Peace needs social justice

The peace movement must link peace with social justice, writer Susan George told the IPPNWi World Congress in Delhi today. Her address, opening the day's proceedings, highlighted the growing inequalities in the world, with the welathy contributing less and less to national budgets; environmental stress and climate change leading to volence and war; and water shortages also becoming a source of conflict. The solution, she told delegates, was to recognise that there cannot be peace without justice. Regulation was needed, including international taxation, to ensure welfare, social cohesion, and peace.

Also speaking at the Congress was Canada's Senator Douglas Roche, who described to abolition of nuclear weapons as being once again at the centre of international political discourse. Nuclear weapons have lost all credibility he said, and there is now a historical momentum for their abolition. On the role of India, he said he had never lost hope that India would again become nuclear free, pointing to recent statements by the President stating a commitment to nuclear disarmament.

In the same session, chaired by Australia's Tilman Ruff, the former Indian navy head Admiral Ramdass ponted to the huge costs of nuclear wepaons and nculear power. Inda's increasing defence budget was now 20% of the budget, with nuclear weapons the most costly item.