Nuclear weapons: Withdrawal, abolition and disarmament

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As member of a delegation from Mayors for Peace and further peace-promoting organizations, Mayor Thomas Hermann visited the Federal Foreign Office where he met with Antje Leendertse, the German Government’s Commissioner for Disarmament and Arms Control, to canvass for global nuclear disarmament.

Mayors for Peace delegation at the Federal Foreign Office

The talks in early November were focussed on the US Government’s current plans for modernizing nuclear weapons and on the lawsuit filed by the Marshall Islands with the International Court of Justice (ICJ). The delegation members called on the German Government to press for the withdrawal of the nuclear weapons stationed by the USA in German’s Eifel region and prevent the planned modernization, besides which the Federal Government should lend its support to the Marshall Islands’ lawsuit. The island state has filed a lawsuit with the ICJ against the nine nations which have nuclear weapons, namely the USA, Russia, France, Britain, China, India, Pakistan, Israel and North Korea. The Marshall Islands were used over decades by the Americans as a nuclear testing ground.

Commissioner Antje Leendertse emphasized the Federal Government’s persistent commitment. She underlined the importance of the work of civil society, paying tribute to the positive stimuli generated therefrom. As representative of Lower Saxony’s state capital Hannover and one of eight vice presidents of the Mayors for Peace organization, Mayor Thomas Hermann extended an invitation to Mrs Leendertse to attend a Mayors for Peace event in Hannover within the framework of the commemorations in 2015 of the atomic bombing of Hiroshima, affirming that “Mayors for Peace will be taking the 70th anniversary of that fateful event to loudly and clearly advocate nuclear disarmament”.