Nuclear disarmament expert selected to stand for Greens in Hampstead and Kilburn

Dr Rebecca Johnson with Green Party deputy leader Shahrar Ali

Dr Rebecca Johnson with Green Party deputy leader Shahrar Ali - Credit: Archant

An internationally-recognised expert on nuclear disarmament and non-proliferation, with more than 30 years experience in the field, has been selected to stand for the Green Party in Hampstead and Kilburn.

Camden and Brent Green Parties announced Dr Rebecca Johnson will contest the seat on Monday and campaign to become the constituency’s next MP at the general election in May.

The Greens are the fourth party to select a parliamentary candidate for the hotly contested seat, as the Conservatives, Labour and Liberal Democrats have already had contenders in place for more than a year.

Dr Johnson said: “I got to know this constituency when I volunteered for Glenda Jackson’s campaign in 1992.

“I’ve been talking to local people in recent weeks, and have heard them highlight the need for more affordable housing, finding environmentally sustainable alternatives to the dam nonsense that will protect both Hampstead Heath and homes from flooding, and defending local businesses and homes against the folly of High Speed 2, while supporting the renationalisation of our rail services, on which so many of us depend.

“In standing for the Greens, I will work for these goals and a raft of other policies to protect our environment and secure fair distribution of resources to help all of London’s communities, especially our most disadvantaged citizens.”

Dr Johnson holds a PhD from the London School of Economics and is executive director of the Acronym Institute for Disarmament Diplomacy.

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She is vice president of the Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament, a fellow of the Royal Society of Arts, works on international security with the UN and is co-chair of left-of-centre pressure group Compass Greens.

A frequent commentator on BBC and CNN, she has written many reports and articles on security, disarmament, diplomacy and civil society, including the nuclear non-proliferation regime and fallacies of nuclear deterrence.

She lives in Hackney, after moving from Kilburn, but has continued to cycle to Hampstead Heath where she loves to walk and swim.

Natalie Bennett, Green Party Leader and candidate for the neighbouring Holborn and St Pancras constituency, said: “Throughout Camden voters are looking for a credible alternative to the three business-as-usual parties, and Rebecca will be a brilliant new Green voice for Hampstead and Kilburn.”

Dr Johnson beat Brent Green Party’s Scott Bartle and Islington Green Party’s Benali Hamdache to take the nomination.

The party secured 1.4 per cent of the vote in Hampstead and Kilburn at the last general election, which was won by Labour MP Glenda Jackson with a margin of just 42 votes.

At the local elections last May the Greens took 15.69 per cent of the vote in Camden, up from 10.9 per cent in 2010.