The Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons (NPWT) entered into force on January 22. United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres hailed it as a strong demonstration of support for the multilateral nuclear disarmament effort.
Former US Secretary of Defense William Perry has proposed that the United States be the first nuclear weapon nation to sign up to it. The world press highlighted the fact that it was the first instrument to ban nuclear weapons ever adopted.
Civil society organizations celebrated its advent as a historic step to rid the world of the deadliest and most inhumane means of destruction, while other commentators noted strong opposition from nuclear weapon owners to the new instrument. . Advocates of the TPAN understand that there is still a long way to go before the Treaty produces concrete results, but its entry into force is without doubt an important step.
The TPAN reinforces the non-proliferation commitments contained in the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT) and establishes the principle that nuclear weapons are not acceptable according to the standards on which relations between countries are based. It is not directed against any particular nation. It does not advocate unilateral disarmament either, as it does not exclude the possibility of consultations between the possessors to guarantee mutual security during the disarmament process.
The possession of nuclear weapons is not justified. If this is the case, all nations would have a valid case for acquiring such weapons. Its use would liquidate the living conditions in the world. The phrase commonly repeated by representatives of nuclear countries that “we will maintain our nuclear weapons as long as these weapons exist” means refusal to consider reasonable means of achieving the stated goal of a nuclear-weapon-free world. , replacing arrogance and threat by means of international friendliness. Instead of adopting an attitude of blind and angry hostility against the TPAN, the owners of these weapons should engage constructively with the Treaty.
It is obvious that TPAN will not be able to achieve its objective without the good faith assistance of the current nuclear countries. Opinion polls around the world show that there is strong popular support for the elimination of nuclear weapons, regardless of national political systems. Public support for nuclear disarmament can only grow as frustration grows with the continuation of the arms race and the lack of concrete progress.
The 122 countries that negotiated the TPAN set an important example by doing exactly what Article VI of the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT) requires. The closest opportunity to complete the multilateral process for the elimination of atomic weapons is the next NPT Review Conference, scheduled for August this year.
Brazil participated actively in the negotiations that led to the adoption of the TPAN – 81 countries have already signed it, and our country was the first to do so. It is necessary to conclude affirmatively the ratification process which is under consideration in the National Congress, in accordance with the vocation of peace and the peaceful use of nuclear energy enshrined in our Constitution and in our constant international activity.