Ansari calls for global nuclear disarmament

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New Delhi, Mar 9 (UNI) Expressing concern over the increasing nuclear arms race among countries, Vice-President Mohammad Hamid Ansari today said reaffirmation of the unequivocal commitment of all nuclear-weapon States is necessary to the goal of complete elimination of nuclear weapons.

Addressing the 18th World Congress of International Physicians for the Prevention of Nuclear War (IPPNW) organised by the Indian Doctors for Peace and Development (IDPD) here, he said, ''Negotiation of a convention on the complete prohibition of the use or threat of use of nuclear weapons is a foremost requisite for India in joining the lobby''.

Also, negotiation of a nuclear weapons convention prohibiting the development, production, stockpiling and use of nuclear weapons and on their destruction, leading to the global, non-discriminatory and verifiable elimination of nuclear weapons with a specified time frame is warranted, he said.

Mr Ansari said,''Despite in-principle agreement, world needs a global dialouge and political will to find practical and necessary solutions to end this lethal race. The horrors of the use of nuclear weapons have convinced all responsible nations that elimination of nuclear weapons is necessary.'' IPPNW is the sole international medical organisation dedicated to preventing nuclear war and abolishing nuclear weapons.

Recalling what late former Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi said in his speech in the United Nations, Mr Ansari argued ''Though India helped the movement in form of non-alignment, we cannot accept the logic that a few nations have the right to pursue their security by threatening the survival of mankind...nor is it acceptable that those who possess nuclear weapons are freed of all controls while those without nuclear weapons are policed against their production.'' Dr Gunnar Wetburg president of IPPNW said the World never wanted another nuclear war to happen, ''it had happened once now we did not want it again that was why complete abolishment of production and stockpiling of nuclear war weapons was required.'' Moreover, most of money that went into maintaining war budgets could provide relief to crores of needy people.

Health, Education, Develoment, Poverty are the sectors which need real attention and ''it is a shame after witnessing a nuke attack six decades back we still need these congresses to emphasis the need for abolition of nuke weapons,'' he pointed out.

Giving a rough idea about the existing nuclear war weapons in the world, Dr Livtar Singh Chawla president IDPD said that world today has 27,720 war weapons, 15,000 alone with the Russia, 10,000 with the US and Britain, France, China, India, Pakistan having some few hundreds and it is a big threat.

Hoping that world would understand these threats, Mr Chawla said ''we had made this forum in 1980 to spread awareness regarding threats and danger of nuclear weapons which has the potential to blight whole present and future generation of human race and as a doctor I know medically nothing could be possible then.'' On being asked what concrete steps the organisation had taken except awareness campaigns, he said ''it was in our policy to talk to all the decision makers of the eight countries who possessed nuclear weapons, and in South Asia, which was our maiden visit, we had talk to the President of India regarding these issues. She had offered her full support only if countries like Russia and US were ready to take the lead.'' Others, who attended the Congress included Senator Douglas, Dr Ime John co president of IPPNW and Dr Arun Mitra.

Apart from these, 650 delegates from 58 countries attended the Congress which was organised for the first time in South Asia.


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