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The latest news and events from the Welsh Centre for International Affairs. Update your profile to receive the e-news in Welsh. 

 

Scotland decides..... the last stand for Trident?

On the 18th of September a momentous decision will take place in Scotland when its citizens vote either "yes" or "no" for independence.

The removal of Trident from Scotland if the vote is "yes", is a major issue.The Scottish government has indicated that if its people vote "yes", Trident will be removed by 2020 and Scotland's constitution would ban nuclear weapons from being based in Scotland.

The port of Milford Haven is one potential location for Trident to move to and the First Minister, Carwyn Jones has stated that Wales would welcome this, although there are concerns about the dangers of relocating Trident near to major oil facilities.

In 2012 a cross-party group of MPs concluded that identifying and recreating a suitable base to replace Faslane and Coulport would be "highly problematic, very expensive, and fraught with political difficulties". The strategic benefits of nuclear weapons will inevitably form part of the debate.

Last year's UNA Wales' Nuclear Disarmament Survey indicated overwhelming opposition to Trident's renewal, supportive of its campaign for nuclear disarmament.

Whatever the referendum result, it will inevitably have an impact in Wales, with further Welsh devolution the likely outcome.

A right to peace? 

With the crises in Ukraine, Iraq, and Gaza to name but a few, it is likely that 2014 will be remembered for conflict rather than for peace. 

The 21st of September is the UN International Day of PeaceAnyone, anywhere can celebrate Peace Day. It can be as simple as lighting a candle, sitting in silent meditation, a day of reflection or of doing a good deed for someone. Each year on Peace Day, the UN ring the Japanese Peace Bell, gifted by UNA Japan in 1954.

According to former UN Secretary General, Boutros Boutros Ghali, the bell's message to humanity is that "Peace is precious. It is not enough to yearn for peace. Peace requires work -- long, hard, difficult work."

This year's theme is 'The right of peoples to peace' and the UN has called for all nations and people to honour a cessation of hostilities on the day.

The right to peace has proved controversial with the USA expressing concerns that trying to define such a right could possibly be dangerous to human rights and amid confusion over whether the right is individual or collective.  

In Swansea, Peace Day is being observed by an Arts Music Festival with speakers and films. More details here 

WW1 event: Remembering War and Working for Peace

As part of the National Assembly of Wales’ First World War memorial activities, CEWC are holding an educational event for students aged 14-18 about the First World War and the impact of conflict at the Senedd in Cardiff Bay on 11th November 2014. 

The day is an opportunity for students not only to remember those who died in the war, but also to understand the views of different countries and groups of people, including those that stayed at home. It will enable students to consider and to think critically about current situations of conflict and to discuss how young people can promote reconciliation, justice and peace in the future. 

The UN right to peace would be an interesting topic for discussion.

UNA Wales out and about!

UNA Wales took to the road over the summer when Hazel McDonald, the UNA Wales intern, went to the Vale of Glamorgan show on the 13th August to spread the word about the work that UNA Wales and the UN does. 

Amid changeable weather she had “very interesting conversations with a diverse range of people.”  So thank you for stopping by and learning more about the UNA Wales and the UN. 

Keep the memory alive

"Why did I survive, when so many died? Perhaps I survived to bear witness, to keep the memory alive"
(Iby Knill, a survivor of Auschwitz).
 
The 27th of January 2015 marks Holocaust Memorial Day when the millions killed in the Holocaust, under Nazi persecution and in other genocides such as those in Cambodia, Rwanda, Bosnia and Darfur, are remembered. It's a time to honour the survivors, reflect upon the lessons of their experiences, to challenge hatred and persecution and to act to prevent future atrocities.
 
Last year over 2,400 local activities took place to mark Holocaust Memorial Day. Those interested in organising an activity can access hmd.org.ukwhere the Holocaust Memorial Day Trust has a wealth of resources, or contact the National Support Worker for Wales, Sally Richards by emailingsally.wales@hmd.org.uk

The Welsh National Garden of Peace adjacent to the Temple of Peace contains a memorial to the victims of the Armenian genocide in 1915.


 



NATO WALES 2014 hailed a success

Attended by the leaders of over 60 countries, the NATO Wales summit addressed issues that threaten NATO members' state security such as terrorism, cyber attacks, fragile states and piracy.

The crises in eastern Europe and the Middle East however dominated the agenda with the alliance determining to stand up to Russian President Vladimir Putin over his country’s actions in Ukraine and creating a new multinational spearhead collective defence force, capable of deployment anywhere in the world within two to five days. Member states also undertook to spend 2% of GDP on defence.

Two WCIA views on the alliance:

'Standing up to Russia sinks any humanitarian role for NATO'
An academic perspective from Peter Sutch, WCIA trustee and Professor of Politics and International Relations, Cardiff University (The Conversation)

'A Good Enough Alliance? 
Blog by Martin Pollard, WCIA Chief Executive (WCIA Voices)

Autumn Events at the Temple of Peace

13 October  - Should drugs be legalised?
Drug legalisation debate with Professor David Nutt of drugscience and Pippa Bartolotti, Wales Green Party Leader
Register here

12 November - WCIA's 41st Anniversary Lecture
by Valerie Amos, the Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs and Emergency Relief Coordinator
Register here

26 November - Are we there yet?
LGBT rights in Wales and the World, with Peter Tatchell
Register here

More information and event registration details at
www.wcia.org.uk.

Our events

Drug legalisation debate with Professor Nutt and Pippa Bartolotti, 13 October, Temple of Peace, Cardiff
Register here

WCIA's 41st Anniversary Lecture by Valerie Amos 
12 November, Temple of Peace, Cardiff.
Register here

Are we there yet? LGBT rights in Wales and the World
26 November, Temple of Peace, Cardiff.
Register here

Debating Championships  
Our annual tournament takes place from October to November and is open to every secondary school and college in Wales. Regional Rounds, the Quarter and Semi finals details can be found here
The Grand Final will take place on December 2nd.
Register here

WW1 event: Remembering War and Working for Peace
Senedd in Cardiff Bay on Tuesday, 11th November 2014 from 9.00am to 4.00pm.

Other dates for your diary

Direct Democracy Wales, UNA Cardiff & District branch.
16th Septmber at 7pm, Temple of Peace, Cardiff 

United Nations International Day of Peace
Art music festival. Sunday 21st September 11 -3, Mumbles Ostreme Centre Swansea

Michael Mann: Cabot Institute Lecture: The Hockey Stick and the Climate Wars 23rd September 2014, 18.00-19.15, The Victoria Rooms, Bristol
Book here for tickets.

Francis Fukuyama: Political Order and Political Decay: From the Industrial Revolution to the Globalisation of Democracy
23rd September 2014, 19.30-20.30, Wills Memorial Building, University of Bristol.
Book here for tickets.

Friends of the Earth Cymru: 30th Anniversary
7pm - late, Friday 26th September. Jacob's Market, West Canal Wharf, Cardiff
e-mail bleddyn.lake@foe.co.uk,for tickets.

Handling Conflict: A Weekend Workshop / Alternatives to Violence Project 
3 - 5 October Cardiff Meeting House

Cardiff, City of Sanctuary and Universities of Sanctuary, UNA Cardiff and District branch
7 October at 7pm, Temple of Peace, Cardiff

Shrapnel and Blueberries: a history of UNA and work camps in Cardiff, UNA Cardiff and District branch
23 October, Cardiff

WACL gold star event, 
04 December 2014 8.00 - 17.00
Wales Africa Community Links, Cardiff. 

Support the WCIA 

Find out more.

Join UNA Wales and UNA-UK.
 


Blogs

'Standing up to Russia sinks any humanitarian role for NATO'
An academic perspective from Peter Sutch, WCIA trustee and Professor of Politics and International Relations, Cardiff University (The Conversation)

'A Good Enough Alliance? 
Blog by Martin Pollard, WCIA Chief Executive (WCIA Voices)
Copyright © 2014 Welsh Centre for International Affairs (WCIA), All rights reserved.





 
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