More than 70 years after the world witnessed the devastating power of nuclear weapons, a
global treaty has been approved to ban the bombs, a move that supporters hope will lead
to the eventual elimination of all nuclear arms. . . .
"It's a prohibition in line with other prohibitions on weapons of mass destruction,"
said Beatrice Fihn at the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons in Geneva.
"We banned biological weapons 45 years ago, we banned chemical weapons 25 years ago, and
today we are banning nuclear weapons." Within two years the treaty could have the
50-state ratifications that it needs to enter into international law, she said. . . .
Under the new treaty, signatory states must agree not to develop, test, manufacture or
possess nuclear weapons, or threaten to use them, or allow any nuclear arms to be
stationed on their territory. . . .
The new treaty reflects a frustration among non-nuclear states that the NPT has not worked as hoped.
Non-Proliferation Treaty (July 1, 1968)
- Forbids the five member states with nuclear weapons from transferring them to any other state
- Forbids member states without nuclear weapons from developing or aquiring them
- Provides assurance through the application of international safeguards that peaceful nuclear energy in NNWS will not be diverted to nuclear weapons or other nuclear explosive devices
- Facilitates access to peaceful uses of nuclear energy for all NNWS under international safeguards
- Commits all member states to pursue good faith negotiations toward ending the nuclear arms race and achieving nuclear disarmament.
[The difference today is that the United States is actively considering the use of
nuclear weapons in a first-strike capacity involving non-nuclear threats.--Scott Ritter, "Trump Nuke Plan Resets the Doomsday Clock,"
theamericanconservative.com, February 1, 2018]
[The TPNW is a
significant milestone in the long and global effort to achieve a world free from nuclear
weapons. The 86 countries that have signed so far are also signatories to the NPT -
which also calls for nuclear disarmament - but signed on to the TPNW in apparent
frustration over what they consider inadequate progress by the nuclear-armed states in
fulfilling their NPT obligations.--Hans Kristensen and Matt Korda, "The Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons Enters Into Force
Today," Federation of American Scientists, January 22, 2021