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The Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament marched through London

A senior Labour politician has hit out at anti-nuclear group CND over its “appalling comparison” between nuclear weapons and the gas chambers used in the Holocaust.

Ian Austin

Ian Austin

Ian Austin, Labour MP for Dudley North, was reacting to a memo circulated from the Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament ahead of a rally in Trafalgar Square on Saturday, where thousands of protesters braved the cold to protest the renewal of the Trident nuclear programme.

In the briefing note, CND staffers said: “While no technology is ever ‘un-invented,’ we regularly see an end to use or production, particularly where a technology is outlawed for humanitarian or legal reasons, such as the gas chambers of WWII.”

Austin reacted with dismay, saying “This is an appalling comparison. To compare gas chambers which were used to murder millions of people with a nuclear deterrent which has helped keep the peace is incomprehensible. How could anyone ever suggest that there was ever a time when gas chambers could be considered a legitimate weapon like a nuclear deterrent?”

CND is backed by Labour party leader Jeremy Corbyn and Scottish National Party leader Nicola Sturgeon, but the Conservative Party have pledged to renew Trident at a cost of more than £40 billion.