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Democracy at the UN: 122 Nations Vote to Ban the Bomb

By Alice Slater*

NEW YORJ (IDN-INPS) - On July 7 2017, at a UN Conference mandated by the UN General Assembly to negotiate a treaty to prohibit nuclear weapons, the only weapons of mass destruction yet to be banned, 122 nations completed the job after three weeks, accompanied by a celebratory outburst of cheers, tears, and applause among hundreds of activists, government delegates, and experts, as well as survivors of the lethal nuclear bombing of Hiroshima and witnesses to the devastating, toxic nuclear-test explosions in the Pacific.

The new treaty outlaws any prohibited activities related to nuclear weapons, including use, threat to use, development, testing, production, manufacturing, acquiring, possession, stockpiling, transferring, receiving, stationing, installation, and deployment of nuclear weapons. It also bans states from lending assistance, which includes such prohibited acts as financing for their development and manufacture, engaging in military preparations and planning, and permitting the transit of nuclear weapons through territorial water or airspace.

NATO, OSCE Asked to Pursue Nuclear Disarmament in Europe

By Jutta Wolf

BERLIN (IDN | PNND) - Fifty Parliamentarians from 13 European countries have sent a letter today NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg and Chair of the OSCE Minister Sebastian Kurz, urging these two key European security organizations to pursue dialogue, détente and nuclear risk reduction in Europe.

The letter on July 14 also calls on NATO and OSCE (the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe) to support the multilateral process for nuclear disarmament through the Non-Proliferation Treaty and the United Nations. OSCE is the world's largest security-oriented intergovernmental organization. Its mandate includes issues such as arms control, promotion of human rights, freedom of the press, and fair elections.

Finally, Nuclear Weapons Are Outlawed

By Jayantha Dhanapala*

KANDY, Sri Lanka (IDN) – On July 7 2017, seventy two years after the most inhumanely destructive weapon was invented and used on hapless Hiroshima and Nagasaki, a Conference of the majority of member states in the United Nations decided – by a vote of 122 for; one abstention: and one against – to adopt a Treaty for the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons.

It had been a long journey from January 1946 when the newly established United Nations Organization, located temporarily in London, adopted its very first resolution calling for nuclear disarmament signifying the undisputed priority of this issue. Since then, at every session of the UN General Assembly, resolutions with various nuances on nuclear disarmament were adopted with varying majorities. [P 12]  SPANISH | JAPANESE TEXT VERSON PDF

A Landmark Achievement for Nuclear Disarmament

By Sergio Duarte, Ambassador, former High Representative of the UN for Disarmament Affairs*

UNITED NATIONS (IDN) - A large majority of the international community, together with governmental and non-governmental organizations and institutions, achieved an important milestone in the treatment of disarmament questions by concluding a landmark Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons. The instrument was adopted on July 7, 2017 by 122 votes in favor, 1 against (Netherlands) and 1 abstention (Singapore).

Between March 15 to 31 and June 17 to July 7 the United Nations Conference negotiated a legally binding instrument for the prohibition of nuclear weapons leading to their elimination, in accordance with the mandate contained in General Assembly of Resolution 71/258 of December 23 2016. Participants benefitted from several years of studies, proposals and initiatives taken by States, academic institutions and organizations of the civil society on means to achieve the complete elimination of nuclear weapons. [P 11]   | JAPANESE TEXT VERSON PDFSPANISH

Civil Society Rejoices at the New UN Treaty Marking the Beginning of the End of Nuclear Age

By Ramesh Jaura


UNITED NATIONS (IDN) – When the United Nations member states adopted on July 7, 2017 a legally-binding treaty banning nuclear weapons and prohibiting a full range of related activities, it was a historic and highly emotional moment not only for Ambassador Elayne Whyte Gómez of Costa Rica, president of the UN conference. It was also a moment of profound rejoicing for a diverse range of civil society organisations (CSOs).

Twenty-five years after UN Secretary-General Boutros Boutros-Ghali opened the doors for the CSOs and other non-governmental organisations (NGOs) to contribute to the success of the Earth Summit in June 1992 that stressed the inexorable link between environment and development, the CSOs have successfully exercised their 'soft power' to help usher in a world free of nuclear weapons. [P 10]  | JAPANESE TEXT VERSON PDFSPANISH

Faith Groups Urge Universal Adoption of UN Nuclear Ban Treaty

By Jamshed Baruah

 

UNITED NATIONS (IDN) – While welcoming the adoption of the United Nations Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons "as a vital step toward the goal of a world free from nuclear weapons", Faith Communities Concerned about Nuclear Weapons have in a 'public statement' called for its universal acceptance and implementation.

The Treaty, adopted on July 7, 2017 at the UN Headquarters in New York, lays out detailed provisions stipulating a comprehensive ban on the development, production, possession, stockpiling, testing, use or threat of use of nuclear weapons. It is the result of intensive negotiations at the UN involving more than 120 governments and many civil society representatives. [P 09] GERMANJAPANESE TEXT VERSON PDFSPANISH

'Combination of Reason and Heart' Results in UN Treaty Banning Nuclear Weapons

By Ramesh Jaura

UNITED NATIONS (IDN) – In what was a “historic” and a highly emotional moment at the United Nations, member states adopted on July 7, 2107 a legally-binding treaty prohibiting nuclear weapons.

"The world has been waiting for this legal norm for 70 years," since the use of the first atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki in August 1945 at the end of World War II, said Ambassador Elayne Whyte Gómez of Costa Rica, president of the UN conference to negotiate a legally-binding instrument to prohibit nuclear weapons.

"We feel emotional," she told a news conference at the UN Headquarters in New York, "because we are responding to the hopes and dreams of the present and future generations." [P 08] JAPANESE TEXT VERSON PDF | SPANISH

Conference Pleads for Nuclear Test Ban Treaty Becoming Law

By Ramesh Jaura

NEW YORK | VIENNA (IDN) – At a crucial point in time when the United Nations Conference to negotiate a legally binding instrument to prohibit nuclear weapons, leading towards their total elimination has submitted a draft treaty and the international community is focussed on the North Korean ICBM threat, an international conference has underlined the need for the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty (CTBT) becoming law without any further dithering.

Experts from around the world, joined by young professionals, attended the Science and Technology Conference of the Preparatory Commission for the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty Organization (CTBTO) from June 26 to June 30, 2017 in Austria's capital Vienna. [P 07]  JAPANESE TEXT VERSON PDF

Youth Determined to Push Through UN Nuclear Test Ban Treaty

By Ramesh Jaura

NEW YORK | VIENNA (IDN) – “As youth, we are the future leaders of the world, the ones who will inherit and live in the world left behind for us, and the bearers of the hopes and dreams for our children and their children after them," declared a group of young people who are members of the CTBTO Youth Group.

"Twenty years after the opening of the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty (CTBT) for signature, we regret that this Treaty, which would establish a legally binding, comprehensive prohibition on nuclear explosive testing, has yet to enter into force," said the Group in a joint statement. [P 06]  | JAPANESE TEXT VERSON PDF

Treaty Banning Nuclear Weapons Nearing Completion

By Tariq Rauf*

VIENNA (IDN) - On June 27, the second draft of the “Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons” was released at the United Nations in New York. Delegations from more than 130 States will now work to finalize the treaty text by July 7, 2017.

The United Nations Conference to Negotiate a Legally Binding Instrument to Prohibit Nuclear Weapons, Leading Towards their Total Elimination has been meeting at the UN in New York on March 27–31 and June 15–7 July 7. Ambassador Elayne Whyte Gómez of Costa Rica is the Conference President, who has done a masterful job in navigating through the competing and often contradictory positions of both States and civil society organizations (CSO) to produce a realistic and workable draft Treaty text.

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