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Doomsday Clock moves even closer to midnight

ANTI-NUCLEAR campaigners urged the government to fight the “twin existential threats” of nuclear weapons and climate crisis today after the Doomsday Clock was moved closer to midnight.

The Clock, a metaphorical symbol for nuclear and environmental apocalypse, has been moved forwards by 20 seconds by the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists, and now stands at 100 seconds to midnight.

This suggests that the prospect of nuclear warfare and environmental catastrophe is becoming increasingly likely.

It is the closest to midnight the clock has been since atomic scientists began assessing the nuclear situation and the likelihood of global nuclear catastrophe in 1947.

The Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament (CND) has called for Prime Minister Boris Johnson to revive the Iran nuclear deal, which currently hangs in the balance after confrontations between the US and Iran earlier this month.

CND general secretary Kate Hudson said: "These expert warnings show how real the twin existential threats of nuclear warfare and the climate crisis are. Urgent action must be taken to avert disaster.

"The first priority of Prime Minister Johnson must be to do all he can to save the Iran nuclear deal.

“We cannot allow this landmark pact — which has successfully reduced the threat of nuclear proliferation in the Middle East — to be torn up by a belligerent US president.”

She also urged Mr Johnson to “bolster” the Non-Proliferation Treaty in 2020, adding: "Replacing Britain's own nuclear weapons system, at a cost of £205 billion, is contributing to the global drive to catastrophe.

“It’s time for the UK to change track and play a serious role in securing humanity’s survival.”

Scottish National Party MSP Bill Kid has tabled a motion at Holyrood calling for a “real steps in good faith” approach to nuclear disarmament.

Scottish CND chairwoman Lynn Jamieson said: “We appreciate the stark realism of the Bulletin's assessment of the horrifying risk we face every single day and hope that this will lead to real and immediate action.

“We need an immediate step back from the brink by the nuclear-armed states and those seeking to acquire these weapons.

“Above all we need to begin the journey towards the total elimination of these weapons via the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons.”

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