The Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons (Tian) enters into force on January 22. An important moment since, from the point of view of international law, the atomic bomb will henceforth be banned, as are other weapons of mass destruction (bacteriological or chemical). In reality, pacifists and supporters of disarmament are still mobilized (read the box opposite), because only a few dozen States have ratified the text, but no power holding the bomb (United States, Russia, China, France, United Kingdom, India, Pakistan, North Korea, Israel) or any country where these weapons are stationed because of their NATO membership (Turkey, Belgium, Italy, Germany, etc.).
Ican received the Nobel Peace Prize in October 2017
This international agreement is the result of a long battle. It was adopted by 122 States at the United Nations (UN) on July 7, 2017. Since then, the General Secretariat of the United Nations and certain countries, particularly in the southern hemisphere, where we has no atomic power, are mobilized. The International Campaign for the Abolition of Nuclear Weapons (Ican), a collective of organizations and citizens, even received the Nobel Peace Prize in October 2017. These efforts paid off. Today, it has been signed by 86 states and ratified by 51 of them.
This treaty completes the disarmament system. In fact, since 1970, there has been a non-proliferation treaty (NPT) which allows nuclear powers to keep the A bomb, while committing ” in good faith ” to work to reduce their arsenals. The other countries having ratified the text, they are prohibited from developing the bomb.
The Tian no longer distinguishes between atomic and non-atomic powers. The bomb is forbidden to all. Even if France, the United Kingdom, the United States or China do not ratify the text, they will put obstacles in their way. The signatory countries could reduce their cooperation or engagement in scientific or university programs that are part of nuclear weapons programs. However, some of the signatory countries are members of the EU, such as Austria or Ireland. From this Friday, the pacifists have one more lever to advance their cause.