Posted: 7th June 2021
Please find today’s press round up below. Thank you to all for their continued help and support.
A new report from ICAN has revealed the extent of spending on nuclear weapons last year, whilst campaigning in the Iranian presidential election continues.
New ICAN Report
A new report published by ICAN examines international spending on nuclear weapons in 2020. The National reports that the UK spend an estimated £8000 every minute on Trident in 2020. (Scottish CND is quoted in the piece.) The UK spent the fourth most on nuclear weapons, with the U.S, China and Russia ahead. ICAN points out that twelve companies which received contracts relating to nuclear weapons worth $27.7 billion also spent $117 million on lobbying politicians. The full report can be found here.
Iranian Presidential Election
Campaigning in the Iranian presidential election is well under way ahead of the June 18th poll. The Guardian reports that in a television debate at the weekend one candidate, Mohsen Rezaei, told another, former central banker Abdolnaser Hemmati, that he’d put the latter on trial for devaluing the currency and treason. The favourite remains Ebrahim Raisi, a perceived hardliner and current chief of the judiciary. The first debate focused on the economy, meaning the nuclear deal was not raised.
A large number of former world leaders and others have called for the upcoming G& summit to provide proper funding for international vaccination efforts, whilst a new report for Oxfam looks at the economic impact of climate inaction by the G7.
G7 Vaccination Strategy
More than two hundred former world leaders have signed a letter demanding saying the G7 should pay for the majority of the $66 billion is estimated to cost to make vaccines fully available across the world. The Guardian reports that the letter says that ‘support from the G7 and G20 that makes vaccines readily accessible to low and middle-income countries is not an act of charity, but rather is in every country’s strategic interest’. They want the G7 to pledge 67% of the funding needed for the UN programme, the Access to Covid-19 Tools Accelerator (ACT-A) at its Cornwall summit.
G7 Climate Change
The economic impact of climate change is likely to be twice as worse on the G7 countries as the Covid crisis according to new research, the Guardian reports.A new report by Oxfam and a Swiss insurance company says that $5 trillion dollars’ worth of GDP will be wiped out if global heating carries on at current estimations. The report points out that the UK in particular would benefit from hitting the Paris agreement targets, with a 2.4% annual shrinkage if those targets are met, versus a 6.5% shrinkage if the trajectory follows its current path.
The extent of the UK’s arms exports to China become clear, while local people in Oldham make their opposition to Elbit Arms clear.
UK Arms Trade with China
Declassified UK carries a piece by Mark Curtis examining the UK’s arms trade with China. In the past three years, the UK government has licensed the export of around £2.6 billion in military or ‘dual use’ goods to China, though the latter category has long come under criticism from campaigners for being overly broad. Among the equipment supplied by British companies to China was parts for military aircraft. Military communications equipment and technology for air defence systems was also sold to China. The UK has imposed some restrictions on the arms trade with China since the 1989 events in Tiananmen Square.
UK Arms Trade with Israel
A large demonstration took place in Oldham at the weekend, protesting the existence of an Elbit arms factory in the town, according to the Morning Star.The Elbit-Ferrari factory manufactures drones which are used in the repression of the Palestinians. Around 2,000 people attended the Oldham protest. This came as an Israeli cargo ship was forced to turn back at the U.S. port of Oakland after joint action by pro-Palestine protestors and the local International Longshore and Warehouse Union.
With best wishes,
Press and Communications Officer
Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament