Ecumenical News International

Protestant peace associations call for disarmament and securing peace by civil means

May 7, 2015

Bonn (epd). To mark the 70th anniversary of the end of World War II on 8 May, church-related peace associations have called for disarmament and more commitment to civil conflict solutions. "70 years after the end of the Second World War, securing peace still remains the prime political mission of the international community," stated the call released in Bonn. "The use of military force does not create peace, it triggers new conflicts." Among the signatories were Renke Brahms, peace spokesman for the Evangelical Church in Germany (EKD), the Action Committee Service for Peace, the Protestant Association for Conscientious Objection and Peace and representatives of regional Protestant and Free churches.

The document calls on the federal parliament and government to step up funds for civil methods of securing peace, instead of raising the budget of the federal armed forces. Exports of small arms and weapons exports to third states should not be approved. In addition, the document sees the need for a "clear rise in humanitarian commitment when it comes to receiving refugees" and an active development policy, in order to combat the causes of conflict in crisis and war areas. Commitment to disarmament also includes the readiness to act unilaterally, state the signatories to the call.

The peace spokespersons highlight the special responsibility of Germany in view of the 60 million victims of the Nazi regime and the Second World War. Another reason for the statement is the 60th anniversary of NATO membership: the Federal Republic of Germany joined the North Atlantic Treaty Alliance on 9 May 1955.



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