The Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons came into effect on Friday, but milestones have been undermined by the lack of signatures from the world’s major nuclear-weapon states.
Despite the disappearance of participants, this opportunity was characterized by praise from the United Nations and Pope Francis.
“This treaty is an important step towards the goal of a world free of nuclear weapons and strongly supports a multilateral approach to nuclear disarmament,” UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said in a statement. ..
He praised the “multilateral nuclear disarmament treaty for the first time in more than 20 years” and called for “all nations working together to realize this ambition to promote common security and collective security.”
The treaty seeks to ban the use, development, production, testing, stationing, stockpiling and threats of nuclear weapons.
Pope Francis foretold the enactment of a treaty during his general audience on Wednesday.
“This is the first legally binding international document to explicitly ban these weapons, and their indiscriminate use affects a huge number of people in a short period of time and is environmentally long-term. It will cause great damage, “said the Pope.
“I urge all nations and all to make decisive efforts to promote the conditions needed for a world free of nuclear weapons and to contribute to the development of peace and multilateral cooperation that mankind needs today. I recommend it. “
Peter Mauer, President of the International Committee of the Red Cross, repeated these feelings.
“Today is a victory for our common humanity. Let’s capture that moment and implement the treaty towards the goal of a world free of nuclear weapons,” he said in a statement.
By late October, 50 countries had ratified the treaty. It was initially adopted by 122 countries at the UN General Assembly in 2017, but allowed it to take effect on Friday, 90 days after the 50th signing.
Anti-nuclear activists still hope that by condemning the nuclear program and challenging the spirit of the status quo, the treaty will be more than symbolic, even without the support of the world’s largest nuclear powers.
There are a total of nine nuclear-armed nations, with the United States and Russia possessing 90 percent of such weapons. Others are China, France, Great Britain, India, Pakistan, Israel and North Korea.
Most nuclear-weapon states claim that weapons exist merely as a deterrent, and those who refuse to sign this treaty continue to commit to the previous non-proliferation treaty, which seeks to prevent the spread of nuclear weapons. It states.
The Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons was drafted by the initiative of the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons (ICAN), an NGO that won the 2017 Nobel Peace Prize.
Japan, the only country targeted by nuclear weapons, has so far refused to sign the treaty, saying its effectiveness is questionable without the participation of the world’s nuclear-weapon states.