Green Party Co-leader Jonathan Bartley is set to speak at the annual conference of the London Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament (CND) in January.
This year’s conference takes the theme of ‘Trump’s finger on the nuclear button’, with speakers tackling issues such as global conflict, nuclear escalation and grassroots resistance to nuclear arms.
Since Donald Trump’s election as President of the US in 2016, anxieties over a nuclear escalation not seen since the Cold War have risen as the capricious head of state seems intent on turning the international system on its head.
Trump has threatened to unleash nuclear “fire and fury” on North Korea, announced his intention to withdraw the US from the historic Iran nuclear deal and confirmed that he would be withdrawing from the 1987 Intermediate-range Nuclear Forces treaty with Russia, which banned ground-launch nuclear missiles with ranges from 500 kilometres (km) to 5,500km.
Along with Bartley, speakers at this year’s London CND conference include Labour MP Catherine West, Palestinian Ambassador Husan Zumlot and Medea Benjamin from Code Pink USA, plus more to be announced.
Bartley will speak at a session titled, ‘Think global, act local’, which will seek to link the multiple international crises, from war and nuclear escalation to climate change, with local grassroots activism.
Speaking on Bartley’s appearance, London CND Chair Carol Turner said: “We’re really excited to announce Jonathan Bartley as a speaker at our conference. As the Green Party’s Co-leader, Jonathan has been a major voice speaking out against the renewal of the UK’s nuclear weapons system, and we’re looking forward to hearing his insights on building a better world from the grassroots.”
CND was launched in 1958 following growing public concern regarding nuclear proliferation after the dropping of the two nuclear bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki in Japan in 1945 and the UK’s decision to develop its own nuclear programme in 1948.
CND campaigns for unilateral disarmament from the UK, opposing the renewal of the UK’s Trident nuclear missile system, and a global nuclear weapons ban.
Nuclear disarmament is a key tenet of Green Party policy, and Green MP Caroline Lucas is currently one of CND’s vice-presidents.
The London CND conference takes place on 12 January 2019. You can register for free tickets on its Eventbrite page.