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VIDEO: Celebrities make nuclear plea ahead of G8

Robert De Niro, Michael Douglas and Morgan Freeman are among a group of Hollywood stars calling on Group of Eight leaders to eliminate nuclear arms

AFP, Monday 17 Jun 2013
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Hollywood stars including Robert De Niro, Michael Douglas and Morgan Freeman are calling on Group of Eight leaders meeting in Northern Ireland this week to eliminate nuclear arms.

Oscar-winning Austrian actor Christoph Waltz and Matt Damon are also among the stars lending their faces and voices to the two-minute video plea by the anti-nuclear campaign group Global Zero.

"The message from national security experts and citizens around the world is clear: the only way to eliminate the global nuclear danger is to eliminate all nuclear weapons," says "Basic Instinct" star Douglas.

"It's time to set the world's course to zero," he adds.

Freeman says: "Nuclear weapons are obsolete relics of the Cold War, they do not address today's security threats, and they cost $1 trillion per decade globally ... It's time we get rid of them."

Global Zero co-founder Matt Brown said the video was intended to appeal to US President Barack Obama and his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin, due to meet on the sidelines of the G8 summit Monday and Tuesday.

"To set the world's course to zero nuclear weapons, President Obama will have to go beyond the bilateral process President (Ronald) Reagan started of US-Soviet/Russian arms reductions and bring the other leading nuclear powers into international arms negotiations for the first time in history," he said.

Other actors in the video -- which can be seen at www.globalzero.org -- include Alec Baldwin, John Cusack, Danny DeVito, Whoopi Goldberg, Zoe Kravitz, Martin Sheen and Naomi Watts.

Leaders of the G8 countries -- the United States, Britain, Germany, Russia, France, Japan, Italy and Canada -- will gather at Northern Ireland's exclusive Lough Erne golf resort.

The talks will likely be dominated by the Syrian war after the United States accused the regime of using chemical weapons, while the British hosts are determined to push a crackdown on tax evasion and boost global trade.

Global Zero added it has delivered a letter to the White House signed by some 75 former prime ministers, foreign and defense ministers, as well as military commanders, urging him to eliminate nuclear arms.

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