Health workers in the North East have staged a demonstration to support a ban on nuclear weapons.

Medact North East is calling councils to back a UN Treaty that would give them the same status as chemical and biological weapons, cluster bombs and landmines.

On Saturday, they dropped a banner from the Millennium Bridge in Gateshead reading “Health Workers for the Nuclear Weapons Ban”.

The group of GPs, pharmacists, junior doctors, nurses, physiotherapists, public health professionals and therapists pulled the stunt and sent letters to local councils and MPs calling on them to support the ban.

Dr Nate Aspray, who is a GP, said: “The escalating risk of the use of nuclear weapons is a threat to the continued health of our planet as a whole.

“While many countries are prepared to use nuclear weapons, their healthcare infrastructure is not and cannot be prepared for the humanitarian catastrophe that would result from the use of just one nuclear weapon within their borders, let alone the far reaching implications of radiation on the health of women and children.”

The Northern Echo: Medact North East dropped a banner from the Millennium Bridge in Gateshead. Pictures: NORTH NEWS Medact North East dropped a banner from the Millennium Bridge in Gateshead. Pictures: NORTH NEWS

The Government has not signed the UN Nuclear Ban Treaty, and is not planning send an observer to the first meeting of signatories which is happening this week.

Lesley Storey, councillor for South Jesmond, said: “I visited Hiroshima in 2018 and witnessing the horror and devastation some 64 years after the bomb was dropped will stay with me forever.

“Nuclear weapons should have no place in our world, it is not naive to hold this view rather it is about compassion and care for our children’s futures and the security of our planet.”

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