In March 2010 we will celebrate the 60th anniversary of the historic “Stockholm Appeal,” which recalled the criminal character of nuclear weapons and declared that whoever first used such weapons would be tried for crimes against humanity;

Hundreds of millions of signatures gathered throughout the world in support of this Appeal ensured that such weapons were not used;

But great powers, while wanting to retain their weapons exclusively, did not cease to produce and improve on them.  The mere existence of stockpiles, testing and exercises constitutes a permanent and terrible danger;

The so-called “war on terror” provides even less justification, since it is obvious that terrorism cannot be combatted with weapons of mass destruction;

The future and security of the world will not be secured by military means but by ambitious programmes of economic, social and cultural development;

This General Assembly of the International Association of Democratic Lawyers, gathered together in Vietnam from all corners of the Globe,

Recalling Vietnam’s suffering through two terrible wars, firstly from the French colonial power and then from the United States and that its people, despite their final victory, still suffer terrible consequences;

Calls for the widest and strongest movement of all peoples to demand an immediate cessation of production of weapons of mass destruction of all kinds as well as of all new weapons and tactics of war of which civilian populations are the first casualties;

Demands the destruction all stockpiled weapons of mass destruction;

Insists on the redistribution towards the needs of sustainable human development of all wealth currently squandered on military uses, which serves only to benefit merchants of death and which can only lead to the ultimate destruction of mankind.

The IADL General Assembly at the 17th Congress held in Hanoi 6-10 June 2009

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