UK Uranium Weapons Network

Campaigning for a ban on Depleted Uranium weapons

Update: Latest articles and reports, upcoming events and the UN General Assembly meeting

Apologies that we have not blogged in a while, it has been a busy time in the UWN office and we haven’t had chance to write it all up yet.

Here is a quick update on what we and our partner organisations have been up to and a few dates for your diaries:

Our latest article has been published by New Left Project. It gives a summary of the use of DU weapons, highlights the UK’s hypocrisy in using them and states why we believe precaution should be on the UN agenda this month:

Depleted Uranium: An unacceptable toxic legacy

We are continuing to seek legal advice regarding the publication of the Article 36 legal review and will update you when we know more.

In June we attended an excellent an exciting workshop run by the Toxic Remnants of War Project in Berlin. A report on this workshop can be found on the TRW site.

Today marks the beginning of the 2012 UN General Assembly First Committee meetings. The International Coalition to Ban DU Weapons hopes a precedent will be set in disarmament politics with a resolution calling for precaution to be taken with DU weapons.

Next week we hope to be working with MP’s and launching an EDM asking for the UK to support this resolution. The UK is one of only 4 states to consistently vote against depleted uranium UN resolutions. We will need your help to get more MP’s on board to sign this EDM and change the UK’s voting stance. Keep an eye on the CADU website for more details on this.

In even more exciting news, three reports regarding depleted uranium we released last week:

A report by IKV Pax Christi which analyses the precautionary measures adopted by militaries to reduce their own troops’ exposure to DU munitions and asks whether these could form the basis for civilian protection norms:

Hazard Aware: Lessons learned from military field manuals on depleted uranium and how to move forward for civilian protection norms.

A report by ICBUW which judges the acceptability of DU weapons by utilising the structure of common interpretations of the precautionary principle. In doing so it asks whether a precautionary approach should be applied to DU and whether its use could ever be compatible with precautionary values:

Precaution in Practice – challenging the acceptability of depleted uranium weapons

CADU released a report which provides a historical review of the methods that the UK government has used in seeking to maintain the public acceptability of DU munitions, having recognised very early on in their development that public opposition to the use of DU in conventional weapons would be significant:

Managing Acceptability: UK policy on depleted uranium

The CADU report will be formally launched in a public meeting on 25th October in Friends Meeting House London. We will be joined by Aneaka Kellay, CADU campaigner and report author, Andrew Feinstein, author of ‘The Shadow World’, Revd. Nicholas Mercer, former Army Senior Legal Advisor and Chris Cole, Drone Wars UK Co-ordinator.

There will be a 15 minute presentation from each of the speakers followed by a 45 minute panel discussion where you will get chance to pose questions to the speakers. I hope you can join us.

There is more information on our Facebook page.

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