The most important development in nuclear disarmament since the Cold War ended 25 years ago is now under way. All governments, including our own, were invited to support a commitment by the government of Austria "to identify and pursue effective measures to fill the legal gap for the prohibition and elimination of nuclear weapons", and "to co-operate with all stakeholders to achieve this goal." By this week, 40 governments have already joined this call. They include all the 33 states of Latin America and the Caribbean. The rest are in Africa, Asia, Europe and the Pacific. More are joining. Yet as documents released this week under Freedom of Information confirm, the Australian government continues to categorically oppose banning the most destructive and indiscriminate of all weapons.
Australia faces a moment of truth – are we serious about nuclear disarmament, or will we continue to oppose a treaty banning nuclear weapons?