News Archive
Apr 7, 2016 - Peace Boat Marks 6th Global Days of Action on Military Spending (April 5-18)
The Global Days of Action on Military Spending are part of the Global Campaign on Military Spending (GCOMS), led by the International Peace Bureau, that denounces the excessive military expenditure of governments around the world and calls for the reallocation of resources towards peace and sustainable human development.

Every year since 2011, civil society groups around the world organize events in April to coincide with the release of the annual world military expenditure figures by the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI).

On April 5, 2016, Peace Boat organized a presentation and workshop onboard its ship as it sailed in Northeast Asia, with Hibakusha (survivors of the atomic bombings ofHiroshima and Nagasaki) and a delegation of people from all over Asia and beyond.

Participants looked at the global sky-rocketing amount of military expenditures and compared the figures with what would be needed to meet urgent humanitarian needs worldwide and achieve the Sustainable Development Goals.

In 2015, global military expenditure totaled almost $1.7 trillion ($1676 billion) - a rise of 1% in real terms from the previous year, according to the new SIPRI data. In Asia and Oceania, military spending rose by 5.4%, reaching a total of $436 billion in the region. This trend reflects the growing tensions in Northeast and Southeast Asia. China, India, Japan and South Korea ranked among the top 10 global military spenders, while the Philippines increased their military expenditures of 25%, Indonesia of 16% and Australia of 7.8% last year.

On April 6, calling at Hiroshima, Peace Boat organized a press conference in cooperation with the World YMCA members taking part in a global citizenship programme onboard the voyage, and local YMCA Hiroshima members. Here, an appeal was issued for the reallocation of public funds from the military to social needs and peace and disarmament initiatives. Having heard testimonies from Hibakusha (survivors of the A-bombs in Hiroshima and Nagasaki) and learned about the tragedy of war and about the catastrophic consequences of the use of nuclear weapons, the statement also called for the immediate start of a process to negotiate a new legally-binding instrument to prohibit and eliminate nuclear weapons.

Peace Boatfs appeal, relayed by Japanese local and national media, is directed at the Foreign Ministers of the G7, scheduled to meet on April 10-11 in Hiroshima. Peace Boat will take part in civil society actions in the margin of the meeting.

Download Peace Boat statement in English and Japanese.
Read more about SIPRI new data.
Documents for download