The Military Build-Up in the Northern Areas
24 July 1989
The 24th Triennial Congress of the Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom, 14-25 July, 1989 in Sydney, Australia:
As we see positive and constructive steps towards disarmament in Central Europe, there is a high and increasing military activity in the Northern part of the Continent. Norway and the northern part of the Atlantic Ocean are important elements in the USA’s new maritime strategy since Norway is NATO’s eastern border with the USSR.
This is not only of regional importance for the Nordic countries. The Arctic Ocean constitutes a risk for potential confrontation between the superpowers, particularly as nuclear missiles are increasingly being deployed at sea rather than on land. In addition, this area is environmentally extremely vulnerable, making military activities particularly dangerous.
An international campaign aimed at NATO and the relevant governments from other WILPF sections and the peace movement in general is needed in order to bring about a change in this development. This campaign would be an important support for the Nordic peace organizations which try to influence their governments. however, its main importance lies in the fact that the situation in the North is a global risk factor.
The IEC and WILPF sections are asked to support these proposals:
- Disarmament negotiations for the Northern sea areas should be started at once, and not be postponed until the CFE negotiations in Vienna have been completed,
- The creation of a Nordic nuclear free zone,
- Demand for reduced military activity and maneuvers in the Northern areas.