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St Columbans Mission Society has endorsed the Joint Interfaith Statement Welcoming the First Meeting of the States Parties to the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons. The statement (see below) has been endorsed by 144 organizations around the world.
The Joint Interfaith Statement highlights the increased threats by nuclear armed states: “We gather at a time when the threat of nuclear annihilation feels closer than before. So many more of us suffer from anxiety in response to the increasing threats by nuclear armed states. In the face of these urgent existential threats, we are more determined than ever to abolish nuclear weapons.”
The statement urges resources currently spent on nuclear weapons to be directed towards supporting the most vulnerable in our world:
“We are acutely aware of the threats facing humanity and our beloved planet. From the devastating impacts of a global pandemic to the rising threat of climate catastrophe, the stakes for life on earth have never felt higher. Nuclear weapons represent a tangible manifestation of the worst of these threats with the risk they pose to human health and environmental stability. The resources currently spent on the development and maintenance of these weapons should be directed towards supporting the most vulnerable people and protecting the planet through investing in food, education, health care and climate justice.”
The statement underscores each faith tradition’s call to end nuclear weapons forever: “Our faith traditions call us to denounce this misuse of resources and to call for greater international cooperation to end nuclear weapons forever. Nuclear weapons are a tool of domination and violent coercion in a time when we urgently need to prioritize human security. Our religious and spiritual traditions uphold an ethos of mutual aid, care for the stranger and trust in the community.”
Fr Kevin O’Neill
Peace, Ecology and Justice Office
Columban Mission Center, Essendon.