More than 100 Nobel Laureates from various disciplines are calling for peace in the face of the war in Ukraine emanating from Russian soil. They have signed a declaration initiated by the Max Planck Society and supported by the Lindau Nobel Laureate Meetings.
The Declaration follows on from the 1955 Mainau Declaration against the use of nuclear weapons (pdf). It was co-initiated by Otto Hahn, 16-time participant of the Lindau Conferences and first President of the Max Planck Society, at the 5th Lindau Nobel Laureate Conference. The current declaration states: “The discovery of nuclear fission created the basis for the construction of nuclear weapons of destruction. Their current volume has the potential to make the Earth uninhabitable for humans and to wipe out human civilisation. Such weapons must therefore never be used.”
The 103 signatories call on governments and business leaders to use scientific knowledge and technologies responsibly and with awareness of their long-term consequences. Russian President Vladimir Putin is urged to respect international legal agreements, recall his forces, start negotiations and establish peace.
The Lindau Nobel Laureate Meetings and the Max Planck Society are convinced that science must continue the dialogue even if politics remains silent, or fights. With this comes the hope that this initiative, along with countless others, will soon lead to a return to peaceful exchange between nations.
Munich – 28 February 2022
Call for Peace from the International Scientific Community by Nobel Laureates
In the view of war emanating from Russian soil and the explicit threat of nuclear weapons, we, Nobel laureates in science, economics, and literature, have decided to make this appeal to government leaders.
While we, as scientists, have no political mandate, we are aware of the power that the knowledge we have gained conveys to governments and political actors.
After all, findings and technologies from scientific research and development have made humans the greatest shaping force in the Earth’s system over the last century. The discovery of nuclear fission created the basis for the construction of nuclear weapons of destruction. Their current volume has the potential to make the Earth uninhabitable for humans and to wipe out human civilisation. Such weapons must therefore never be used!
We as scientists are convinced that scientific knowledge of all disciplines and the technologies based on it will bring the greatest benefit to humanity in the future. They can only be achieved through worldwide scientific cooperation. Without them, global problems cannot be solved. The prerequisite is that these findings are used exclusively for peaceful purposes and for the well-being and happiness of all people, while respecting the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.
We therefore call on governments and business leaders to use scientific knowledge and technologies responsibly and with awareness of their long-term consequences. Only in this way can human civilisation continue to develop in a respectful manner towards nature and the Earth’s system in the future. The fundamental principles of the United Nations Charter on the Peaceful Coexistence of Peoples are the prerequisite for our work across borders for the benefit of the Earth and its people.
We call on Russian President Vladimir Putin to respect the agreements under international law, to recall his armed forces, to start negotiations and to establish peace.