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Historic Conference Takes On Nuclear Weapons

Marchers take part in the 2015 Peace and Planet, held on the eve of the NPT Review Conference.  Photo: Kyle Depew / AFSC

Advocates from across the world gather to address new threats

NEW YORK (May 2, 2019) – On May 4, hundreds will gather in New York City for the New Thinking and Movement Building conference. The conference brings together anti-nuclear activists from across the world, as well as representatives from the Movement for Black Lives, the labor movement, and others, to discuss the changing world disorder, growing nuclear dangers, and how to work for a nuclear-free future. The conference will take place on May 4 from 8:30 – 5:30 at the Judson Memorial Church, 55 Washington Square.

“In the wake of the collapse of the Intermediate Nuclear Forces Treaty and the U.S., Russia and China on the brink of a dangerous unrestrained nuclear arms race, the conference will bring together many of the world's leading nuclear disarmament activists,” says Joseph Gerson, conference organizer and disarmament coordinator for the American Friends Service Committee. “We will come together to develop new popular movement approaches to help prevent war and to promote justice and democracy in this increasingly dangerous time.”

Featured speakers include Daniel Ellsberg (via video); Boris Kargarlitsky, Institute for Globalization Studies and Social Movements (Russia); Sharon Dolev, Israeli Disarmament Movement (Israel); Lee Tae-ho, People’s Solidarity for Participatory Democracy (Republic of Korea); Reiner Braun, International Peace Bureau (Germany); Karlene Griffiths Sekou, Movement for Black Lives; Andrew Lichterman, Western States Legal Foundation; Arielle Denis, International Peace Bureau (France), Achin Vanaik, Coalition for Nuclear Disarmament and Peace (India); Yayoi Tsuchida, The Japan Council Against Atomic and Hydrogen Bombs (Japan); Reese Chenault, U.S. Labor Against the War; Oleg Bodrov, Coalition Clean Baltic (Russia), and Joseph Gerson, American Friends Service Committee.

The conference will be held during the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty Preparatory Committee meetings at the United Nations, and will provide a forum to analyze the diplomacy and debates within the U.N. and develop strategies to influence its outcome.


The American Friends Service Committee is a Quaker organization that includes people of various faiths who are committed to social justice, peace and humanitarian service. Its work is based on the belief in the worth of every person and faith in the power of love to overcome violence and injustice.