Nuclear war could be a 'tantrum away,' says head of Nobel Peace Prize-winning ICAN

By Daniel Uria
Nuclear war could be a 'tantrum away,' says head of Nobel Peace Prize-winning ICAN
Beatrice Fihn (R), executive director of the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons, warned that nuclear war is a "tantrum away" while accepting the Nobel Peace Prize alongside Hiroshima survivor Setsuko Thurlow (C). Photo by Rune Hellestad/ UPI | License Photo

Dec. 10 (UPI) -- The head of the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons accepted the Nobel Peace Prize Sunday and warned nuclear war could be a "tantrum away."

Beatrice Fihn, executive director of the Switzerland-based, anti-nuclear weapons advocacy group, hinted at increasing nuclear tensions between the North Korea and the United States as she called for an end to nuclear weapons.


"The deaths of millions may be one tiny tantrum away," she said.

ICAN was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in October when the Norwegian Nobel Committee praised the coalition of non-governmental organizations for "its work to draw attention to the catastrophic humanitarian consequences of any use of nuclear weapons and for its ground-breaking efforts to achieve a treaty-based prohibition of such weapons."

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Fihn accepted the award alongside Setsuko Thurlow, who survived the Hiroshima nuclear bombing in 1945.

"This is unacceptable human suffering. No human being should ever experience what we experienced," she said of the bombing.

Fihn urged nations to bring the U.N. treaty to ban nuclear weapons into action, as she warned the threat of nuclear war is "greater today than during the Cold War."

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"We are facing a clear choice right now. The end of nuclear weapons or the end of us," she said.

More than 120 nations backed the treaty in July, but nearly all countries that bear nuclear arms, as well as those that benefit from their protection, boycotted the negotiation, except the Netherlands which ultimately voted against the treaty.

Thurlow called on Japan, which was among the nations to boycott the treaty, to sign the ban.

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"Japan has moral responsibility," she said.

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