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London launch of "Protective Wall"of international law

On 19 January, London’s Mayors For Peace reception provided the venue for the launch of the city’s contribution to the “protective wall of international law” initiative. The wall project was started in Heidelberg, Germany, by young people who have together built a wall made up of small individually decorated blocks of plywood. Every brick represents one person and demonstrates in a highly visible way the reality of the struggle for global peace: that no nation can support the Charter of the United Nations without supporting the renunciation of violence enshrined within it. Similar walls are being constructed all around the world before being assembled in New York in April in time for the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty Review conference to be held in the city in May this year. It will then be transported to its final resting place in Hiroshima where its presence will form part of the events commemorating the 60th anniversary of the atomic bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki.

Mayors for Peace

The Mayors For Peace event took place at London’s City Hall and was attended by mayors from across the UK, MPs, faith leaders, peace activists and campaigners. Speakers at the event included veteran peace campaigner Bruce Kent and the1995 Nobel Peace Prize winner Professor Joseph Rotblat who, famously, was the first scientist to walk away from the Manhattan Project (the US programme to develop an atomic bomb). Unfortunately, the mayor of London – Ken Livingstone – was unable to attend the event due to illness.

Playing our part

Professor Rotblat made a poignant speech. He spoke of his sadness at the news of the recent tsunami disaster in Asia, but pointed out what many of us have been thinking: that the attention afforded it by the media and the general public could also be well directed to the numerous human-made catastrophes that we can all play a part in preventing.

Topics: Culture