I’m one of the signatories on a letter in The Guardian today:
The revelation that a senior defence official has told the arms industry that the government plans to spend £3bn to replace the UK’s 160 nuclear warheads is truly deplorable (Report, July 25). If the government has reached even a preliminary view on the matter this should first be made known to parliament, and not to industrial interests.
Capital investment at the Atomic Weapons Establishment has ballooned from £24m to £420m in just seven years. It concerns us greatly that in a few years we are to be presented with a fait accompli, where all the money has been spent and it is merely a question of the final go-ahead for the production of a new generation of potentially more “usable” nuclear weapons.
A broad coalition, encompassing both US presidential candidates, Henry Kissinger and a cross-party group of former UK foreign and defence secretaries is pushing for serious progress on multilateral disarmament negotiations. The UK should fully commit to these and avoid moving in a direction that harms the prospect of international cooperation towards a nuclear-free world.
Jeremy Corbyn MP, Colin Challen MP, Lynne Featherstone MP, Neil Gerrard MP, John Hemming MP, Lynne Jones MP, Gordon Prentice MP, Joan Walley MP