UN Secretary-General António Guterres on Thursday again urged eight key countries which have not yet signed or ratified the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty (CTBT), to do so without delay.

His request came in remarks to the latest conference to promote the treaty’s entry into force, which were delivered by UN High Representative for Disarmament Affairs, Izumi Nakamitsu.

Near universal acceptance

The CTBT was adopted in 1996 and has been signed by 185 countries, and ratified by 170 of them, including three nuclear weapons-holding States: France, Russia and the United Kingdom.

However, for the Treaty to enter into force, it must be signed and ratified by 44 specific nuclear technology holder countrieseight of which have yet to ratify the Treaty: China, Egypt, India, Iran, Israel, the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Pakistan and the United States.

The last Annex 2 State to ratify the Treaty was Indonesia on 6 February 2012.

The UN Secretary-General stated that a prohibition on nuclear testing is an essential element of a nuclear weapons-free world.

The CTBThas created an almost universally adopted norm against the testing of nuclear weapons,” he added.

“Given its necessity and readiness, it is both disappointing and frustrating that the Treaty has not yet entered into force.

We all know the reason for this, the eight remaining Annex II States whose ratifications are required for the Treaty’s entry-into-force,” he said.

“As a result, a critical element of our collective security cannot be fully operationalized.

I repeat my call to these States to sign and ratify the CTBT as soon as possible.

I also call on all other States that have not yet signed or ratified the treaty to do so without delay”, according UN News.

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