22 September 2021

Gem Romuld, the director of the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons: “Important questions remain over construction of the submarines and the potential imposition of military nuclear reactors on Adelaide or other cities, making construction sites and host ports certain nuclear targets. Military nuclear reactors in Australia would present a clear nuclear weapons proliferation risk and become potential sites for nuclear accidents and radiological contamination long into the future. … We note that the PM has clearly stated that this move does not signal future consideration of nuclear weapons. But he must match this with action — Australia must sign and ratify the [Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons] now — to not do so leaves the door open for a future stealthy slide towards nuclear weapons. The best way that the PM can assure Australians, the region and the world that he is serious about rejecting nuclear weapons is to pick up a pen today and sign the nuclear weapon ban treaty.”

(ICAN was founded in Australia and won the Nobel Peace Prize in 2017 for its work promoting the UN Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons. The TPNW took effect in January, without Australia’s support.)