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Marshall Islands sues nine nuclear powers over disarmament failure

Pacific group takes case to the Hague over global failure to pursue disarmament

The tiny Pacific nation of the Marshall Islands began a legal battle today to demand the world’s nine nuclear-armed powers meet their disarmament obligations.

It accused them of “flagrant violations” of international law.

The island group, which was used for 67 US nuclear tests, filed a case with the International Court of Justice in the Hague.

It claims the nine countries are modernising their nuclear arsenals instead of negotiating disarmament.

The countries targeted include the US, Russia, Britain, France, China, Israel, India, Pakistan and North Korea.

The last four are not party to the 1968 Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty, but the lawsuit argues they are bound by its provisions under “customary international law.”

“Our people have suffered the catastrophic and irreparable damage of these weapons and we vow to fight so that no one else on earth will ever again experience these atrocities,” Foreign Minister Tony de Brum said.

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