Pax Christi supports joint call for end to Israel's WMD

 A national lobby of Parliament has been called tomorrow (13 July) from 2-7pm. The central message of the lobby is that Israel's weapons of mass destruction have been tolerated for far too long. The hypocrisy governing attitudes to Israel's possession of WMD must end, and real steps must be taken to ensure Israel complies with international treaties and UN resolutions. Speakers at a public meeting in Parliament on the afternoon of the lobby include Bruce Kent, Frank Barnaby, Mandy Turner, Mahmoud Hawari, Jeremy Corbyn MP, Glen Rangwala, Kate Hudson, Chair of the Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament and Betty Hunter, General Secretary of the Palestine Solidarity Campaign. Israel has hundreds of nuclear weapons as well as many other weapons of mass destruction. New delivery systems with ranges of over 4,800 km can threaten numerous countries, causing regional instability, and even greater ranges are planned. Israel ignores UN resolutions calling for a nuclear weapons free Middle East, and refuses to sign up to international treaties banning or controlling WMD. It will not acknowledge publicly that it has nuclear weapons and has not signed up to the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty. Israel now has a partnership agreement with NATO. The European Arms Trade is providing submarines and aircraft which could be used for delivery of WMD. This trade is also involved in oppressing the Palestinians and undermining their resistance to occupation. Kate Hudson, Chair of the Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament, said: "Israel's weapons of mass destruction have been tolerated for far too long. The hypocrisy governing attitudes to Israel's actions must end and real steps must be taken to ensure Israel complies with UN resolutions calling for a nuclear weapons free Middle East. This would contribute hugely to the possibility of peace in the Middle East. The US talks of the dangers of nuclear proliferation. The UK is also quick to join the US in condemning 'rogue states' for their possible nuclear ambition, in the case of Iraq, to go to war on the premise of non-existent WMD. Yet for the past 40 years the nuclear weapon states have been complicit in the 'nuclear ambiguity' of Israel. Israel is thought to have between 100-400 nuclear weapons. The country is also recognised as having a production capability for chemical and even biological weapons." Betty Hunter, General Secretary of Palestine Solidarity Campaign said: "The recklessly partisan approach of our government which allows Israel to act with impunity on the acquisition and development of nuclear weapons as well as on its other breaches of international law must be challenged. We urge people from all walks of life to join us in our lobby, to impress upon the British government that we demand effective action to curb nuclear proliferation and bring peace to the Middle East." The lobby is jointly organised by the Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament and the Palestine Solidarity Campaign and is supported by Al-Awda, Bertrand Russell Peace Foundation, Campaign Against Arms Trade, Campaign to Free Vanunu and for a Nuclear Free Middle East, Friends of Sabeel, Labour Action for Peace, Pax Christi, Stop the War Coalition, World Court Project.