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WCC releases joint statement rejecting fully autonomous weapons

In conjunction with the International Day of Human Fraternity, the World Council of Churches, Pax Christi Northern California, and Soka Gakkai International issued a joint statement, entitled “A Plea for Preserving Our Shared Humanity,” that expresses concern over the insidious development of weapons systems that lack meaningful human control.

Joint Interfaith Statement on the Entry into Force of the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons

As the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons enters into force on 22 January, the World Council of Churches joined other global faith communities in welcoming the groundbreaking moment. A joint statement endorsed by 156 organizations celebrated the milestone and, at the same time, noted that there is urgent work yet to be done to ensure a nuclear weapons-free world.

Commission on International Affairs

Joint Interfaith Statement on the 75th Anniversary of the Atomic Bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki

As a wide coalition of faith-based communities from around the world, we have committed to speaking
with one voice that rejects the existential threat to humanity that nuclear weapons pose. We reaffirm that the presence of even one nuclear weapon violates the core principles of our different faith traditions and threatens the unimaginable destruction of everything we hold dear.

Ecumenical movement

Ecumenical group demands for Germany to support nuclear prohibition

A group of German ecumenical activists including former WCC general secretary Konrad Raiser has criticised the German government for its failure to support the United Nations treaty on the prohibition of nuclear weapons. “It has become clear to many people in recent months that nuclear weapons do not offer lasting security and protection, but remain a continuing threat to humanity and creation,” the ecumenical activists said in an appeal published in Berlin on 20 February, referring to the stand-off between the United States and North Korea.

Christian organizations in Palestine release open letter

At an International Peace Consultation on 20 June, the National Coalition of Christian Organizations in Palestine issued on open letter to the WCC and the ecumenical movement, stating, “There is still no justice in our land.” In today’s Palestine, discrimination and inequality, military occupation and systematic oppression are the rule, the letter states: “Today, we stand in front of an impasse and we have reached a deadlock. Despite all the promises, endless summits, UN resolutions, religious and lay leader’s callings – Palestinians are still yearning for their freedom and independence, and seeking justice and equality.”

Action now to stop killer robots in future? Governments inch towards “maybe”

Are steps needed now in case high-tech weapons of the future are designed to attack and kill on their own? Members of a United Nations treaty on inhumane weapons have decided an expert group will deliberate on the topic next year, and WCC has joined with civil society organizations and concerned governments for plans to ban such weapons.

Calls grow for nuclear weapons ban

Governments should capitalize on years of growing concern and negotiate a ban on nuclear weapons next year, the World Council of Churches (WCC) said in an inter-religious call at the United Nations on 12 October. Speaking on behalf of Christian, Buddhist and Muslim organizations, Dr Emily Welty urged delegates to “negotiate a legally-binding instrument prohibiting nuclear weapons”.  

Negotiate a nuclear weapons ban next year, says UN group with broad support

“Negotiate a legally-binding instrument to prohibit nuclear weapons”. Do it “in 2017”. Make sure the negotiations are “open to all states” and include civil society. These are key points in a much-disputed report adopted last week by a United Nations working group of more than 100 countries meeting in Geneva.

When to ban nuclear weapons is key issue at UN work group

When is the right time to ban a very bad thing? Nations have faced the question in banning slavery, torture, chemical weapons and more. Over one hundred governments and civil society organizations including the WCC are debating the question again at a United Nations working group on nuclear weapons. The forum meets three times in 2016.