Today (22 January), the Greens/EFA group in the European Parliament celebrates the entry into force of the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons, which bans the most destructive class of weapons of mass destruction. The Greens/EFA congratulate the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons (ICAN) and its member organizations for having shown that civil society can play an essential role in taking on the most pressing challenges for global security and for having made possible this historic milestone of international law. EU Member States Austria, Ireland and Malta already signed the treaty and the Greens/EFA call on all other EU member states to follow. Today, in the EU, Belgium, the Netherlands, Germany and Italy still host US nuclear weapons. France possesses 300 nuclear weapons, with the highest percentage world-wide of its arsenal on alert.
Mounir Satouri MEP, Greens/EFA member of the Security and Defense sub-committee, comments:
“We congratulate ICAN and all those who fought alongside us for so long towards a world free from nuclear weapons. This Treaty provides a new road and framework to achieve the elimination of nuclear weapons and to make the world a safer place. Today we celebrate this achievement, which brings a world free from the menace of nuclear devastation, within our reach.
"This milestone should be the beginning of discussions leading to a European continent completely free from weapons of mass destruction, including Russian withdrawal and disarmament, to serve our common security interests, and in particular those of Central and Eastern European countries. The Greens/EFA group call on all EU Member States to follow the examples of Austria, Ireland and Malta and to sign and ratify this treaty without delay. The EU should become a regional observer organisation at the Treaty’s first meeting of State-Parties. All financial institutions must cease funding the production and maintenance of nuclear arsenals. We call on France to comply with its obligation under the nuclear non-proliferation treaty to faithfully negotiate nuclear disarmament, which means adhering to the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons.”