International Meeting
2000 World Conference against A & H Bombs

Romesh Chandra
President of Honour
World Peace Council

No Foreign Military Bases! No to NATO and Military Pacts! Stop US Intervention and Aggression!

Common Action and Cooperation of Peace and Anti-Nuclear Organizations and All Other Non-Governmental Movements Working for a World without Nuclear Weapons, without War, Hunger and Poverty

Dear Delegates, Dear Friends and Colleagues,

Greetings from the World Peace Council to this great World Conference against A & H Bombs.

The World Peace Council is a mass movement of peoples, with member organizations in all continents in one hundred and fifty countries, which is observing this year the 50th anniversary of its foundation. From the day of its foundation, the Council has been dedicated to the cause of the prohibition of all nuclear weapons, and for peace, people's livelihood and justice for all humankind. This is the same goal for which stands the movement around the World Conference against A & H Bombs.

Okinawa's Call

I bring special greeting today from the Assembly of the World Peace Council held in May of this year in Athens, the capital of Greece.

I speak today, also as Chairperson of the NGO Special Committee on Disarmament and of the Special NGO Sub-committee on the South and against Racism.

Like all other delegates, who come to this conference in Hiroshima from outside Japan, we bring warm congratulations to the Japan Peace Committee and all other organizations in this country, who took part in the massive demonstrations held in Okinawa and in other parts of Japan before, during and after the G8 Summit.

The call of the peoples of the world to the nuclear weapon states and their partners in the Group of Eight is clear: destroy your stockpiles of nuclear weapons! Stop all manufacturing, sales and testing of new nuclear weapons! That is what we mean when we say "Never again Hiroshima! Never again Nagasaki!"

Let us repeat together the call of Okinawa and its human chain:

US Bases, US Troops out of Okinawa! Out of Japan! Yankee no! Okinawa yes!

No More Foreign Bases! No More Military Pacts!

US Missile Defense

There have been some dangerous new developments in the international situation since we met last year on the eve of the dawn of the 21st century.

Of the greatest significance has been the diabolical declaration of President Bill Clinton and the U.S. administration to launch a new "Star Wars" plan through the so-called "Missile Defense Shield." There is nothing "defensive" about this US "defense" initiative: it is a plan for aggression and nuclear war, it is a plan for first strikes.

Clinton says it is aimed against what he calls "rogue" states. Listen carefully, my brothers and sisters. When Washington talks of "rogue states" it is a question of the thief who shouts "catch the thief." Any state which refuses to fall on its knees and surrender to American hegemony is labeled by Clinton and company as a "rogue state" But the truth is: the real rogue state is the biggest nuclear power-the United States of America, the genocidal atom bomber of Hiroshima and Nagasaki.

The US "nuclear missile defense" plan is opposed by the peoples of the world and by all governments which are firmly opposed to American hegemony, domination, neo-colonialism and racism.

Strong statements condemning Clinton's nuclear missile defense plan have been made by several governments including those of China, Cuba, Vietnam, Russia. some members of the European Union and many developing countries.

Pentagon No! US Nuclear "Defense Plan" No!

NATO's new strategic plans continue to threaten all countries. The US-Japan Security Treaty and the Guidelines and secret plans threaten the Asian countries in particular. Nuclear weapons of all countries are a menace to the sovereignty and independence of all non-nuclear weapon states. We extend our solidarity to the peace and anti-nuclear weapon forces who are opposing their governments participation in military alliances and pacts! Solidarity is our watchword, common action our banner.

We declare our full solidarity with peoples of all countries, which are victims of United States and NATO aggression, blockades, embargos, military intervention and neo-colonial attacks. We call for peaceful settlements of all conflicts without imperialist interference. At this hour, cooperation and common action of all peace and anti-nuclear forces, all anti-imperialist movements and NGOs, are the only ways to reach our goal of a world without nuclear weapons, without war, without hunger and poverty, without environmental pollution.

We offer our cooperation to all the mass movements of workers and peasants, youth and students, women to join in common actions to reach our goals. We express our cooperation to the vast mass NGO networks of the unemployed, of peasants without land, networks for the cancellation of foreign debts of developing countries, networks against the power of transnational corporations.

We stand together with all movements working for nuclear weapon free zones, for the reduction of military budgets, for the prohibition of the use of depleted uranium, for the banning of chemical and biological weapons, for general and complete disarmament.

Nuclear Power: War Makers, Hunger Makers.

Let us face the facts:

Fact one: 30,000 nuclear weapons in the stockpiles of nuclear powers mean continuous and increasing danger of death and destruction for your people and my people, for your children and grandchildren and my children and grandchildren.

Fact two: nuclear tests mean the preparation of new nuclear weapons with greater killing power-greater power for the genocide makers.

Fact three: More than half of the world population lives on less than one dollar or two dollars a day. This again means death today by the million and new dangers of conflict and war.

Fact four: The number of the world's poor and hungry is growing every day, growing as we talk now.

Fact five: In the name of "humanitarian intervention" the U.S. and other NATO powers which go along with Washington, are carrying out aggression and interference against scores and scores of states, violating their sovereignty and independence. Every day new victims are added to the murder list of imperialism.

Fighting together for each and all causes of all peoples

We cannot win separately. We have talked enough of uniting our efforts. This year 2000 must begin to see concrete mass efforts towards working together against those who are acting so that the peoples are divided to enable the war makers to rule and destroy the world. I repeat: "we cannot win separately."

But we can and shall be victorious, fighting "together" in each country, in each continent and all over the world, for each of the best causes of each organization and movement, under the great common banners of the peace and anti-nuclear, anti-imperialist movements.

The struggle continues, my brothers and sisters! And the struggle shall bring our common victory! Let us bring our human chain around the war makers, the hunger makers!

Victory for you! Victory for all!
Never again Hiroshima! Never again Nagasaki!

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