A group of Nobel Peace Prize winners want regional Australians to stand up and force the government to sign what they say is ‘our best chance at getting rid of the worst weapons’.
The International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons group, launched in Melbourne, were the first Australian recipients of a Nobel Peace Prize.
Australian director Gem Romuld said the prize was just the beginning of their work, with much more still to be done.
To inspire the masses and pressure the government into signing the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons ICAN members have picked up their bike, riding from Melbourne to Canberra to share their message.
“Many people don’t know about the treaty or why it is important, people just assume Australia has signed up to it – but they haven’t,” Ms Romuld said.
“The treaty is important because it’s the first one to comprehensively outlaw nuclear weapons.
“It’s a clear rejection by the majority of the world’s countries of nuclear weapons.
“Treaty signatories say it’s unacceptable to have nuclear weapons as a part of defence policy, because nuclear weapons make us all less safe – the world will be safer when there are fewer nuclear weapons, and ultimately when they’re abolished.”
The group will arrive in Canberra on September 20, the anniversary of the treaty being signed at the UN.
They have traveled through Benalla, Wangaratta, Beechworth and arrived in Albury-Wodonga on Sunday ahead of an event on Monday.
“Because most of our advocacy is in the city so far, we wanted to also tour through smaller cities and regional towns to share the Nobel Prize medal,” Ms Romuld said.
“We know it’s going to take a collective effort of many, many people of all walks of life to make sure the government signed the treaty. Part of doing this is to build support for our overarching goal to demand the government sign and ratify it.”
Ms Romuld said Monday’s 12.30pm event at the LibraryMuseum would discuss the treaty and the prize.
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