This is a big week for the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons, the coalition of 440 organizations from all over the world – many from the Global South – that is striving to ban the bomb. It is a big week for everyone concerned about growing nuclear threats around the world, from North Korea’s missile and warhead testing and dangerous pronouncements made by Donald Trump, to a new arms race that’s gaining speed between the US, Russia and even China, among others.
Two years ago, ICAN mobilized civil society and governments around the Vienna Conference, where scores of countries pledged their support to stigmatizing nuclear weapons “in light of their unacceptable humanitarian consequences, ” in the words of ICAN Executive Director Beatrice Fihn. And late last year, 123 countries voted for a UN resolution to kick-start talks to “negotiate a legally binding instrument to prohibit nuclear weapons, leading their total elimination.”
Today negotiations officially began at United Nations headquarters in New York between most world nations.
A first-time grantee, ICAN brings valuable international perspective to Ploughshares Fund’s advocacy work that in recent years had focused almost exclusively on influencing US policy to reduce nuclear threats. In these profoundly dangerous times, we are committed to exploring every avenue, strategy and opportunity to reduce nuclear threats – wherever they come from.