Australia should be supporting a resumption of the Six-Party Talks on North Korea’s Nuclear Program, which began in 2003 and involves both Koreas, Japan, USA, China and Russia. These talks offer the possibility of de-escalating the conflict between the USA and North Korea, and of working for a comprehensive outcome that takes into account the concerns of all and lessens the risk of a catastrophic war.

The response of the Australian Government to the recent increase in tension over North Korea has been misleading in relation to ANZUS, and shows little sign of any attempt to achieve a peaceful solution.  The ANZUS treaty does not require military action from Australia, but rather consultation, in the event of any attack directed at the U.S.

The Prime Minister’s immediate response – supporting the US to the hilt – reflects an appalling lack of judgement about the risks of nuclear war and potentially endangers millions of lives including Australians. 

Any decision about Australia’s involvement in a war must be subject to a proper debate in Parliament and not exclusively by the Cabinet, as has been advocated by many people since the misguided engagement in the Iraq war. The implications of joining in any combat mission are too important to be entrusted to government leaders alone.

There will be a gathering of concerned citizens at the Melbourne Avenue entry to Parliament House from 7.30am this Wednesday 16 August to draw MPs and Senators attention to the importance of Australia supporting a resumption of the Six-Party Talks on North Korea and refraining from militaristic comments at this critical time.  All those in support are invited to join.

About IPAN

IPAN is an umbrella organization of around 45 local and national community and other groups and individuals concerned about peace and Australia’s independence.