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Pakistan Not Signatory to Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons

by Newsweek Pakistan

File photo. Behrouz Mehri—AFP

Foreign Office clarifies Treaty was negotiated outside established U.N. disarmament negotiating forums and did not include any nuclear armed states

Pakistan on Friday clarified that it is not bound by any obligations enshrined in the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons, adding that it “neither forms a part of, nor contributes to the development of customary international law in any manner.”

In a statement, the Foreign Office noted that the Treaty, adopted in July 2017, was negotiated outside the established U.N. disarmament negotiating forums. It said that no nuclear-armed state had participated in the negotiations, adding that the “legitimate interests” of all stakeholders were not duly considered. “Many non-nuclear armed states have also refrained from becoming parties to the Treaty,” it added.

“The United Nations General Assembly, at its first special session devoted to nuclear disarmament in 1978, had agreed by consensus that in the adoption of disarmament measures, the right of each state to security should be kept in mind, and at each stage of the disarmament process the objective would be undiminished security for all states at the lowest possible level of armaments and military forces,” read the statement.

It stressed that Pakistan believes the U.N.’s objective could only be achieved as a cooperative and universally agreed undertaking, through a consensus-based process involving all relevant stakeholders, which results in equal and undiminished security for all states. “It is indispensable for any initiative on nuclear disarmament to take into account the vital security considerations of each and every state,” it added.

The U.N. Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons has thus far been ratified by 50 countries, including Austria, Ireland, Mexico, New Zealand, South Africa, Nigeria, and Thailand. It calls for a complete ban on all weapons with indiscriminate and inhumane effects, including anti-personnel landmines, cluster munitions, biological and chemical weapons.

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