Oslo wake-up call for nuclear abolition: 127 countries attend conference on the humanitarian impact of nuclear weapons

Delegates from 127 countries as well as several UN organisations, the International Red Cross movement, representatives of civil society and media attended the Oslo Conference on the Humanitarian Impact of Nuclear Weapons. The conference was preceded by a Civil Society Forum organised by ICAN.

A number of representatives of Parliamentarians for Nuclear Nonproliferation and Disarmament participated including PNND Co-President Bill Kidd (member of the Scottish parliament), Tarja Cronberg MEP (Chair of PNND European Parliament Section), José Roberto Rodríguez Quesada (Member of the Costa Rican National Assembly), Olle Thorell (Member of the Swedish Parliament), Vidya Shankar (assistant to PNND Co-President Mani Shankar from India), PNND Global Coordinator and the coordinators from Central Europe, Costa Rica, France, Germany, North East Asia and Sweden.

PNND youth workshop on engaging legislators, Oslo 2013 PNND youth workshop on engaging legislators, Oslo 2013
PNND and the Basel Peace Office ran a session for the parallel youth conference organised by Ban All Nukes Generation – training young advocates on how to engage with legislators and government officials.  For photos see BANG! Workshop in Oslo.

PNND and Mayors for Peace ran a joint stall at the Civil Society Forum on 'Engaging your Legislators'. Conference participants were able to go online at the stall to find contact details of their legislators, and then send them an electronic message from the Forum calling on them to take action in support of nuclear abolition. There were also 'live legislators' at the stall (a mayor and two parliamentarians) to whom civil society activists could talk in order to hone their advocacy skills and build confidence to hold meetings with their own legislators back home. For photos see "Engage with your legislator" stall in Oslo.

PNND also held a side event in the Stortinget (Norwegian Parliament) on Mar 4, co-chaired by PNND Co-President Marit Nybakk and PNND Council Member Hallgeir Langeland, and featuring Ward Wilson, author of The Penny Farthing H-Bomb and 5 Myths about Nuclear Weapons (recently reviewed in the New York Times and International Herald Tribune).  For photos see PNND Event in Norwegian Parliament.

Roundtable on humanitarian consequences of nuclear weapons, Norwegian Parliament, 2013 Roundtable on humanitarian consequences of nuclear weapons, Norwegian Parliament, 2013

Prior to the conference, PNND members in Belgium, Costa Rica, France, Ireland, New Zealand, Scotland and the United Kingdom lodged questions and/or motions in their parliaments calling on their governments to take note of the catastrophic humanitarian and environmental consequences of nuclear weapons, and to give their full support for the conference. See www.facebook.com/pnndglobal for links to some of these parliamentary questions and motions.

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