The UK & Ireland Nuclear Free Local Authorities (NFLA) welcomes the decision of Glasgow City Council to pass a resolution yesterday supporting the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons (TPNW), as part of the ICAN Cities Appeal. As Scotland’s largest local authority and the headquarters of NFLA Scotland, we are particularly pleased it has given its strong support to a nuclear weapons free world. (1)
Across the world, over 400 towns, cities, counties and federal states have passed TPNW resolutions, including Paris, Berlin, Oslo, Barcelona, Washington DC, Sydney, Amsterdam, Bruges, Geneva, Montreal, Hiroshima and Nagasaki. (2)
In the UK, Glasgow becomes the 20th Council to pass a resolution supporting the TPNW. The others include Manchester, Edinburgh, Leeds, Brighton and Hove, East Ayrshire, Fife, Hastings, Lancaster, Newham, Tower Hamlets, Norwich, Oxford, Renfrewshire, Bangor, Hebden Royd Town, Shaw and Crompton , Todmorden, Blackshaw Head and Shipley Town Council.
The Glasgow resolution was supported by a large cross-party majority of councillors and was tabled by the NFLA Scotland Convener, Councillor Feargal Dalton, as well as being formally supported by the NFLA UK & Ireland Steering Committee Vice-Chair, Councillor Bill Butler.
There is strong support in Scotland for concerted action to work for multilateral nuclear disarmament. As well as the five Scottish Councils who have passed a TPNW resolution, there are also six Scottish Councils who have passed resolutions calling for their Council Pension Funds to divest funds from fossil fuels and nuclear weapon investments – they are Renfrewshire, West Dunbartonshire, Fife, Midlothian, East Ayrshire and Inverclyde Councils. (3)
NFLA are a member of the civil society Nobel Peace Laureate, the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons (ICAN), as well as being a partner with the Hiroshima and Nagasaki-led Mayors for Peace. Plans are in place to encourage its members to support activities supporting the TPNW and encouraging divestment. A joint webinar on these matters is being planned later this year in preparation for the first States Parties Conference of the TPNW, which takes place in January 2022 in Vienna.
54 states have supported the TPNW and a further 32 states are in the process of ratifying it. NFLA, Mayors for Peace and ICAN are encouraging NATO member states who currently do not support the TPNW to observe the States Parties Conference and see the further benefits of engaging with it, at a time when there have been worrying trends around the world to increase and modernise nuclear weapon stockpiles, as well as other weapons of mass destruction.
The ICAN Cities Appeal supporting the TPNW allows councils to make a strong statement of solidarity in supporting the urgent need to encourage multilateral nuclear disarmament and a more peaceful world.
NFLA Scotland Convener, Glasgow City Councillor Feargal Dalton, said:
“Over the past four decades, Glasgow City Council has been a leading supporter of the Nuclear Free Local Authorities and the Mayors for Peace and its campaigns to work for a world without nuclear weapons, improving wider nuclear safety and effectively tackling the climate emergency. I am delighted Glasgow councillors have backed this resolution supporting the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons. We also call on the UK Government to not just engage with this treaty process, and completely reverse its current defence policy increasing the number of Trident warheads stored just a few miles from Glasgow at Faslane. Glasgow City Council will continue to work with NFLA and Mayors for Peace and engage with civil society groups like ICAN in this endeavour. Glasgow seeks to send a powerful message of solidarity to this great cause.”
Ends – for more information please contact Sean Morris, NFLA Secretary, on 07771 930196.
Notes to Editors:
(1) Glasgow City Council resolution, 13th May 2021
“Glasgow City Council is a member of the UK & Ireland Nuclear Free Local Authorities and the Hiroshima-led Mayors for Peace; both of which have been working for 4 decades to promote multilateral nuclear disarmament.
“NFLA and Mayors for Peace work with the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons (ICAN), which received the Nobel Peace Prize in 2017 for its work in encouraging over two thirds of United Nations members to agree to the International Treaty to Prohibit Nuclear Weapons (TPNW). Council regrets that the Governments of the existing nuclear weapon states, including the UK, refuse to support the Treaty. Council fully supports the TPNW as one of the most effective ways to bring about long-term and verifiable multilateral nuclear disarmament and is pleased it has entered into force on 22nd January 2021.
“The Council also calls on the United Kingdom Government to lead a global effort to prevent nuclear conflict by:
- renouncing the option of using nuclear weapons first;
- cancelling the plan to replace its entire Trident nuclear arsenal with enhanced weapons;
- actively pursuing a verifiable agreement among nuclear-armed states to eliminate their nuclear arsenals by supporting the Treaty to Prohibit Nuclear Weapons and the ‘Good Faith’ Protocols within the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty.
“The Council instructs the Chief Executive to write to the UK Government to inform them of this resolution and urge them to take account of it; and to ICAN to endorse their Cities Appeal supporting the TPNW.”
(2) ICAN Cities Appeal list of supporting councils –
(3) Information on Scottish Council Pension Fund investments in nuclear weapons can be found at the Don’t Bank on the Bomb Scotland website https://nukedivestmentscotland.org/how-can-we-divest-the-slgps/. NFLA is actively engaging with councils to encourage divestment from fossil fuels and nuclear weapon investments in such funds.