Draft Text Released by UN for Treaty Prohibiting Nuclear Weapons

Posted: 22nd May 2017

Just a few minutes ago at the United Nations in Geneva, the draft text for a treaty prohibiting nuclear weapons was presented by the President of the negotiations, Ambassador Elayne Whyte of Costa Rica.

The draft is based on the discussions and inputs made at the first session of the conference to negotiate such treaty held on 27-31 March 2017.

ICAN welcomes the release of a draft treaty to ban nuclear weapons as an essential milestone in the years-long effort to ban these indiscriminate weapons of mass destruction because of their inhumane and catastrophic impacts. Once adopted, the treaty will constitute an important step towards their eventual elimination.

The draft language provides a good basis for a strong, categorical prohibition of nuclear weapons. The President of the negotiations, Ambassador Elayne Whyte has captured many key elements proposed during the first negotiating session in March. 



We expect more debate over the articles and provisions in the text as this process moves forward and ICAN will be advocating to ensure the strongest possible treaty. We are confident that a treaty prohibiting nuclear weapons can be agreed and adopted by July 7.

ICAN is pleased to see that the prohibition is rooted in humanitarian principles and that it builds on previous prohibitions of unacceptable weapons, such as the bans on biological and chemical weapons, landmines and cluster munitions.

ICAN campaigners and supporters all over the world have been working so hard for the last years on this treaty, and it’s a pretty cool feeling to finally see the text on paper. But this isn’t the final treaty text, we will now work with all governments and international organisations to ensure that the negotiations conclude with a strong, robust prohibition on nuclear weapons.

Do you want to support the work to ban nuclear weapons? Make a donation towards our work to achieve a treaty by 7 July.  

Beatrice Fihn
Executive Director
International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons


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