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Nations have moral duty to destroy nuclear weapons, Vatican envoy tells UN

In Human rights, Justice, Nuclear abolition, Nuclear Guardianship, Nuclear Policy, Peace, War on April 3, 2017 at 10:19 pm

Catholic World Service, March 29, 2017

“The threat of mutually assured destruction through nuclear weapons cannot be the basis for an ethics of fraternity and peaceful coexistence among peoples and states,” the Vatican’s delegate said in an address to a UN session on nuclear disarmament.

Archbishop Bernardito Auza called the attention of UN members to the call by Pope Francis for the complete elimination of all nuclear weapons. He said that all states have a moral obligation to stop nuclear proliferation and to destroy their own stockpiles of nuclear arms.

Nuclear weapons cause “unnecessary suffering” for survivors, the archbishop argued, and “merit unequivocal and unhesitating condemnation.” He argued that states should provide compensation for people harmed by radiation from nuclear tests.

Archbishop Auza said that the UN’s discussion of disarmament was itself “an act of defiance against the logic of fear.” He called for universal acceptance of the principle that conflicts should be resolved by dialogue.

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