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Making nuke ban conditions legally binding?

June 28, 2017

New draft of nuclear ban treaty submitted



A second draft of a legally binding nuclear ban treaty has been presented to negotiators at a UN conference in New York.

The chair of the negotiations, Costa Rican ambassador Elayne Whyte Gomez, submitted the draft on Tuesday as the basis for further discussions before the talks are due to end on July 7th.

The draft text shows a procedure toward abolishing nuclear weapons, based on discussions in the second round of the negotiations held this month.

The draft says any nuclear-armed state looking to join the treaty "shall immediately remove from operational status its nuclear weapon systems and destroy as soon as possible any nuclear weapons or nuclear explosive devices it owns, possesses, or controls."
The draft also calls on states choosing to join the treaty to submit a time-bound plan for the verifiable and irreversible destruction of its nuclear weapons within 60 days after declaring that they will remove their nuclear arsenals.

Whyte said the draft incorporates expressions that indicate endeavors to make the legal provisions binding and to clarify political desires.

The preamble of the new draft text says state parties to this treaty are "mindful of the unacceptable suffering of and harm" of the atomic bomb survivors, or Hibakusha, as well as "those affected by the testing of nuclear weapons."

The draft also recognizes efforts for the total elimination of nuclear weapons by the Hibakusha as well as international organizations.

The UN General Assembly decided last year to hold the UN conference at the request of non-nuclear powers.

Nuclear powers as well as Japan and other countries relying on nuclear deterrence are not taking part in the talks.


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