No nuclear powers have signed up to treaty, but supporters hope it’s start of something bigger
Tiny Honduras has become the fiftieth nation to ratify a UN ban on nuclear weapons, allowing the United Nations to officially ratify a treaty banning nuclear weapons.
A spokesperson for UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres described the ‘historic’ moment as:
the culmination of a worldwide movement to draw attention to the catastrophic humanitarian consequences of any use of nuclear weapons.
It represents a meaningful commitment towards the total elimination of nuclear weapons, which remains the highest disarmament priority of the United Nations.
No nuclear powers have signed up to the treaty, but Peter Maurer of the International Committee of the Red Cross welcomed it:
Today is a victory for humanity, and a promise of a safer future.
More than eighty states have signed the treaty, but not all have yet formally ratified it. It forbids using, developing, producing, stationing, stockpiling or threatening to use nuclear weapons.
Campaigners hope that its ratificiation will stigmatise the possession of such weapons sufficiently to pressure nuclear-armed states to reduce or eliminate their stockpiles, while ICAN (International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons) said it now expects companies end production of the weapons and financial institutions to stop investing in such companies.
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