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NEW YORK, 29 August 2019 - Kazakhstan has deposited with the United Nations Secretariat the ratification instrument to the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons (TPNW). The ceremony took place on the International Day against Nuclear Tests. This year, the UN officially commemorates the Tenth Anniversary of the Day.
The event was attended by representatives of the United Nations and the international movement ICAN, which is a coalition of more than 500 non-governmental organizations from 103 countries committed to banning nuclear weapons. They thanked Kazakhstan for its strong commitment and leadership in nuclear disarmament.
Handing over the document to the depository, the Permanent Representative of Kazakhstan to the United Nations H.E. Mr. Kairat Umarov noted that this event was another important practical contribution of Kazakhstan to the global efforts to build a world free of nuclear weapons.
The country where the Soviet atomic bomb was first tested exactly 70 years ago, today has become the 26th State Party, making one step closer the prospect of the entry into force of the historic Treaty, which establishes a legal ban on nuclear weapons.
Kazakhstan had participated actively in the elaboration and adoption of the Treaty. Its main provisions are in line with the principled position of Kazakhstan, which has taken an ambitious path of becoming a leader in nuclear disarmament and non-proliferation after being a one-time holder of the world's fourth nuclear arsenal.
Kazakhstan’s continued anti-nuclear efforts are guided by the fundamental initiative of the country's First President Nursultan Nazarbayev, to achieve a nuclear-weapon-free world by 2045, the UN's centenary. The adoption therefore of the Nuclear Ban Treaty is intended to be an important milestone in the history of the struggle to eliminate nuclear weapons.
It is stipulated that ratification by 50 states is necessary for the Treaty to enter into force. Ambassador Umarov at the ceremony of ratification remarked, “if Bolivia on 6 August, closed the first half of the necessary ratification, then Kazakhstan, on the occasion of the observance of the International Day against Nuclear Tests, opens the second half. This should inspire all those who care about the safe future of all humankind to take similar actions.”
Those gathered at the ceremony observed a one-minute silence in memory of and to honour the victims of nuclear tests. “Our action is also our tribute to all those who have suffered from the consequences of the use of nuclear weapons. Our common task is to prevent the recurrence of such tragedies,” underscored Kairat Umarov.
Note: The Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons was adopted on 7 July 2017 with the support of 122 UN Member States. It was the outcome of two sessions of the UN Conference to negotiate a legally binding instrument to prohibit nuclear weapons, that would lead towards their total elimination. The Conference took place in March and June-July 2017 in New York.
The deliberations were open to all UN Member States. However, nine de facto and de jure nuclear weapons possessing states and their allies boycotted these talks.
The TPNW was opened for signature on 20 September 2017 during the 72nd session of the UN General Assembly in New York. The Treaty will enter into force 90 days after 50 Member States have ratified it. To date, 70 states have signed the Treaty, 26 of which have already ratified the document.
Kazakhstan became the 57th signatory state of the TPNW (on 2 March 2018) and the 26th state to ratify the Treaty (deposited today, on August 29, 2019).