The International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons (ICAN), Nobel Peace Laureate 2017, congratulates Saint Vincent and the Grenadines on its ratification of the UN Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons on 31 July 2019. This reflects the Caribbean nation’s longstanding commitment to a nuclear-weapon-free world.
Saint Vincent and the Grenadines is the third member State of the Caribbean Community, or CARICOM, to ratify the Treaty, after Guyana and Saint Lucia. Two CARICOM member States have also signed (but not yet ratified) the Treaty: Jamaica and Antigua and Barbuda.
Twelve CARICOM member States voted in favour of the Treaty’s adoption at the United Nations on 7 July 2017: Antigua and Barbuda, the Bahamas, Belize, Grenada, Guyana, Haiti, Jamaica, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Suriname, and Trinidad and Tobago.
CARICOM has described the Treaty as a reflection of the “strong international support for a permanent end to the threat posed by nuclear arms”. In October 2018, CARICOM announced that more of its member States are expected to sign and ratify the Treaty “in short order, as we seek to contribute to the Treaty’s early entry into force and to its universal adherence”.
In June 2019, a group of 10 CARICOM member States met in Georgetown, Guyana, and issued a statement in support of the Treaty: “Caribbean states have to maintain the leadership role they played in the negotiation with action by adding their voice, their vote and their signature and/or ratification to the global effort to strengthen the norm against these inhumane weapons and to increase their stigmatization.”
A number of CARICOM member States have indicated their intention to participate in a high-level signature and ratification ceremony (details attached) for the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons to be held in New York on 26 September 2019, on the occasion of the International Day for the Total Elimination of Nuclear Weapons.