Media Release: PM must lead on nuclear disarmament at G7 Summit in Hiroshima

May 18, 2023 | News

As Prime Minister Anthony Albanese prepares to join G7 countries in Hiroshima this weekend as an invitee of the G7 Summit, Nobel Peace Prize recipient, ICAN, calls on Albanese to be a leader on issues of nuclear disarmament, rather than remaining complicit in their existence.

In a message directed at the PM, ICAN Australia Director, Gem Romuld, said that “Atomic bomb survivors in Hiroshima are appealing to all countries to join the UN Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons (TPNW). They don’t want platitudes, they want action. The best way for you, Prime Minister Albanese, to honour them, and ensure no one else ever suffers as they have, would be to join the treaty—as Labor has been promising to do.

All G7 nations either possess, host or support the use of nuclear weapons in their security doctrines. However, several of the invited countries have signed the TPNW, including Indonesia, the Cook Islands and Brazil, and will expect meaningful outcomes on nuclear disarmament from the Hiroshima summit.

Anthony Albanese proposed the resolution that commits Labor to join the TPNW at the 2018 National Labor Conference, and has pledged his personal support for the ban alongside 75% of all federal Labor parliamentarians.

In an appeal via letter to the Prime Minister earlier this month, the ICAN Australia Co-Chairs Dr Marianne Hanson and Dr Margaret Beavis wrote,

“Australia, as a non-nuclear nation and a proud signatory to the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty and the South Pacific Nuclear Free Zone, has a responsibility to lead efforts on the stigmatisation, prohibition and elimination of nuclear weapons, including where the nuclear-armed and nuclear-hosting states fail…

“Under your government, Australia has taken positive steps to engage with the TPNW, for which we commend you. However, we have yet to learn of concrete action to sign and then ratify the treaty. We urge Labor to take the opportunity to advance Australia’s position on this treaty when you visit Hiroshima.”