Green Party Statement on the 75th anniversary of the atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki

OTTAWA – On the 75th anniversary of the atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki the world still has a large arsenal of nuclear weapons. According to Hiroshima For Global Peace, the nuclear stockpiles of the U.S. and Russia constitute more than 90 per cent of the total 13,865 known weapons. When the United Nations adopted the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons in 2017, Canada was not one of the signatories. 

“Canada’s refusal to sign on to the UN Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons was deeply disappointing,” said Green parliamentary leader Elizabeth May (MP, Saanich-Gulf Islands).  “Doubtless, this was one of the reasons Canada did not win the vote for a seat on the UN Security Council in June. How can we purport to be a country of peacekeepers when we refuse to stand with the international community in calling for the elimination of nuclear weapons?

“As we mark 75 years since the nuclear bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, we must never forget the role our country played in the tragedy that occurred in those cities.”

In 1943, Canadian Prime Minister Mackenzie King hosted U.S. President Franklin D. Roosevelt and British Prime Minister Winston Churchill in Quebec City, where they signed the Quebec Agreement to jointly develop the atom bomb. 

“The Green Party of Canada is the only political party with a commitment to developing a culture of peace and non-violence, indeed it is one of the six core Green values,” said Green Party Interim Leader Jo-Ann Roberts. “In 2017, the City of Toronto committed to become a nuclear weapons free zone. This April, Toronto formally requested that the federal government sign the UN Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons. On this, the 75th anniversary of those horrific attacks, it would be fitting for Canada to do the right thing and sign the treaty.”

To mark the sombre anniversary of the dropping of the two atom bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki, the largest bell in the Peace Tower at the parliament buildings in Ottawa will ring 75 times on August 6 and August 9. The commemoration was organized by Elizabeth May and House  Speaker Anthony Rota.

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