Elimination of Nukes (Red Cross and Red Crescent declaration)

Working towards the elimination of nuclear weapons
Draft Resolution
&
Background document
Document prepared by
The International Committee of the Red Cross in consultation
with the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies
and National Societies
Geneva, October 2011
EN
CD/11/4.1
Original: English
For decisionCD/11/4.1 2
DRAFT RESOLUTION

Working towards the elimination of nuclear weapons
The Council of Delegates,
deeply concerned about the destructive power of nuclear weapons, the unspeakable human
suffering they cause, the difficulty of controlling their effects in space and time, the threat
they pose to the environment and to future generations and the risks of escalation they
create,
concerned also by the continued retention of tens of thousands of nuclear warheads, the
proliferation of such weapons and the constant risk that they could again be used,
disturbed by the serious implications of any use of nuclear weapons for humanitarian
assistance activities and food production over wide areas of the world,
believing that the existence of nuclear weapons raises profound questions about the extent
of suffering that humans are willing to inflict, or to permit, in warfare,
welcoming the renewed diplomatic efforts on nuclear disarmament, in particular the
commitments made by States at the 2009 United Nations Security Council Summit on
Nuclear Non-Proliferation and Nuclear Disarmament, the 2010 Review Conference of the
Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons and the Treaty Between the United
States of America and the Russian Federation on Measures for the Further Reduction and
Limitation of Strategic Offensive Arms,
welcoming also the commitments made by States at the highest levels in the above fora to
create the conditions for a world free of nuclear weapons through concrete actions in the
fields of nuclear non-proliferation and nuclear disarmament,
recalling the 1996 advisory opinion of the International Court of Justice, which confirmed that
the principles and rules of international humanitarian law apply to nuclear weapons and
concluded that the threat or use of such weapons would generally be contrary to the
principles and rules of international humanitarian law,
drawing upon the testimony of atomic bomb survivors, the experience of the Japan Red
Cross and ICRC in assisting the victims of the atomic bomb blasts in Hiroshima and
Nagasaki and the knowledge gained through the ongoing treatment of survivors by the
Japanese Red Cross Atomic Bomb Survivors Hospitals,
bearing in mind the resolutions on weapons of mass destruction in general and the abolition
of nuclear weapons in particular, adopted by the International Conferences of the Red Cross
and Red Crescent in 1948, 1952, 1957, 1965, 1969, 1977 and 1981; the Council of
Delegates in 2009; and the statements on nuclear weapons made by the President of the
International Committee of the Red Cross to the Geneva diplomatic corps in April 2010 and
by the President of the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies to
Nobel Laureates in Hiroshima in November 2010,CD/11/4.1 3
convinced that the Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement has an historic and important
role to play in efforts to create the conditions for a world without nuclear weapons,
1. emphasizes the incalculable human suffering that can be expected to result from any use
of nuclear weapons, the lack of any adequate humanitarian response capacity and the
absolute imperative to prevent such use,
2. finds it difficult to envisage how any use of nuclear weapons could be compatible with the
rules of international humanitarian law, in particular the rules of distinction, precaution and
proportionality,
3. appeals to all States:
– to ensure that nuclear weapons are never again used, regardless of their views on the
legality of such weapons,
– to pursue in good faith and conclude with urgency and determination negotiations to
prohibit the use of and completely eliminate nuclear weapons through a legally binding
international agreement, based on existing commitments and international obligations,
4. calls on all components of the Movement, in light of our common commitment to
humanitarian diplomacy:
– to engage, to the extent possible, in activities to raise awareness among the public,
scientists, health professionals and decision-makers of the catastrophic humanitarian
consequences of any use of nuclear weapons, the international humanitarian law
issues that arise from such use and the need for concrete actions leading to the
prohibition of use and elimination of such weapons,
– to engage, to the extent possible, in continuous dialogue with governments and other
relevant actors on the humanitarian and international humanitarian law issues
associated with nuclear weapons and to disseminate the Movement position outlined in
this resolution.

Resolution and Background Document:

Click to access CD11_Nuclear_Weapons_EN.pdf

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