshares Saskatoon
Regina Peace Council
Tao Sangha Global Community
Toronto Article 9
John Polanyi, Nobel Laureate
Joy Kogawa, poet, novelist, author of Obasan and Gently to Nagasaki.
Please see Les Artistes pour la Paix/Artists for Peace website.
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Article: Why Won’t Canada Back a Nuclear Weapons’ Ban? | The Tyee | By Bianca Mugyenyi
Article: Legacy of Canada’s role in atomic bomb is felt by northern Indigenous community| The Conversation | By Geoffrey Bird
Pierre Jasmin, “Appel de Mme Setsuko Thurlow au Premier ministre” http://www.artistespourlapaix.org/?p=19078
Motoko Rich, “Witnessing Nuclear Carnage, Then Devoting Her Life to Peace,” https://www.nytimes.com/2020/08/06/world/asia/hiroshima-japan-setsuko-thurlow.html
Michael Swan, “Nuclear Arms and Canada” https://www.catholicregister.org/item/32339-nuclear-arms-and-canada
Setsuko Thurlow’s June 2020 appeal to Prime Minister Trudeau http://hiroshimadaycoalition.ca/data/uploads/to-the-right-honourable-justin-trudeau.pdf
Anton Wagner, “Canada and the Atom Bomb” http://hiroshimadaycoalition.ca/data/uploads/canada-and-the-atom-bomb.pdf
Anton Wagner, “Mackenzie King Opens the Atomic Pandora’s Box” http://nikkeivoice.ca/mackenzie-king-opens-the-atomic-pandoras-box/