Friends and Supporters of Article 9,
are delighted to send you an update on the future of the Global Article 9 Campaign
and to share information on Article 9-related developments that have occurred
in recent weeks.
| FUTURE OF THE GLOBAL ARTICLE 9 CAMPAIGN TO ABOLISH WAR
During the Conference and its follow-up, Conflict Prevention, Disarmament for Development and the Environment, and the Human Right to Peace have emerged as the main themes for the future of the campaign.
These three themes, in which the Global Article 9
Campaign can play a meaningful role and contribute significantly in the
future, encompass many dimensions, ranging from nuclear
abolition to peace education, demilitarization to peacebuilding, and
Currently, Campaign and Conference organizers and
secretariat members are having ongoing discussions towards
conceptualizing the general directions and defining concrete actions
for the next steps of the campaign in these areas. We look forward to
strengthening partnerships and developing joint activities, in the
fields of research, advocacy and
| ARTICLE 9 AT TICAD IV
The fourth Tokyo International Conference
on African Development (TICAD) was held in late May 2008. Discussions
focused on poverty, AIDS and development issues.
the Ministry of Foreign Affairs only issued a limited number of passes
to NGOs to participate in the actual TICAD meeting, over a hundred
participants from Japanese and African NGOs, as well as government and
UN officials met in a parallel civil society session.
General of the Global Article 9 Conference and leader of the Peace and
Human Rights Unit for the 2008 G8 Summit Kawasaki Akira participated in
the NGO session and seized this opportunity to speak about the Global
Article 9 Conference and Campaign, and more specifically on the
potential of Article 9 as a peace mechanism and its relevance in
light of the debate on Japan's dispatch of Self-Defence forces to Sudan,
he called for a discussion on the forms that Japan's
peacebuilding efforts in Africa should take, questioning whether sending troops
would be the best way for Japan
to foster peace in Africa. He warned that Japan's
contributions should not serve as an excuse for expanding its deployment
| BRINGING ARTICLE 9 TO THE G8
As the G8 Summit was held in Japan's Lake Toya early July, civil
society members from Japan and around the world gathered in Hokkaido.
The Global Article 9 Campaign also traveled there to report the
outcomes of the Global Conference that took place in May, and monitor the summit from
the perspective of Article 9's principles of disarmament for
development, and peace as a human right.
A workshop was held as part of the People's (Alternative) Summit
Sapporo, focusing on A World Without War - the Role of the G8 and
from Peace Boat, the
Foundation for Human Rights in Asia, the Japan Catholic Council for
Justice and Peace and a special guest from Action Aid Bangladesh
outcomes of the Global Article 9 Conference to Abolish War, and
participated in a lively discussion on the significance of the campaign
both Japanese domestic politics and the broader international peace
movement. Debate ranged from topics as varied as the role of the media,
between war and poverty, and how pacifism is seen from conflict
Rashed Al Titumir of Action Aid shared his perspective on the
of Article 9 as a mechanism for disarmament and peacebuilding, ending
with the memorable quote that "there were two important achievements
for humanity at the end of World War II. The first is the UN's
Universal Declaration of Human Rights; the second is Article 9 of
Lobbying activities at the International Media Centre also highlighted
Article 9 and its relation to disarmament, non-proliferation and
development. The Global Article 9 Conference's statement to the
G8, endorsed by the Japan Organizing Committee and key international
participants and supporters, was introduced. This statement calls for
the G8 countries, who together make up 70% of the world's military
expenditure, to reduce the money spent on arms and redirect resources to
peace, development and the environment.
(The full statement can be read
online here: http://www.whynot9.jp/doc/G8_Statement_en.pdf)
More information about campaigning at the G8 can be seen on Peace Boat's
G8 blog here:
OF SDF ABROAD
Sudan & Afghanistan
has announced it will send Ground Self-Defense Forces to Southern Sudan
as part of UNMIS, the UN peacekeeping mission that monitors the 2005
ceasefire agreement. Such dispatch will be the first Japanese
full-fledged participation in UN peacekeeping operations since
Foreign Ministry had long been pushing for the dispatch of SDF in
Sudan, but the Defense Ministry had been cautious because of safety
concerns. But the
objections of the Defense Ministry were overruled by the imperative of
using the momentum created by the G8 summit, during which African issues were at the top of the agenda.
Indeed, Prime Minister Fukuda Yasuo announced Japan's contribution to
UNMIS peacekeeping operations during UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon's
visit to Japan, a few days ahead of the summit.
Reactions to a
SDF deployment in Sudan
have been varied. In 2002, Japan
passed a special law concerning its participation in UN operations, but the
constitutionality of the International Peace Cooperation Law is debated, for it
substantially departs from the original interpretation of Article 9.
In addition, Japan is considering deploying Self-Defense Forces
personnel on the ground in Afghanistan
and providing airlift cargo as part of its logistic support for the
International Security Assistance Force (ISAF). The plan is presented as part
of non-military activities of ISAF led by NATO.
Such deployment would have to be
approved in the Diet when the antiterrorism special law comes up for renewal in
January. Last year, Japanese Prime Minister Yasuo
Fukuda faced vigorous opposition before being able to renew the so-called Anti-Terrorism Special Measures Law, which
authorizes the Maritime Self-Defense Force to refuel US vessels in the Indian
Ocean for their operations in Afghanistan.
And in May 2008, a court ruled Japan's
Air Self-Defense Forces' airlifting activities from and to Iraq were
unconstitutional for they contravened the war-renouncing Article 9 of the
PEACE PRIZE NOMINEE'S REMARKS ON ARTICLE 9
In May, the Niwano Peace Foundation awarded its 25th Niwano Peace Prize
to His Royal Highness Prince El Hassan bin Talal of Jordan "for his
tireless efforts toward building
peace with justice in the Middle East"
Following the award ceremony, Prince Hassan addressed a symposium on
the "Challenges Facing Religious People in the New Century." In his
remarks, he noted the role that Article 9 of the Japanese Constitution
has played in developing common standards of comprehension and shared
understanding since the end of World War II.
Named after the late
founder of the Buddhist organization Rissho Kosei-kai, Rev. Nikkyo
Niwano, the Niwano Peace Foundation promotes research and other
activities based on a
religious spirit that contribute to the realization of world peace and
the enhancement of a culture of peace. Established in 1983, the Niwano
Peace Prize honors and encourages individuals and organizations that
have contributed significantly to inter-religious understanding and
|FEATURED ARTICLES ON THE GLOBAL ARTICLE 9 CONFERENCE
Several guests and participants to the Global Article
9 Conference have written reports and articles providing their own in-depth and personal account of the conference.
See for example the following publications:
- Frederic Durand, "Japanese Rainbow Gathers Tens of Thousands to Defend" International Peace Bureau (May 2008)
- John Junkerman, "The Global Article 9 Conference: Towards the Abolition of War", Japan
Focus (May 25, 2008)
- Global Partnership for the Prevention of Armed Conflict (GPPAC),
"Global Article 9 Conference to Abolish War Huge Success"
(May 14, 2008)
- Nobel Women's Initiative, "Thousands Gather to Support Legislation to Abolish War" (May 6, 2008)
- Alice Slater, "Global Article 9 Campaign to Abolish War Launched in Japan" CommonDreams.org (June 2, 2008)
- Ann Wright, "Japanese People Still Say "No More Wars", truthout (May 5, 2008)
Thank you for your interest in and support for the
Global Article 9 Campaign to Abolish War.
forward to continue working with you all.
| Newsletter Editor:
Global Article 9 Campaign to Abolish War / Peace Boat