IPB Call to Action – On the First Anniversary of the Russian Invasion of Ukraine: Let’s Show That There Are Peaceful Alternatives to War

The International Peace Bureau calls on our members worldwide to take action during 24-26 February 2023 in support of peace in Ukraine. The war, which will mark its first anniversary on 24.02.2023, has already cost more than two hundred thousand lives[1] – by conservative estimates – forced millions to flee their homes[2], caused widespread destruction of Ukrainian cities, and strained already fragile supply chains that have made life more difficult for people the world over.

We know that this war is unsustainable – and, worse still, risks escalation that threatens the life and livelihood of people around the world. The nuclear rhetoric of Russia in particular is irresponsible and demonstrates the fragility of this moment. Moreover, the war’s direct and indirect impact on the climate impedes the urgent need for a green transition[3].

There is no easy solution to the war in Ukraine, but the current track we are on is unsustainable. Through global demonstrations for peace, we seek to pressure the two sides to establish a ceasefire and to take steps toward negotiations for long-term peace.

Our calls for peace are not limited to Ukraine – for all conflicts in the world, we implore governments to refuse the logic of confrontation and war, to oppose the nuclear peril, and to commit themselves to disarmament by signing the Nuclear Weapons Ban Treaty. We demand that governments and states act in favor of diplomacy, negotiation, conflict prevention, and the establishment of common security systems[4].

We call for your support and your voices for peace. Please consider joining an existing event during this weekend of action, or planning your own. Together we are stronger, and can show the world that there are alternatives to war and militarization. 

Further resources:


[1] https://www.theguardian.com/world/2022/nov/10/us-estimates-200000-military-casualties-all-sides-ukraine-war

[2] https://cream-migration.org/ukraine-detail.htm?article=3573#:~:text=The%20UNHCR%20records%207%2C977%2C980%20refugees,for%20temporary%20protection%20in%20Europe

[3] https://www.sgr.org.uk/publications/estimating-military-s-global-greenhouse-gas-emissions

[4] https://commonsecurity.org/


You can download the PDF version of this official statement here:

➡️ Interact with us on social media especially to learn about our latest actions and activities: FacebookTwitterInstagram, and Youtube.

➡️ Our office is open to reply to any doubts regarding the documents that were above presented. To get in touch with us, e-mail us at info@ipb-office.berlin.

 90 Seconds to Midnight: A Wake-Up Call for Peace? 

Official Statement – 25/01/2023

On 24 January 2023, The Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists officially announced that the Doomsday Clock moved to 90 seconds to midnight – the closest the count has been to global apocalypse in its 78 years of existence, underlining the grim state of the world in 2023. 

This report is a wake-up call to the world; we cannot continue on the path that we have been going. The International Peace Bureau and our global network once again call on all parties involved in the war in Ukraine – including those indirectly involved through weapons transfers and other support – to push for an immediate ceasefire and take good-faith efforts to return to the negotiating table, in order to avoid the unprecedented threats that the war poses for the future of all life on our planet.

The Bulletin references the dangers of escalation in the war in Ukraine – where both parties are entrenched in their positions and Russia has threatened the use of nuclear weapons – alongside the weaponization of nuclear plants, the lack of cooperation on climate change, and the erosion of international norms.

While the war in Ukraine may be the most immediate existential threat we face, the end of the war itself is not enough to push us back from the brink. We urgently need Common Security, including a new peace architecture in Europe to avoid future conflicts.  Furthermore, we need global cooperation to eliminate nuclear weapons through the framework of the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons (TPNW) and the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT). New agreements between nuclear weapons states on reductions of such weapons, an end to their modernization and the nuclear sharing between the US and European countries, and the expansion of Nuclear Weapons Free Zones (NWFZ) could be a starting point toward their elimination.

Importantly, the “Joint Statement of the Leaders of the Five Nuclear-Weapon States” just over a year ago emphasized that a nuclear war can never be won.

Finally, we need urgent global cooperation to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and transition to clean energy; we need to cease the alarming use of new militarized like drones and artificial intelligence; and we need global justice, standing together against colonialism, militarism, inequality, and exploitation, to avoid the conflicts of tomorrow. A negation of militarism and a reduction of military spending – which globally amounts to more than 2 trillion US dollars –  in favour of social spending can ensure that we avoid moving any closer to global catastrophe.

The International Peace Bureau will continue to work with our network and partners to push us back from the brink and create a brighter, peaceful future.


You can download the PDF version of this official statement here:

➡️ Interact with us on social media especially to learn about our latest actions and activities: Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Youtube.

➡️ Our office is open to reply to any doubts regarding the documents that were above presented. To get in touch with us, e-mail us at info@ipb-office.berlin.

Official Documents – General Assembly 2022

From the 14th to the 16th of October 2022 in the city of Ghent (Belgium), the International Peace Bureau (IPB) held its General Assembly. In our triennial meeting, we gathered many of our Board and Council members to discuss the past, present, and future of the organization’s plans and actions. A new Board and Council were elected and we even had the opportunity to award Mr. Hiroshi “Taka” Takakusaki his Seán MacBride Prize (watch the ceremony here).

As the discussions held in our General Assembly and Council meetings are public, we now come to present the documents that were drafted and produced throughout the three days of the event. They represent IPB’s current character and serve to establish and present our organization’s focus and plans.


Continue reading “Official Documents – General Assembly 2022”

dED appeal to UK Universities – End your Partnerships with the Global Arms Trade and Instead Champion Peace!

Demilitarize Education is working to end the militarization of universities and is building the world’s biggest database of UK universities’ investments and partnerships with the global arms trade. Together in solidarity, we can work to see a world where universities champion peace, not war.

So far, dED has uncovered £619,686,663.57 worth of investments, research funding, and consultancy between arms trade companies and universities – and we’re just getting started! 

We’re reaching out to you to ask for help in signing and sharing our petition, as we build on the national movement to demilitarize our education.

These arms companies – including the likes of BAE Systems, Raytheon, Rolls Royce, and MBDA – involve themselves in universities for research and development, recruitment, and PR purposes. The universities then turn a profit from arms-trade research and investment income. 

But all the while these companies’ activities contribute to enormous carbon emissions, destabilize global relations, and facilitate war crimes by morally bankrupt regimes. That’s why we’re calling on universities to sever their ties to the global war machine, and invest in peace – not war! 

If you are interested in giving your voice to this campaign to demilitarize education, please support dED with the following: 

➡️ Check out their petitions: https://actionstorm.org/petitions/demilitarise-education/

➡️ Visit their website: https://ded1.co/

You can also follow them on Instagram, Facebook, Youtube and Twitter!

The Dismal State of Nuclear Disarmament

Viewpoint by Jacqueline Cabasso

The writer is the Executive Director of the Western States Legal Foundation.

OAKLAND, California (IDN) — The year 2022 has been a nightmare for nuclear disarmament. The year started out with a mildly reassuring Joint Statement by the five original nuclear-armed states, issued on January 3, 2022, declaring:

“The People’s Republic of China, the French Republic, the Russian Federation, the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, and the United States of America consider the avoidance of war between Nuclear-Weapon States and the reduction of strategic risks as our foremost responsibilities. We affirm that a nuclear war cannot be won and must never be fought.”

But less than two months later Russia launched a brutal war of aggression on Ukraine, accompanied by a series of veiled and no-so-veiled nuclear threats, raising concerns about the dangers of nuclear war to their highest level since the darkest days of the Cold War. And prospects for progress on nuclear disarmament went down from there.

The January 3 Joint Statement also avowed: “We remain committed to our Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) obligations, including our Article VI obligation ‘to pursue negotiations in good faith on effective measures relating to cessation of the nuclear arms race at an early date and to nuclear disarmament…’.”

However, more than 50 years after the NPT entered into force, their behavior points in the opposite direction. All of the nuclear-armed states, including the four outside the NPT (India, Israel, Pakistan, and North Korea) are engaged in costly programs to qualitatively upgrade and in some cases quantitatively increase their nuclear arsenals.

The 10th NPT Review Conference, which took place in August, was an abject failure, not because it couldn’t agree on a final outcome document, but because the nuclear-armed states haven’t made good on their fundamental nuclear disarmament obligation under Article VI of the Treaty, nor on the promises and commitments to action items that would lead to nuclear disarmament they agreed to in connection with the indefinite extension of the Treaty in 1995 and in the 2000 and 2010 final documents.

Despite the reassuring-sounding words in the Joint Statement, “We intend to continue seeking bilateral and multilateral diplomatic approaches to avoid military confrontations, strengthen stability and predictability, increase mutual understanding and confidence, and prevent an arms race that would benefit none and endanger all,” the reality is that a new nuclear arms race is already underway—compounded by offensive cyber capabilities, artificial intelligence, developing hypersonic capacities, a return to intermediate-range delivery systems, and the production of delivery systems capable of carrying either conventional or nuclear payloads.

In September and October, while our attention was focused on the U.S. midterm election results and Russia’s continuing nuclear threats in Ukraine, alarming developments were taking place on the Korean peninsula, where North Korea conducted a flurry of missile tests.

According to North Korea’s state news agency, these tests simulated showering South Korea with tactical nuclear weapons, as a warning in response to large-scale navy drills by South Korean and U.S. forces.

As the year wore on, negotiations on reviving the Iran nuclear deal stalled. And as Iran increased its uranium enrichment, the foreign minister of Saudi Arabia declared, “If Iran gets an operational nuclear weapon, all bets are off.”

Against this volatile backdrop, ten months into the Russian war in Ukraine, the Biden administration released the unclassified version of its Nuclear Posture Review (NPR), which doubles down on the centrality of nuclear deterrence—the threatened use of nuclear weapons—in U.S. national security policy.

The NPR could be read as pouring gas on the fire, naming Russia and China as strategic competitors and potential adversaries, and identifying North Korea and Iran as lesser potential threats. While giving lip service to “a renewed emphasis on arms control”, it declares, “For the foreseeable future, nuclear weapons will continue to provide unique deterrence effects that no other element of U.S. military power can replace. …” To this end, “The United States is committed to modernizing its nuclear forces, nuclear command, control, and communications (NC3) system, and production and support infrastructure. …”

This commitment is fully funded in the obscene $858 Billion National Defense Authorization Act passed by the Senate on December 15, which includes $50 Billion for nuclear weapons – more than was requested in the NPR.

The current state of nuclear disarmament affairs might be exemplified by the public unveiling of the B-21 Raider on December 3, with great fanfare, at contractor Northrup Grumman’s California headquarters. The B-21, a “sixth generation” aircraft, is the first new strategic bomber in more than three decades, designed to deliver both nuclear and conventional munitions.

It deploys the latest stealth technology and has global reach. Earlier plans included an unmanned option. The B-21 will replace the B-1B and B-2A bombers, and the number of strategic bomber bases in the U.S. that can store nuclear weapons will be increased from two at present to five by the mid-2030s. And so, it goes.

The Doomsday clock is ticking. By doubling down on the concept of national security through military might, at any cost, the governments of the nuclear-armed states and their allies are putting humanity on the road to Armageddon.

People everywhere, together, need to rise up non-violently and demand the implementation of a different concept of security, one based on cooperation among governments to make meeting human needs and protecting the environment their highest priority.

[IDN-InDepthNews – 25 December 2022]


This article was reproduced from IDN-InDepthNews with their authorization: https://www.indepthnews.net/

IDN is the flagship agency of the Non-profit International Press Syndicate.

This article was produced as a part of the joint media project between The Non-profit International Press Syndicate Group and Soka Gakkai International in Consultative Status with ECOSOC on 25 December 2022.

We believe in the free flow of information. Republish our articles for free, online or in print, under Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International, except for articles that are republished with permission.

Peace Is Possible, If We Want It

Ahead of the 70th Anniversary of the Korean War Armistice in 2023

Written by Sooyoung Hwang: Manager, Center for Peace and Disarmament, PSPD Secretary General, Korea Peace Appeal Campaign

Not long ago, there was an accident in which a South Korean missile fell into a military unit in Gangneung, a city in the east of South Korea. The missile fired by the South Korean military in response to North Korea’s ballistic missile launch was mistakenly dropped during an abnormal flight. The explosion and fire left residents in a state of anxiety all night. As North Korea’s missile crossed the South Korea’s NLL(Northern Limit Line) and fell into the open sea, an air raid warning was issued for the first time on Ulleungdo, a small island in the east sea. Many military experts said the missile was likely a “fault.” Residents living in Gunsan, where USFK air base is located, continuously say, “It’s too loud to live here.” Because a large-scale ROK-US combined air force exercise ‘Vigilant Storm’ was conducted last november. It was a military exercise mobilizing 250 aircrafts including F-35A fighter jets of South Korean army and USFK, and F-35B fighter jets of USFJ to strike hundreds of strategic locations in North Korea simultaneously. 

Year 2022, Crisis on the Korean Peninsula

The crisis on the Korean Peninsula is so serious enough to cause armed conflicts at any time. Everyone is worried that there will be an accidental armed conflict when inter-Korean dialogue has been halted. One of the largest military drills, the ROK-US combined military exercise, is being conducted frequently in the small peninsula. These exercises involve utilizing both nuclear and non-nuclear forces. North Korea’s response to South Korea and US military action is also getting tougher. North Korea has pushed ahead with the most missile tests ever this year, including ICBMs.

Even more dangerous is the fact that South Korea, the US, and North Korea are announcing and practicing a ‘preemptive strike’ strategy against their opponents. South Korea and the US are practicing operational plans, including preemptive strikes and leadership beheading, and are frequently deploying fighter jets capable of dropping nuclear weapons on the Korean Peninsula under the name of ‘extended deterrence.’ In response, North Korea has also announced the Law on the DPRK’s Nuclear Forces Policy, that said it could preemptively use nuclear weapons if an attack is deemed imminent or if the leadership is threatened. The vicious cycle of arms race is repeating.

It is contradictory for both South Korea, North Korea, and the US to be so preoccupied with war exercises that they want no war to break out. South Korea Yoon Suk-yeol administration’s policy toward North Korea is based on an old idea that “we will make economic compensation if North Korea gives up its nuclear weapons.” It is also strengthening its aggressive military posture, insisting on ‘peace through strength.’ Beyond the ROK-US military alliance, the ROK-US-Japan military cooperation is being promoted at a rapid pace, and cooperation with NATO is also being strengthened. It is hard to find an independent strategy and realistic solution for peace in the current administration. As a result, South Korean government has not had any significant contact or dialogue with North Korea so far.

In 2018, the Korean Peninsula showed hope for peace to the world. But now, military tensions are rising without an exit. Since North Korea announced a moratorium on nuclear and ICBM tests in 2018, South Korea and the US have not taken appropriate countermeasures to improve hostile relations and resolve security threats felt by North Korea. This is one of the reasons for the loss of momentum in negotiations, and why North Korea cannot be blamed solely for the current situation.

Northeast Asia, the Front Line of the US-China Conflict

Recently, a series of diplomatic events such as the US-China summit, the G20 summit, the ROK-US-Japan summit were held. But it is still difficult to find peace, cooperation, or a bright future. It is a good thing that the leaders of the US and China announced that there would be no ‘New Cold War’ and decided to resume climate change negotiations. But it’s not enough. The world’s blocization and militarism are getting worse day by day. In particular, the strategic competition between the world’s top military expenditure (US) and second (China) is taking place in all areas, and is expected to continue to be.

As the confrontation between the US and China intensifies, conflicts and tensions are occurring throughout Northeast Asia, including the Korean Peninsula, the East China Sea, the South China Sea, and Taiwan. Any accidental armed conflict in these areas would have disastrous consequences. The confrontation between the ROK-US-Japan and the DPRK-China-Russia are gradually increasing around the Korean Peninsula. The Korean Peninsula, which had not escaped the Cold War structure even during the post-Cold War period, is now in the midst of an unpredictable vortex called the ‘New Cold War.’

Our proposal, Peace-First Approach

We do not have much time. From now on, we cannot guarantee that even the unstable cease-fire on the Korean peninsula that has lasted for the past 70 years will remain in place. We must urge each government and the international community to act as follows to ensure a peaceful resolution of the conflict on the Korean Peninsula and to prevent armed conflicts in Northeast Asia.

First, the countries concerned must immediately stop all military action that intensifies military tensions on the Korean Peninsula. They must recognize that armed protests only intensify the vicious circle and can never be a solution. In particular, South Korea and the US need to take preemptive measures to reduce threats, such as suspending combined military exercises. It is urgent to restore trust and create conditions for the dialogue to resume. We need to find extraordinary ways, such as appointment of special envoys to North Korea. The US has the strongest military power in the world, and South Korea spends more than 1.5 times the total GDP of North Korea on military spending alone. South Korea and the US, which have an overwhelming advantage in economic and military power over North Korea, should act first. If anyone doesn’t change, we can’t expect change.

Second, it is necessary to reassess the purpose and effectiveness of the UN Security Council sanctions on the DPRK. The policy to make North Korea give up its nuclear weapons through sanctions and military pressure has failed for the past two decades. As a result, we all witnessed that North Korea’s nuclear capability has grown over time. We should all remember that North Korea’s nuclear and ICBM tests were suspended, at least while talks and negotiations were underway. The international community cannot solve problems simply by demonizing the DPRK and imposing sanctions and pressure. UN Security Council resolutions on the DPRK emphasize not only sanctions but also peaceful and comprehensive solutions through dialogue. Comprehensive sanctions against North Korea have been ineffective in resolving the nuclear conflict, but only have worsened the humanitarian situation of North Koreans. Sanctions are not an end but a means. Sanctions on North Korea should be eased to improve the humanitarian situation and promote inter-Korean cooperation and peace negotiations.

Third, the fundamental way to solve the conflict on the Korean Peninsula is to resolve the hostile relations. Complete denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula is impossible unless the unstable ceasefire is ended, hostile relations are converted into general diplomatic relations, mutual trust is established, and military threats are resolved. Yet, this will become more and more impossible as time goes by. Peace negotiations should begin, dealing comprehensively and effectively with the conclusion of peace agreements, improvement of the DPRK-US and the DPRK-Japan relations, and denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula. And denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula cannot be achieved solely by the ‘CVID of North Korea.’ The policy of relying on nuclear weapons including the US nuclear umbrella, upon which South Korea and Japan depend, must also end. These steps would create the conditions for establishing a nuclear-weapon-free zone in Northeast Asia and all states in the region joining the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons (TPNW). This is the way to protect the safety of all residents of the Korean Peninsula and East Asia.

Fourth, international efforts are needed to prevent armed conflicts in Northeast Asia and disarmament. Tensions are rising throughout Northeast Asia, and some regions are at high risk of leading to armed conflict. We need to resolve conflicts peacefully through dialogue and preventive diplomacy. Especially, regular dialogue and mechanisms should be created to control the deepening arms race between the US and China, including modernizing nuclear weapons, missile defense, autonomous weapon systems, militarizing space, and so on. Northeast Asia is an area where regional approaches have not developed and there is no regional security cooperation system. It should be noted that national security is deeply interdependent with other nations. As an alternative to resolving the deepening bilateral conflict, efforts are needed for regional security cooperation and dialogue. In addition, cooperation on the common goal of combating climate change must also continue regardless of the political and military situation. Because there is no peace without climate justice, and there is no climate justice without peace.

One Voice to End the Korean War, Korea Peace Appeal Campaign 

South Korea’s nationwide civil society organizations, seven major religious orders, and international organizations have been conducting the global signature campaign of the Korea Peace Appeal calling for an end to the Korean War and peace agreement since 2020. It is to end the vicious cycle of arms race on the Korean Peninsula, create a world without nuclear weapons and establish peace through dialogue and cooperation.

Year 2023 marks the 70th anniversary of the Korean War Armistice Agreement. Next year, Korea Peace Appeal Campaign plans to extend our campaign in various ways. Ahead of the signing date of the Armistice Agreement on July 27, the Global Action for Korea Peace in 100 different cities around the world, large scale rallies and marches in Seoul, and international conferences will be held in July. Detailed ways to participate will be updated to everyone next year. I hope that you and peace folks around the world will join with us to bring peace on the Korean Peninsula. 

The world we are facing now may not be the ‘Post War’ but the ‘Pre War’ era. The word ‘war’ feels closer than ever. We must continue to call for peace, disarmament, and cooperation against militarism and blocization. The higher the risk of war and armed conflict, the more people will want peace. The role of the peace movement is to connect and amplify the voices of such people as one, and to tell the world that “peace is possible.”

For the 70th anniversary of the armistice of the Korean War, let’s go together for peace on the Korean Peninsula and Northeast Asia, and for world peace.

Sign the Korea Peace Appeal: https://endthekoreanwar.net

Alexander Kmentt receives the Seán MacBride Award: Vienna, Austria

On Saturday, 2 December from 7-9 pm, the International Peace Bureau awarded Alexander Kmentt with the Seán MacBride Peace Prize. The ceremony was held at the Diplomatic Academy in Vienna, Austria. Kmentt officially received the award in 2021, but the pandemic delayed the ceremony. We were happy to honor Alexander Kmentt in person for his dedication to disarmament and the elimination of nuclear weapons. 

Alexander Kmentt is the Ambassador and Director of the Department of Disarmament, Arms-Control and Non-Proliferation Department of the Austrian Foreign Ministry. In his acceptance speech, Kmentt discussed the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons and the passionate activists and diplomats who made such a treaty possible, as well as the international role that Austria can play in terms of disarmament. Kmentt noted that “the risks of nuclear conflict [are] higher than in decades… [we] must realize with urgency that the nuclear weapons issue is back as an existential threat to the survival of humanity.” 

Sean Conner, Executive Director of IPB, presenting the award to Alexander Kmentt

Featured speakers included Angela Kane (Former United Nations High Representative for Disarmament Affairs), Emil Brix (Director of the Diplomatic Academy of Vienna), Rosa Logar (WILPF Austria – Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom), Elayne Whyte Gómez, (Costa Rican diplomat and Permanent Representative of Costa Rica to the United Nations in Geneva [2014-2020]), Beatrice Fihn (Executive Director of ICAN), Sean Conner (Executive Director of IPB) and Reiner Braun (outgoing Executive Director of IPB). Nadja Stiegler and Maria Kasznia from DuoArte enchanted the room with several musical numbers. 

Watch the award ceremony here:

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