Proposition One


Zimbabwe Has The Last Word

Zimbabwe, alphabetically the last to speak, was added to the schedule for oral testimony after the hearings had begun. A leader of the 113-member Non-Aligned Movement in the U.N., Zimbabwe in 1992 drafted the resolution which led to the hearings. Zimbabwe's delegate, Jonathan Wutawunashe, drew the Court's attention to a current legislative effort in the U.S. to outlaw nuclear weapons:

"(T)here are many prominent citizens in nuclear countries, including church leaders, military people, members of parliament, and parliamentary initiatives supporting this initiative and the elimination of nuclear weapons. Zimbabwe would like to mention one in particular, the Nuclear Disarmament and Economic Conversion Bill introduced into the 104th United States Congress as a result of a citizens'-initiated referendum. United States Congressmember and introducer of the Bill, Eleanor Holmes Norton, sent a letter to this Court on 3 November 1995, describing the Bill and urging this Court to 'consider the legacy it will pass on to our children, and to issue a strong opinion in favour of nuclear disarmament'." (Ms. Norton's letter, which Ellen had personally delivered, is the last written attachment to this historic case.)
Mr Wutawunashe addressed the arguments made earlier in the day by the United Kingdom and United States, and expressed agreement with the oral testimonies of Costa Rica, Egypt, Indonesia, Iran, Malaysia, Marshall Islands, Mexico, New Zealand, Samoa, and the written testimonies of Nauru and Solomon Islands on various points of law.
He mentioned several important books and articles by scientists, and referred to a statement submitted with Solomon Islands' oral testimony by nuclear physicist and Nobel Peace Prize Winner Joseph Rotblat that "any use of nuclear weapons would cause unnecessary suffering, be indiscriminate and would affect the territories of third States."
The lawyers of World Court Project worked closely with Zimbabwe'sdelegation, as indeed they had with several other delegations, in presenting oral testimony, and alerted Zimbabwe to Ms. Norton's contribution to efforts to create binding law in the United States which would lead to a global ban nuclear weapons.