HC Deb 01 August 1980 vol 989 cc1899-900 9.35 am
Mr. Laurie Pavitt (Brent, South)

With your permission, Mr. Speaker, and that of the House, I beg leave to present a petition on a matter of grave importance not only to my constituents and my country but to mankind in all continents of the world.

Led by Father Cowan, a peace group from the Catholic Church in Willesden, assisted by members of the Methodist Church in Harlesden, collected 1,241 signatures in less than a fortnight.

The petition sheweth That the world is now entering a very critical stage, with immense economic, trade, ecological, environmental, military and survival problems, which if not attended to immediately, will cause the collapse of both the rich and the poor countries of the world by the year 2000; That the money, energy, brain-power, time and resources spent at present on arms on a world-wide scale, if diverted and used intelligently, could save our world and make it a better place to live in, these being some of the recommendations of the Brandt report, "North-South: A Programme for Survival. Wherefore your petitioners pray that your House and Britain, with her great reputation for diplomacy in international affairs, take the initiative to

  1. (1) negotiate with all the countries of North-South for the scaling down and eventual removal of all weapons, nuclear, chemical, etc., which threaten the existence of our world; and at the same time
  2. (2) negotiate with these same countries for the survival of our world by providing the necessary trade, aid, trust and other links to guarantee this survival. And your petitioners, as in duty bound, will ever pray, &c.
This petition is the voice of ordinary folk speaking on behalf of the poor and humble throughout the world, irrespective of race, colour or creed. It is not too late for the powerful and mighty to listen and to act.

I beg leave to present the petition.

To lie upon the Table.

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