The Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons enters into force

Reference Number: PR210133, Press Release Issue Date: Jan 22, 2021
Today, the international community is celebrating the entry into force of the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons (TPNW). Malta ratified the Treaty on 21 September 2020, and was among the first fifty states to do so, thereby enabling its entry into force.

This is the first legally binding international agreement to prohibit signatory states from developing, testing, producing, stockpiling, stationing, transferring, and using or threatening to use nuclear arms.

In a virtual address during a commemorative event of the United Nations, Minister for Foreign and European Affairs Evarist Bartolo praised this historic moment and reiterated Malta’s firm commitment to achieving prosperity through peace. He congratulated all state parties to the Treaty for conveying a strong political message of hope to future generations.

Recalling the tragic loss of hundreds of thousands of lives in the 1945 Hiroshima and Nagasaki nuclear bombings and the devastating aftermath, he also spoke of the long-term damage resulting from nuclear testing on humans and the environment. The TPNW not only seeks to remedy all this, but also to strengthen the political norms and legal framework against nuclear weapons.

The Minister concluded that all states ratifying the TPNW have a responsibility to build on this collective effort and work with determination to promote the conditions necessary for a world without nuclear weapons.

Pope Francis and other international leaders welcomed the entry into force of this Treaty, which comes at a critical juncture following the termination of several other disarmament-related agreements.