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European Leaders Challenge NATO to Change Nuclear Status Quo

European Leaders Challenge NATO to Change Nuclear Status Quo

More than 40 former European leaders are calling on NATO members, meeting in Chicago this weekend for the 2012 NATO Summit, to take concrete steps toward changing the nuclear status quo. The leaders' statement, released today by the European Leadership Network, acknowledges that "so far, the signs do not look good" for changes based on the results of the DDPR. However, the leaders strongly encourage NATO members to begin work on a strategy to reduce nuclear risks in Europe while strengthening NATO’s ability to respond to today's threats.

The statement from the ELN calls on NATO leaders to take a range of steps, from recommitting to creating the conditions for a world without nuclear weapons to announcing an immediate 50 percent reduction in the number of U.S. non-strategic nuclear weapons in Europe, to more fully cooperating with Russia on the range of issues.

Des Browne and Volker Rühe expand on the ELN statement in a New York Times op-ed, "The Challenge for NATO in Chicago."

NSP principal Sam Nunn and former German chancellor Helmut Schmidt also offer specific recommendations for NATO in The International Herald Tribune. And for an in-depth perspective on NATO nuclear policy, see Reducing Nuclear Risks in Europe: A Framework for Action, from NTI.