from Sunday Herald, 06 April 2008
The Scottish government working group aiming to get rid of Trident nuclear weapons is due to hold its first meeting in Edinburgh this week.
The 13-strong group, chaired by the minister for parliamentary business, Bruce Crawford, was set up last month to help further the Scottish National Party’s policy to make Scotland nuclear-free.
“The establishment of this group represents an important landmark in our aspiration to create a Scotland without nuclear weapons,” Crawford told the Sunday Herald.
“It is vital that, in taking our aspiration forward, the government should have a comprehensive understanding of the options open to us and of the economic, social and environmental implications. Wednesday’s meeting represents the beginning of that process.”
The group, including religious leaders, academics, activists, a lawyer and a trade unionist, has been tasked with finding legal, planning and regulatory ways to block the UK government’s plan to replace Britain’s Trident nuclear weapons system, stationed on the Clyde. The group will meet three times annually and is expected to make its first report to ministers after a year.
Last October the First Minister, Alex Salmond, wrote to over 180 countries to highlight Scotland’s opposition to nuclear weapons. So far 22 have replied, including Austria, Cuba, Germany, Ireland, Norway, Sweden, United Arab Emirates, Ukraine Venezuela and The Vatican.