progress report 2012 - International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear ...

progress report 2012 - International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear ...






ICAN’s goal is to outlaw and eradicate nuclear

weapons, via a comprehensive international treaty.

Our strategy is to generate a tide of irresistible

global public opinion: building on existing

opposition and encouraging new voices and ideas,

especially amongst the generation born since the

end of the Cold War.

This has been a highly successful year for ICAN Australia, as is

demonstrated by the achievements described in this report. We have

raised the profile of the campaign internationally and at home, involving

people from many walks of life, recruiting prominent Australians to help give

authority and immediacy to our message. We have engaged many young

Australians, providing tailored information and a range of exercises to help

them give voice to their concerns. We have continued to build strong links

with important organisations such as the Red Cross/Crescent societies and

helped refocus the discussion on human impacts.

One of our core projects has been to transform the debate from one based

on defence doctrines and geopolitics to one based on the catastrophic

effects of nuclear weapons on our health and our habitat. ICAN aims to put

the human consequences of any use of nuclear weapons at the top of the

agenda, in the minds of politicians and diplomats, as well as the public. Our

“kinship” with the International Physicians for the Prevention of Nuclear War

enables particular expertise in articulating the hopeless inadequacy of any

emergency response to the use of these weapons and the urgent need to

prevent their use once and for all.

A flourishing campaign provides new challenges almost every day, in

Australia and abroad, demanding flexibility, imagination and wit. Our

energetic and creative staff performs magnificently on a small budget across

a range of expanding projects; supported by a busy team of volunteers.

Our many partners continue to provide breadth and depth to this global

campaign, making it vibrant and effective. Similarly, the members of the

ICAN Australia board of management are an ongoing source of expertise

and inspiration. I thank all of these individuals and organisations for their

contributions. In particular, I wish to thank our many donors, and especially

acknowledge the generosity once again of the Dara Foundation, which has

enabled ICAN Australia to become a formidable creative force for change.

Ahead of us lies another busy year, with a major international governmental

conference on nuclear weapons in Oslo in 2013 at which ICAN will organise

and drive the civil society contributions. We will create an environment

where governments will feel the strength of public determination: ICAN will

continue to mobilise public opinion and make practical steps along the

road to total elimination. To turn the talk to the walk. To convert abstract

discussions into concrete achievements. To ban nukes forever.

ICAN campaigners hold a candle-light

vigil by the A-Bomb Dome in Hiroshima.


Chair, ICAN Australia

November 2012


As a 10-year-old boy, Yami Lester was covered by a

cloud of radioactive fallout from a British nuclear test

conducted at Emu Junction, South Australia, in 1953.

Credit: Jessie Boylan




It has been another big year for ICAN Australia. Our national campaign efforts have

focused on raising public awareness about the catastrophic consequences of any use

of nuclear weapons, and building Australian support for a global nuclear weapons ban.


In partnership with the cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, ICAN

Australia organised exhibitions in Melbourne and Adelaide to draw

public attention to the human toll of the atomic bombings in 1945.

More than 140,000 people were killed in Hiroshima and 74,000 in

Nagasaki. The physical and emotional scars persist to this day.

The exhibitions included artefacts from the atomic bombings,

such as burnt school uniforms worn at the time and melted bottles

and roof tiles. The accompanying panels described the effects

of the bombings and the continued existence of 19,000 nuclear

weapons. Former federal government minister Tom Uren AO, who

witnessed the Nagasaki bombing as a prisoner of war, spoke at the

Melbourne launch. Many school groups visited the exhibitions and

spoke via video-conference to survivors of the bombings.

Mihoko Sakamoto from the Hiroshima Peace

Culture Foundation views the exhibition.

“It was a very powerful exhibition. It

strengthened my resolve to support efforts for

the total abolition of nuclear weapons.”

Visitor to the exhibition in Melbourne


On Australia Day 2012, ICAN launched an appeal

to the Prime Minister to support efforts to ban

nuclear weapons. Signed by 800 recipients

of the Order of Australia, it calls for Australian

leadership and initiative in global efforts to free

the world from nuclear weapons.

Signatories include past prime ministers, defence

ministers, foreign ministers and chiefs of the

armed forces, as well as some of our nation’s

most celebrated artists, authors and sports stars.

The appeal led to the adoption of a parliamentary

resolution on nuclear non-proliferation and

disarmament introduced by the Prime Minister

and supported by the Opposition Leader.

Excerpt from the appeal:

We call upon the Australian government

to adopt a nuclear-weapon-free defence

posture and to join other nations in working

to achieve a comprehensive, verifiable

treaty to abolish nuclear weapons.

ICAN volunteer Lily Gardener puts up posters in

Melbourne advertising the Hiroshima exhibition.




ICAN Australia has created thousands of

“disarmed bombs” as part of its Bombs No More

art activity, which will be judged by a panel of

Nobel Peace Prize winners and featured at the

United Nations. This public engagement activity

involves people transforming a nuclear bomb

image into something peaceful. It has been

held in classrooms and the streets, as well as at

the popular Harvest music festival in Werribee,

Sydney and Brisbane.

Jessica, 8, disarms a nuclear bomb

by transforming it into a butterfly.


ICAN Australia hosted a youth action conference in Melbourne in

September 2011, where participants identified practical ways to

promote ICAN on university campuses. Many students from the

University of Melbourne and RMIT have subsequently volunteered

at the ICAN office in Melbourne, working on research projects and

helping with the day-to-day running of the campaign.

In 2011 ICAN revised and updated its activity book for primary

and secondary school students, Learn Peace. This resource is

designed to enhance students’ understanding of the nuclear

threat and allow them to contribute to the goal of total nuclear

disarmament. ICAN has also held workshops with teachers to

equip them to teach about nuclear disarmament in the classroom.

“Together, we have the power to decide

whether the nuclear era ends in a radioactive

holocaust or worldwide celebration.”

ICAN supporter Desmond Tutu

Australian Red Cross’ Dr Helen Durham

in Hiroshima for ICAN/IPPNW meetings.


ICAN Australia has worked cooperatively with

Australian Red Cross to highlight the catastrophic

humanitarian consequences of nuclear weapons

and their incompatibility with rules and principles

of international humanitarian law. We addressed

the 2011 Red Cross national conference, and

have contributed to Red Cross publications,

co‐hosted events and provided expert advice.


ICAN Australia has voiced strong concerns about the weapons

proliferation risks associated with the proposed sale of Australian

uranium to India. India is building up its nuclear arsenal and has

a poor non-proliferation record. International Atomic Energy

Agency safeguards are inadequate. Moreover, ICAN has obtained

independent legal advice that uranium sales to India would breach

Australia’s obligations under the South Pacific Nuclear Free Zone

Treaty, which requires full-scope safeguards to be implemented.



Children’s book author Junko

Morimoto on Hiroshima Day.


ICAN supported a concert by the Melbournebased

group Japanese for Peace to mark the

67th anniversaries of the atomic bombings of

Hiroshima and Nagasaki. The concert included

a performance by Hiroshima survivor Junko

Morimoto, who is a renowned author and artist.


Hans Kristensen Leading nuclear disarmament

expert Hans Kristensen, from the Federation of

American Scientists, visited Melbourne in August

2011 to highlight the continuing threat posed

by around 19,000 nuclear weapons worldwide.

ICAN Australia and Australian Red Cross

co‐hosted a public forum with Mr Kristensen and

former foreign minister Gareth Evans.

Steve Leeper ICAN Australia hosted Steve

Leeper, the chair of the Hiroshima Peace Culture

Museum, in October 2011. Mr Leeper is a driving

force behind the Mayors for Peace network,

which now includes more than 5,000 cities in 150

countries. ICAN organised two public meetings

while Mr Leeper was in Melbourne. More

recently, Mr Leeper has assisted with ICAN’s

Paper Crane Project.

Credit: Jon Clarke


In August 2012, ICAN Australia published a

booklet detailing the catastrophic effects of

nuclear weapons on our health, societies and the

environment. Topics covered include:


ICAN Australia’s Director Tim Wright

speaks to reporters in Melbourne.

ICAN featured prominently in the Australian media in 2011–12.

Opinion articles by ICAN experts appeared in The Australian,

The Age, the Canberra Times, the Daily Telegraph and various

online news sites. ICAN board members and visiting experts were

interviewed on ABC’s One on One, the 7.30 Report and several

other TV programs. Our Order of Australia appeal, divestment

work, legal advice on uranium sales to India, and Hiroshima

exhibition all attracted considerable media attention.

• The human toll of the Hiroshima and

Nagasaki atomic bombings

• The immediate effects of nuclear weapons –

blast, heat and radiation

• The global climatic and agricultural

consequences of a regional nuclear war

• The lack of any adequate national or

international response capacity

• The health and environmental legacy of

decades of nuclear testing

• The harm caused during the production of

nuclear weapons

• The diversion of public resources away from

meeting human needs

• The history of outlawing other categories of

particularly inhumane weapons

• The urgent need for a global treaty to outlaw

and eliminate nuclear weapons.



ICAN Australia continues to play a key role in the campaign’s global expansion

and coordination. With new staff employed in Europe and the Middle East, we are

strengthening our worldwide efforts to achieve a ban on nuclear weapons.


More than 100 campaigners from 30 countries took part in an ICAN

campaigners’ meeting in Hiroshima in August 2012. Participants

focused on the need to reframe the nuclear disarmament debate in

humanitarian terms, and developed practical ideas for generating a

groundswell of public support – globally, regionally and in Japan –

for a treaty banning nuclear weapons.

The meeting built on the outcomes of the previous ICAN campaign

meeting in Vienna, and provided strategic direction leading up

to the Oslo conference on the humanitarian consequences of

nuclear weapons planned for March 2013. ICAN Australia and the

Japanese NGO Peace Boat were co-organisers of the meeting.

ICAN campaigners organise

an action in Hiroshima.

“We fear that unless governments

and individuals do more to rid the

world of these horrible weapons,

another city might one day suffer

the same fate as our own.”

ICAN youth campaigners in Hiroshima

With the support of ICAN Australia, youth in

Hiroshima launch ICAN’s Paper Crane Project.


ICAN Australia is coordinating and funding a

project with youth campaigners from Hiroshima

to deliver 1,000 hand-folded paper cranes to the

president or prime minister of every UN member

state – a total of more than 190,000 paper

cranes. In return for the cranes, the students

are seeking a message of support for a treaty to

outlaw and eliminate nuclear weapons.

Paper cranes are a Japanese symbol for a

nuclear-weapon-free world. Campaigners in more

than 80 countries are helping us to deliver the

cranes. Some have had the opportunity to meet

with their head of state or government to convey

the need to ban nuclear weapons.




Nuclear weapons divestment report

Positions on a nuclear weapons ban

ICAN campaigner Dr Daniel

Bassey from Nigeria.

ICAN published the first global report on the

financing of nuclear weapons producers.

The 180-page study, an initiative of ICAN

Australia, identifies more than 300 financial

institutions around the world that invest

in companies heavily involved in the US,

British, French and Indian nuclear weapons

programs. The report outlines the legal,

humanitarian and environmental cases for

divesting from nuclear weapons companies.

ICAN Australia has updated its detailed

guide to government positions on a treaty

banning nuclear weapons, which examines

the official statements at the United Nations

of 194 countries. It shows that 146 support

negotiations on a ban. Only 26 are opposed

to the idea and 22 sit “on the fence”. The

whole of Latin America, the Caribbean and

Africa are in favour, along with most nations

in Asia, the Pacific and the Middle East.


UN Conference on Disarmament Issues

Matsumoto, July 2011 ICAN Australia’s Director

Tim Wright participated in this conference, which

brought together disarmament experts and

government officials from across the world.

Asahi Shimbun Symposium

Hiroshima, August 2011 ICAN Australia’s

Chair Tilman Ruff presented on the health and

environmental effects of nuclear weapons. ICAN

supporter Yoko Ono gave the keynote address.

ICAN Campaigners Meeting

Geneva, September 2011 This was ICAN’s first

international campaigners meeting. Many of the

participants were from Africa and the Middle

East. Three people from ICAN Australia took part.

ICAN Campaigners Meeting

Vienna, April 2012 This meeting included

participants from more than 30 countries. Four

were from Australia. It identified key opportunities

to advance a ban on nuclear weapons.

NPT Preparatory Committee

Vienna, May 2012 At this Non-Proliferation Treaty

meeting, Tilman Ruff and Tim Wright presented

on the humanitarian imperative to disarm and

civil society’s contribution to a global ban.

World Conference Against A & H Bombs

Nagasaki, August 2012 Tim Wright presented

at this conference, which involved more than

10,000 people. It was organised by the Japanese

NGO Gensuikyo, which is calling for a ban.

UN Global Forum on Disarmament Education

Nagasaki, August 2012 Tim Wright participated

in this forum, which highlighted the importance

of awareness-raising campaigns as a means for

promoting a nuclear-weapon-free world.

IPPNW World Congress

Hiroshima, August 2012 Several ICAN Australia

representatives took part in the 20th World

Congress of International Physicians for the

Prevention of Nuclear War.

ICAN Co-Chair Tilman Ruff

addresses governments in Vienna.


ICAN is now preparing for a major diplomatic

conference in Oslo in March 2013, which will

examine the immediate and long-term effects

of nuclear attacks and the impossibility of

administering proper humanitarian relief.

The Norwegian government has invited ICAN to

be the official civil society partner, responsible

for coordinating public engagement around

the conference. ICAN’s activities will include a

concert, forums, exhibitions and film screenings.

We will urge governments to use the conference

as a launch pad for negotiations on a treaty to

outlaw and eliminate nuclear weapons.


The International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons (ICAN) Australia is at the forefront

of global efforts to outlaw and eliminate nuclear weapons. With more than 60 diverse partner

organisations nationwide, we are working to raise public awareness about nuclear dangers

and put disarmament squarely on the Australian political agenda. Through our outreach and

education activities, we are highlighting the catastrophic humanitarian harm caused by nuclear

weapons and the feasibility – and urgency – of achieving a universal, comprehensive ban.

Special thanks

to our major

donors in 2012

Over $10,000 Over $1,000

Dara Foundation

Dr Jennifer Simons

Myer Foundation

Anne Udy

Allan Myers AO QC Prof Fred Mendelsohn AO

Dr Nell Muirden

John Wilson

ICAN Australia



Dr Bill Williams

A/Prof Tilman Ruff AM

Dr Sue Wareham OAM

Dr Peter Karamoskos

Prof Fred Mendelsohn AO

Dave Sweeney

Nic Maclellan

Catriona Standfield

Kazuyo Preston

Prof Richard Broinowski

Past Board Members:

Marie McInerney

Leigh Hubbard

Dr Mark Zirnsak

ICAN International



A/Prof Tilman Ruff AM – Australia

Akira Kawasaki – Japan

Dr Rebecca Johnson – United Kingdom

Ray Acheson – Canada

Arielle Denis – France

Beatrice Fihn – Sweden

Josefin Lind – Sweden

John Loretz – United States

Dr Robert Mtonga – Zambia

Thomas Nash – United Kingdom

Dr Andreas Nidecker – Switzerland

Susi Snyder – Netherlands

Tim Wright – Australia

Contact us

ICAN Australia

G3/60 Leicester St

Carlton VIC 3053

Phone +61 (0)3 9347 4795

Fax +61 (0)3 9347 4995




Tim Wright – Campaign Director

James Norman – Media/Communications

Dianne Street – Bookkeeping/Administration

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