INDIA: India could lead again for a nuclear-weapon-free world

A Press Release from Asia Press Office, Right Livelihood Award Foundation forwarded by the Asian Human Rights Commission (AHRC)

India has new opportunities to lead a global initiative for a nuclear-weapon-free world according to nuclear policy analyst Alyn Ware, a recipient of the Right Livelihood Award, often referred to as the “Alternative Nobel Prize.”

Mr. Ware is in Mumbai for the Right Livelihood Award’s Regional Conference of Laureates working in Asia and the Pacific (3-6 March 2015), and for additional meetings in India with parliamentarians, academics, university students, policy analysts, and the Indian government.

“Nearly 30 years ago Rajiv Gandhi proposed a plan for nuclear abolition to the United Nations General Assembly – but this plan was rejected by the West,” says Mr. Ware. “The new relationship forged between Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi and US President Barack Obama, along with India’s leadership of the Non-Aligned Movement, places India in a much better position to build bridges between nuclear-armed States and non-nuclear States. This could break the deadlock that has prevented multi-lateral negotiations for nuclear disarmament for the past 20 years.”

According to Mr. Ware, “President Obama made a pledge for a nuclear-weapon-free world in Prague in 2009, but has not been able to make much progress. Prime Minister Modi could help fulfil this pledge by renewing and elevating the Indian proposal for a ban on the use of nuclear weapons as the first step toward a nuclear-weapon-free world.”

“The world is becoming more aware of the increasing risks of nuclear weapons use, whether by terrorist organisation or by a State in one of the regional conflicts,” says Mr. Ware. “Nearly 160 governments – including India and the United States  – met in Vienna last December to consider the catastrophic humanitarian consequences of any use of nuclear weapons. This focus opens the door for a prohibition on the use of nuclear weapons as the first step to a nuclear-weapon-free world, as proposed by India.”

“Such a ban could be achieved through negotiations of a convention,” offers Mr Ware, “or by the UN Security Council affirming that the use of nuclear weapons would constitute a violation of international humanitarian law and a crime against humanity. This would be consistent with the affirmation by the International Court of Justice in 1996 that the threat or use of nuclear weapons would, in general, violate the international laws of warfare. The ICJ case was supported by India.”

“However, if the Security Council is not prepared to go this far, at least they could affirm that the nuclear targeting of cities would be a crime against humanity. This was proposed at the Vienna conference by a US think tank the Global Security Institute along with Mayors for Peace, a global network of 6000 cities. Mayors for Peace is led by the Mayor of Hiroshima and includes Delhi, Mumbai and 16 other Indian cities.”


Laureate Alyn Ware is the founder and coordinator of Parliamentarians for Nuclear Non-proliferation and Disarmament (PNND), a global cross-party network of parliamentarians from over 90 countries. For more on Alyn Ware visit

Mumbai Event:

From 3-6 March 2015, 20 Laureates of the Right Livelihood Award gather in Mumbai at the Centre for Livelihoods & Social Innovation, TISS, for the 1st conference of Asia-Pacific Laureates since the inception of the prestigious Award. On 4 March, Alyn Ware will participate in a round-table discussion on Peace & Conflict, hosted by the Centre for Study of Society & Secularism, Mumbai. Other participants will include Irfan Engineer, Sulak Sivaraksa, Swami Agnivesh, and Rajni Bakshi. Visit for more information.

Media Opportunities:

Right Livelihood Laureate Alyn Ware will be in India till 13 March 2015. For interviews, contact: or +41 788 912 156

Document Type : Forwarded Press Release
Document ID : AHRC-FPR-005-2015
Countries : India,
Issues : Democracy, Environmental protection,