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Cadmus  2012 

Re-examining the 1996 ICJ Advisory Opinion: Concerning the Legality of Nuclear Weapons

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The primary objections raised against total elimination of nuclear weapons are built around a few arguments mostly of non-technical nature.Nuclear weapons and the strategies for their use have resulted in the establishment of a vicious circle within which the international community is trapped.The argument that the world will be unsafe without nuclear weapons is only meant to further the narrow self-interest of the nuclear weapon states and their allies.The World Court’s far-reaching 1996 advisory opinion concluded that almost any use or threat of use of nuclear weapons would violate international humanitarian law and law applicable in armed conflict, undermining most claims of nuclear weapon states regarding the legitimacy of possession, use or threat of use of nuclear weapons. The next logical step would be an initiative for a nuclear convention banning the use and threat of use of nuclear weapons in Asia and the adjoining oceans. But as long as the dominant elites in society and the nation-state believe in the utility of nuclear weapons for national security or as the currency of power, abolition of nuclear weapons will remain a mirage.


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