19 April 2006: for immediate release
Opposition to a replacement for Trident, Britain’s nuclear weapons system, continues to grow nationwide. Over 100 MPs from across parliament have now signed Early Day Motion 1197, which calls for a debate and deciding vote in Parliament on whether to replace Trident. 110 MPs have signed the EDM, which was proposed by Michael Meacher MP. Of the 110 signatories, 84 are Labour. EDM 1197 demands more than the “fullest possible debate” promised by Tony Blair last February; it also calls for the government to “produce a Green Paper on Trident replacement that considers all possible options, including non-replacement,” and states that the deciding vote should be made by Parliament.
Kate Hudson, Chair of the Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament, said, “It is very encouraging that such a great number of MPs support CND’s call for a debate and parliamentary vote on Trident replacement. Many MPs understand that decisions on previous nuclear weapons systems were made without any Parliamentary discussion. They realise that the majority of Britons oppose the government building a new generation of nuclear weapons and therefore feel a responsibility to fully debate and vote on the issue.”
Recent motions passed by major trade union organisations have also opposed the replacement of Trident or called for a Parliamentary vote on the issue. The National Union of Journalists passed a motion at the end of March opposing the replacement of Trident and calling for it to be decommissioned. At the beginning of April, the TUC Young Members’ Conference amended a statement on nuclear weapons and the Non-Proliferation Treaty to call on the TUC to demand a deciding vote for MPs and to build opposition to Trident replacement. More recently, the Scottish TUC unanimously passed a motion to oppose Trident replacement. Motions opposing Trident replacement will be tabled at upcoming UNISON and CWU conferences.
Notes to Editor:
1. For further information and interviews please contact Rick Wayman, CND’s Press & Communications Officer, on 0207 7002350 or 07968 420859
2. The Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament (CND) is one of Europe’s biggest single-issue peace campaigns, with over 32,000 members in the UK. CND campaigns for the abolition of all nuclear weapons everywhere.
3. The full text of EDM 1197 reads: “That this House believes there should be the fullest possible public debate on a decision to replace the Trident nuclear weapons system; notes that a successor to Trident could cost as much as £25 billion, therefore affecting significantly other public spending options; calls on the Government to produce a Green Paper on Trident replacement that considers all possible options, including non-replacement; and further calls on the Government not to conclude any agreements, or to engage in preparations to build a new generation of nuclear weapons, until after this debate and a deciding vote held in Parliament.”