Archive for November 9th, 2011


Middle East Nuclear Free Bid Moves to Finland – Yet Another Lost Chance?

Human Wrongs Watch

By Baher Kamal*

Cairo – The four-decade-long bid to liberate the Middle East from all weapons of mass destruction (WMD) starting with nukes, will move next year to Helsinki as Finland surprisingly decided to host an international conference on the establishment of a Middle East nuclear-free zone.

Israel's Dimona nuclear power plant. Credit:

The announcement of the conference venue, which was made by the UN on October 14, 2011, falls during a new high peak in the on-going Arab Spring in several countries, mainly Tunisia, Egypt and Libya, and the continuing bitter popular uprisings against dictatorial regimes in Yemen and Syria, among others.

The decision also coincides with a strong, increasing wave of popular protests in some key Arab countries against Israel – the sole country in the region to have nuclear weapons, estimated at 210 and 250 atomic warheads. This number is equivalent to more than double of the combined atomic arsenals of India and Pakistan.

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