To Demilitarize and Denuclearize Trieste


Alessandro Capuzzo – TRANSCEND Media Service

11 Feb 2019 – The port of Trieste, the subject of an allied bombing in 1944 with 500 deaths and 1000 wounded, also saved by the nazi-fascist destruction in the last days of war, is now place of transit for authentic death instruments.

Pursuant to the Peace Treaty between Italy and the winning powers, Territory and International Free port of Trieste should be demilitarized and protected by the United Nations. In 1954, the Italian government inherited from the Anglo-American troops the civil administration of the A zone of this Territory (the B zone being governed by the Jugoslavian administration). Comprising the town of Trieste, which the Peace Treaty defined as “demilitarized and neutral”, without armed forces not authorized by the Security Council.

This town and his international free port, has instead become a starting point for weapons carried to war-related regimes, and of the possible presence of weapons of mass destruction aboard the military nuclear ships in transit.

Loads of weapons departing from the port to countries in war

The port of Trieste is a starting point for Italian weapon systems that fuel conflicts and tensions in the world. Institute of Statistics reported the shipment of war material to the United Arab Emirates – which is part of Saudi-led coalition that invaded Yemen – for more than 12 million Euros in 2013 and more than 6 million euros in 2015. “Danilo Dolci” peace committee remarked that on June 10, the memory day of the allied bombings which in 1944 ravaged Trieste and Muggia, killing 500 and injuring 1000 among the civilian population.

Today, Italian arm systems are used by the Saudi-led coalition making war in Yemen, despite the invasion has never been legitimized by the UN, but condemned by former Secretary Ban Ki-moon. A report to the Security Council shows the use of Italian bombings on civilian areas in Yemen and highlights how this can be a war crime.

A group of citizens has exposed the facts to the Prosecutor’s office in 2016, signaling the sensitive exports departing from Trieste’s port to the United Arab Emirates, part of the Saudi-led military coalition. Law 185/1990 expressly prohibits exports of armaments to countries in armed conflict, and whose policy contrasts with principles of the Italian Constitution (war repudiation as article 11).

Citizens must make their voice heard, asking the Italian government responsible for the civil administration to suspend the sending of arms to all conflicting countries, in respect of law and Constitution.

The UN Nuclear Ban Treaty and the ports of Trieste and Koper

The Nuclear Ban Treaty, which most UN member countries have set up under pressure of the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons (ICAN, Nobel Peace prize 2017 !) can determine the definitive start of disarmament previewed by the Non-Proliferation Treaty, by changing the ratios of force between nuclear and non-nuclear states, introducing transparent rules for the benefit of civil society and the whole of humanity; which survival is threatened by thousands of atomic heads ready to use.

Trieste is particularly involved, as an epicenter of a territory that the 1947 Peace Treaty called demilitarized and neutral.

Presently Italy and Slovenia share the Gulf of Trieste with Croatia. All three countries are part of the Atlantic alliance and have expressed their opposition to this Treaty, as they are involved in the alliance’s nuclear programs.

The Gulf of Trieste hosts two transit military nuclear ports, Trieste in Italy and Koper-Capodistria in Slovenia, whose insistence in the two urban centers makes it impossible to seriously prevent risks, both in terms of nuclear propulsion of ships and in presence (who knows about ?) of weapons of mass destruction, with the possibility to become a nuclear military target in turn.

In addition, the secret “for security reasons” on timely news, prevents risk assessment in relation to existing dangers, forcing institutions to omit important parts of information and thus hiding dangers of situations to the population.

Alessandro Capuzzo of Democracy in Europe Movement 2025 – Trieste and former Mayor of Koper / Capodistria and former Slovenian MEP Aurelio Juri have therefore proposed to the Conference on the Treaty for the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons (Document A / CONF.229 / 2017 / NGO / WP.44 of 20 June 2017) to initiate risk and transparency studies in the field – with a view to anticipated denuclearization – to be entrusted to the School of nuclear prevention established by Vienna’s International atomic energy agency at the International center of theoretical physics in Trieste.

In addition to Trieste and Koper, the 11 Italian military nuclear ports (Venice, Brindisi, Taranto, Augusta, Castellammare di Stabia, Naples, Gaeta, Livorno, La Spezia, La Maddalena, Cagliari) and the Ghedi and Aviano nuclear air bases can benefit of it.

On 20th September, the United Nations had begun the Nuclear Ban Treaty process of ratification. Thus, the pressure of civil society is growing towards governments opposed to this treaty: Italy, Slovenia, Croatia, the whole Nato, Russia, China, Israel, India, Pakistan North Korea and not-so-many others. With benefit from the very progressive position of Vatican state on the issue.

It is therefore in the interest of Trieste to urge the Italian and Slovenian Governments to come to terms with the ratification of the Treaty, already signed by almost all countries of southeast Mediterranean and Middle orient, even if in a war in between them.

So it is also in our interest that the new Treaty for the prohibition of nuclear weapons makes it possible to resume talks on the denuclearization of the Mediterranean, pre-established in Barcelona by the Euro-Mediterranean partnership since 1995. With the involvement of our Gulf, ethically and legally bound by the Peace Treaty to demilitarization and neutrality.


Alessandro Capuzzo, resident in Trieste, 64, retired. Active in the eco-pacifist movement from the ’80s. Member of the “Danilo Dolci” Peace Committee of Trieste and of IPRI-CCP (Italian Institute for Peace Research – Civil Corps of Peace) association founded by Alberto L’Abate.

This article originally appeared on Transcend Media Service (TMS) on 11 Mar 2019.

Anticopyright: Editorials and articles originated on TMS may be freely reprinted, disseminated, translated and used as background material, provided an acknowledgement and link to the source, TMS: To Demilitarize and Denuclearize Trieste, is included. Thank you.

If you enjoyed this article, please donate to TMS to join the growing list of TMS Supporters.

Share this article:

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a CC BY-NC 4.0 License.

Comments are closed.