“Italia, ripensaci” (“Italy, think again”) Campaign writes to MPs: concrete steps are needed for nuclear disarmament

“Italia, ripensaci” (“Italy, think again”) Campaign writes to MPs: concrete steps are needed for nuclear disarmament

Three concrete proposals to Deputies and Senators by Senzatomica and the Italian Peace and Disarmament Network in support of the path towards the prohibition of nuclear weapons foreseen by the TPNW Treaty obtained thanks to the work of the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons (Nobel Peace Prize 2017).

“Italy, think again” – the mobilisation in support of the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons (TPNW) promoted by the Italian Network for Peace and Disarmament and the Senzatomica campaign – has written to all parliamentarians to urge concrete steps in favour of nuclear disarmament. At the centre of the requests are the adhesion to the ICAN Parliamentary Pledge, the presentation and discussion of a parliamentary document and the request to the Government that Italy participates as an observer State at the first Conference of the States Parties to the TPNW in Vienna.

There are currently more than 13.000 warheads worldwide, 2.000 of which are on high operational alert, i.e. ready for use. This evidence also prompts Italian civil society to work “together with the hibakusha – the survivors of Hiroshima and Nagasaki and all the people who suffered the consequences of the nuclear tests” to prevent the future use of these weapons by banning them “with the aim of their total dismantlement and the implementation of a system based on international verification and control instruments.

87% of Italians are in favour of Italy joining the TPNW and a remarkable 74% also want the US nuclear warheads currently present in Italy to be removed from our territory.

Members of the Italian Parliament have been asked to adhere to the Appeal addressed to parliamentarians around the world by the ICAN Campaign: during the XVII legislature, more than 240 elected members adhered to the ICAN Parliamentary Pledge; it is now time for Deputies and Senators of the XVIII legislature to make their voices heard. The next step will concern the presentation of a parliamentary document that takes up the Motion – the first by a Parliament of a NATO country – approved in the Chamber of Deputies in September 2017 and that already committed the Government to “continue to pursue the objective of a world free of nuclear weapons, through a progressive and inclusive approach to disarmament, […] considering in this context, […] the possibility of adhering to the legally binding treaty to ban nuclear weapons, leading to their total elimination”.

From the point of view of “Italy, think again”, all this should also translate into concrete and effective support for the request that the Italian government can participate as an “observer” (even though it has not yet signed or ratified the Treaty) at the first Conference of States Parties to the TPNW to be held in Vienna in March 2022. Recently, the new government of Norway, a NATO member state, has also confirmed its intention and willingness to take such a step. At the Vienna Conference there will also be space for civil society initiatives, as well as moments of confrontation with representatives of Parliaments and Local Authorities, including Italian ones (we must remember that hundreds of Municipalities and Provinces have approved documents and motions in support of the TPNW and of nuclear disarmament).

A widespread mobilization that will increase in a decisive way if many Deputies and Senators will support it through the adhesion to the ICAN Parliamentary Pledge and if the two branches of the Parliament will express themselves with Motions or Resolutions in favour of nuclear disarmament that express openness to the Italian participation to the TPNW path.