The four members of the NZ delegation who attended the U.N. conference in New York have just touched down in NZ! After this past month of intense negotiations leading up to a unprecedented Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons, it’s time for them to reflect on this historic moment. Dr Lyndon Burford makes a clear statement on the groundbreaking character of the Treaty: you can listen to his interview for Radio New Zealand here and his podcast for bfm95 here.
This Treaty puts an end to a 20-year-old international deadlock in terms of nuclear disarmament, filling the loopholes of the NPT by explicitly stating the ban on nuclear weapons in international law. It creates a legal norm that will put tremendous pressure on nuclear-armed States and umbrella States to withdraw their support for the nuclear deterrence paradigm: the only appropriate behavior when it comes to those weapons is to get rid of them.
The Treaty will open for ratification on the 20th of September, 2017.