Global Action to Prevent War - A Progress Report

 

Global Action to Prevent War (GAP), a major project of LCNP and its parent body, the International Association of Lawyers Against Nuclear Arms, is becoming a global coalition, with a newly formed international coordinating committee and a strong boost from the Hague Appeal for Peace.

GAP is a comprehensive program combining conflict prevention, peacekeeping, and disarmament measures in an integrated approach to reduce the scale and frequency of violent conflict, including genocide and other internal strife.  It seeks to create a war prevention regime in four phases over the first three to four decades of the 21st century, as more fully described in Bombs Away!, Fall 1998. The GAP document, now in its tenth revision, can be found at www.globalactionpw.org, or contact LCNP for a hard copy.

As an integrated program, GAP promotes a wide range of political and legal projects. For example: compulsory jurisdiction of states before the International Court of Justice, compulsory jurisdiction of individuals before the International Criminal Court; humanitarian intervention by appropriate UN standing forces; establishing a non-provocative or defensive security system; and training in non-violent conflict resolution" in educational environments throughout the globe. Among other things, GAP aims to create a global security environment more conducive to the elimination of nuclear, chemical, and biological weapons.  The importance of controlling and reducing "conventional" arms in this regard was most recently illustrated by the Russian military staff's announcement that during exercises held in July, Russia was required to use nuclear weapons to meet an overwhelming conventional force.

A coordinating committee has been organized involving prominent policy and political activists from the developing world such as Vandana Shiva, ecologist/feminist; Alejandro Bendana, Director, Center for International Studies, Managua; Jacklyn Cock, University of Witwatersrand, Johannesburg; and Walden Bello, Focus on the Global South, Bangkok and Manila. Mary Kaldor of the London School of Economics, Joseph Rotblat of Pugwash, John Burroughs of LCNP, Merav Datan of IPPNW, and Jonathan Schell of The Nation Institute are among the participants from the developed world.

At the Hague Appeal for Peace, GAP held two major sessions featuring Bendana, Cock, and Bello. Five other sessions included GAP founders Randall Forsberg, Director of the Institute of Defense & Disarmament Studies, Jonathan Dean, former US ambassador to Mutual Balanced Force Reduction negotiations and Senior Consultant to the Union of Concerned Scientists, and Saul Mendlovitz, LCNP Vice-President and Co-Director of World Order Model Projects. Four open meetings were held, where lively discussions ensued. GAP was adopted as a fundamental program of the continuing HAP process.

In the coming year, GAP has been asked to make presentations at the State of the World Forum; the Nobel Conference, the Future of Arms Control; the Seoul Conference on the New Millennium; and the Montreal Conference on World Civil Society. GAP will also assist in the organization of the citizens' millennium conference at the UN, spring 2000. GAP is actively seeking to find a number of states at the UN to submit the draft in an appropriate forum so that it will be discussed and acted upon in the next two or three years. Your comments are invited on the GAP document, whose next revision is scheduled for December 1999.

 

 

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