Mayor David Dinkins urged a dozen mayors from the United States and the Soviet Union to pressure their federal governments into banning all nuclear weapons testing and sending the defense savings to problem-plagued cities around the world.
Speaking Sunday at the United Nations on the eve of a U.N. conference focusing on an international prohibition of all nuclear testing, Dinkins addressed five U.S. mayors, all from the Northeast, and seven of their Soviet counterparts.The mayors were meeting to discuss the implications of a Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty on domestic and urban policies in both countries now that the two superpowers have unofficially declared an end to the Cold War and in some instances, such as the international embargo of Iraq, found themselves working together.
Dinkins cited the easing of U.S.-Soviet tensions and saving the environment from the damage of further testing as compelling reasons for the United States and Great Britain to join the Soviet Union in expressing support for a comprehensive ban on nuclear testing, both above and underground.
"For more than 70 years, the American and Soviet peoples have been taught to distrust each other," said Dinkins, adding that the two societies must now "turn our weapons and missiles into trucks and other useful industrial products for our own people and for people throughout the world.
"In both countries, it is time to turn our economies and our societies - and that includes the banning of all tests, anywhere," the mayor said.