Friday, 15 December, 2017

122 countries adopt treaty banning nukes

UN website UN website
Garry Little | 09 July, 2017, 00:08

A total of 122 countries gave their blessing to the unprecedented global initiative after months of negotiations at the United Nations, with the Netherlands opposed and Singapore abstaining.

The DFA said the Philippine delegation participated in the talks guided by a provision of the Philippine Constitution prohibiting nuclear weapons in Philippine territory.

The U.N. ambassadors for the United Kingdom and France gave slightly different reasons for opposing the treaty, with the former saying that the treaty "would not lead to effective progress on nuclear disarmament" and the latter saying that nuclear weapons were still necessary for security given "the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction".

"This treaty is the capstone of the global disarmament architecture", Philippine representative to the UN Teodoro Locsin Jr. said after the conference that adopted the treaty in NY on Friday.

In a joint press statement, the Permanent Representatives of the US, UK and France in the UN Security Council, said they "have not taken part in the negotiation of the treaty and do not intend to sign, ratify or ever become party to it..."

The negotiations to legally ban nuclear weapons have been going on for over 20 years. All nuclear armed states - the U.S., Russia, U.K., China, India, France, Pakistan, North Korea and Israel - boycotted negotiations leading up to the vote, essentially leaving the measure dead on arrival in terms of efficacy.

'The treaty is a clear indication that the majority of the world's countries no longer accept nuclear weapons'. In this respect, a treaty banning nuclear weapons risks affecting the security of the Euro-Atlantic region and global stability.

According to the text of the Treaty, States signatories undertake never to develop and not to possess nuclear weapons.

It also bans any transfer or use of nuclear weapons or nuclear explosive devices - and the threat to use such weapons.

Opened for signature in 1968, the Non-Proliferation Treaty entered into force in 1970.

The nuclear powers claim that their arsenal serves as a deterrent against a possible nuclear attack, and remind us that they remain committed to it by the nuclear non-proliferation treaty (NPT). "There is nothing I want more for my family than a world with no nuclear weapons, but we have to be realistic".

His supporters hope that the treaty will increase pressure on the nuclear States to take disarmament more seriously.

Former U.S. Defense Secretary William Perry said the ban offers "a vision of a safer world", and also called on the world's nuclear nations to extend the New START treaty and bring into force the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty outlawing nuclear tests. This was reported on the website of the United Nations.

The U.S.is preoccupied with convincing United Nations members to take collective action against Pyongyang after it performed its first successful ICBM test launch on July 4. Moscow's security policy allows for the use of nuclear weapons "in response to the use of nuclear and other types of weapons of mass destruction against it and/or its allies, as well as in the event of aggression against the Russian Federation with the use of conventional weapons when the very existence of the state is in jeopardy".

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