Events in the UK
Write to David Miliband Today
Dear CADU Friends and Members, the International Coalition to Ban Uranium Weapons (ICBUW) urgently needs your help in persuading the government to support a new resolution at the UN First Committee. The resolution is a continuation of the process started last November when a vast majority of states backed a resolution highlighting concerns over the health and environmental effects of uranium weapons.
The Non-Aligned Movement has now submitted a second resolution that will keep the issue alive in the UN for the next two years. ICBUW had hoped that the text would call for a moratorium but the political will is not there yet, particularly in a majority of NATO member states.
We need you and your member groups to contact your MPs and David Miliband with a request that the UK support this resolution. The First Committee vote will be early in November, the General Assembly vote a month later. The resolution is entitled: A/C.1/63/L.26 Effects of the use of armaments and munitions containing depleted uranium.
For a full copy of the text visit: http://www.bandepleteduranium.org/en/a/199.html
Last year many states were unprepared for the resolution and it passed with a huge majority, this year DU users and producers have been piling on the pressure so the outcome is far less assured. People power can make a huge difference to this campaign and now is the time to apply it.
I have written a model letter for you to use below, although if you can add to and alter it to make it your own please do so.
I am deeply concerned about the continued use of conventional weapons containing uranium. Because of their long-term impact on human health and the environment, I believe they breach the basic norms of International Humanitarian Law and the Geneva Conventions.
The United Nations First Committee will vote on a resolution calling for further research on the issue at the start of November and I firmly believe that our country should support it. Furthermore, the reports currently being promoted by the UN's three agencies, the IAEA, UNEP and WHO are either out of date or lacking key peer reviewed data and field research. This resolution will go some way to resolving that state of affairs.
While detailed epidemiological evidence from areas where these weapons have been used is still being gathered, the vast majority of in-vitro studies suggest that uranium weapons constitute a long-term hazard to the military and civilians alike. The evidence is already strong enough to support swift action under the Precautionary Principle - if this was an issue of consumer or domestic environmental safety they would already be banned.
The weapons are already banned in Belgium and in May this year 94% of MEPs backed a resolution calling for a global moratorium on their use. Therefore I urge the UK to support A/C.1/63/L.26 ' Effects of the use of armaments and munitions containing depleted uranium' at the UN First Committee and the General Assembly.
For a full copy of the text and more background please visit: http://www.bandepleteduranium.org/en/a/198.html