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Press Release of the Dicastery for Promoting Integral Human Development, 07.11.2017

On Friday 10 and Saturday 11 November 2017, at the New Synod Hall in the Vatican, the Dicastery for Promoting Integral Human Development will hold an International Symposium: “Prospects for a World Free from Nuclear Weapons and for Integral Disarmament”. The Prefect, His Eminence Cardinal Peter K. A. Turkson, pointed out that "the event responds to the priorities of Pope Francis to take action for world Peace and to use the resources of creation for a sustainable development and to improve the quality of life for all, individuals and countries, without discrimination”. Monsignor Bruno Marie Duffé, Secretary of the Dicastery, stressed at the International Atomic Energy Agency Conference, held in Vienna from 18 to 22 September 2017, the importance of the “moral responsibility of the States” and the challenge of a “common strategy of dialogue”, invoked by the Holy Father.

This Vatican Conference represents the first global gathering on Atomic Disarmament after the approval of the “Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons”, signed by 122 Countries of the international community (including the Holy See), in New York on 7 July 2017, and opened to signature 20 September 2017, in the same City.

The International Conference will be attended by eleven Nobel Peace Laureates, UN and NATO top representatives, diplomats from the Russian Federation, United States, South Korea, Iran, as well as top experts on armaments and weapons and the heads of major foundations and of civil society organizations that for a long time have been actively engaged in this issue. Representatives of Episcopal Conferences, of Christian denominations and of other faiths, and a delegation of senior professors and students from US and Russian universities, will attend this Vatican event.

Particularly significant will be the presence of Masako WADA, Assistant Secretary General of Nihon Hidankyo, one of the last survivors of the Hiroshima’s nuclear attack, who will represent the victims of nuclear weapons and of nuclear experiments.

From the Holy See the Secretary of State, His Eminence Cardinal Pietro Parolin, and the leadership of the Dicastery for Promoting Integral Human Development, will participate.

Pope Francis will receive the participants at an Audience that will take place in the Clementine Hall of the Apostolic Palace, on 10 November at 12.00, and he will give an official address.

The Conference benefits from the cooperation with: Embassy of Italy to the Holy See; Catholic Bishops’ Conference of Germany; Catholic Bishops’ Conference of Japan; Centro Interdisciplinare Scienze per la Pace (CISP), Università di Pisa; Georgetown University; Kroc Institute for International Peace Studies of the Keough School of Global Affairs; Mazda Motor Europe GmbH; Notre Dame University; Nuclear Threat Initiative; Pugwash Conferences on Science and World Affairs; Senzatomica; Soka Gakkai International; Unione degli Scienziati per il Disarmo ONLUS (USPID).