Council, 25 March 1998.

Whereas nuclear weapons pose a continuing threat to civilization, the human species, and life itself;

Whereas cities have been primary targets of nuclear weapons throughout the Nuclear Age and remain vulnerable to the massive destructive effects of nuclear weapons;

Whereas the development and maintenance of nuclear arsenals are extraordinarily costly, still costing billions of dollars per year, and these resources could be far better utilised for rebuilding the infrastructure of our cities, supporting the health and welfare of our citizens, and protecting and enhancing the quality of the environment;

Whereas the five declared nuclear weapons states (United States, Russia, United Kingdom, France and China) promised at the Non-Proliferation Treaty Review and Extension Conference in May 1995 to pursue "systematic and progressive efforts to reduce nuclear weapons globally, with the ultimate goal of eliminating these weapons";

Whereas the International Court of Justice ruled unanimously in July 1996, "There exists an obligation to pursue in good faith and bring to a conclusion negotiations leading to nuclear disarmament in all its aspects under strict and effective international control";

Whereas retired US General Lee Butler, once responsible for all US strategic nuclear forces, has called nuclear weapons "inherently dangerous, hugely expensive, militarily inefficient and morally indefensible";

Whereas the end of the Cold War has provided an unparalleled opportunity to end the nuclear weapons era, which would fulfil our responsibility to present and future generations;

Now, therefore, be it resolved that the Christchurch City Council

Reaffirms its 15 March 1982 declaration of Christchurch as a Nuclear Weapon-Free Zone, supports New Zealand's 1987 nuclear-free law, and supports the further development of Nuclear Weapon-Free Zones throughout the world;

Calls for all nuclear weapons to be taken off alert status, for all nuclear warheads to be separated from their delivery vehicles, and for the nuclear weapons states to agree to unconditional no first use of these weapons;

Calls upon the governments of all nuclear weapons states to begin negotiations immediately on a Nuclear Weapons Convention to prohibit and eliminate all nuclear weapons early in the next century, and to complete these negotiations by the year 2000; and

Orders that copies of this resolution be made available to the media, the public, and sent to New Zealand political leaders in Parliament, New Zealand local councils, and to the Embassies in New Zealand of the nuclear weapon states.