Following last week’s announcement from Palestine, Venezuela this week joined six other ratifying countries in formally endorsing the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons.
A statement released by the Venezuelan Ministry of Communication said, “On Tuesday, the Permanent Representative of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela to the United Nations, Samuel Moncada, presented the instrument of ratification of the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons to the UN Office of Legal Affairs, signed by the President of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela, Nicolás Maduro Moros.”
Noting that the TPNW is the biggest development in recent decades in matters of disarmament with direct implications for the maintenance of global peace and security, Ambassador Moncada said, “For our country, the threat of use or the use of nuclear weapons is unjustifiable, illegal and immoral. We therefore believe that the use of nuclear weapons represents a flagrant violation of international law and international humanitarian law, which in turn constitutes a war crime, in accordance with the provisions of the Rome Statute.”
The Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons was negotiated at the UN in New York in 2017 and approved on the 7th of July by 122 countries. The treaty enters into force when the 50th country delivers its instrument of ratification to the UN Office of Legal Affairs. So far no nuclear weapon state has shown any signs of supporting the treaty, but some impact is already being felt in the financing of nuclear weapons as evidenced by the latest Don’t Bank on the Bomb report which shows that financial institutions investing in nuclear weapon producers have dropped by 10%.
Venezuela becomes the fourth country in Latin America and the Caribbean to ratify the treaty after Guyana, Mexico and Cuba. A full list is available on the ICAN website here.