Nuclear powers pledge not to use weapons on Central Asian nations

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Nuclear-weapon States signed the Protocol to the Treaty on a Nuclear-Weapon-Free Zone in Central Asia

Five nuclear powers: Russia, Great Britain, China, the United States and France  should without delay ratify the Protocol on security guarantees to the Treaty on a nuclear-free zone in Central Asia that they signed on Tuesday. UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon made this statement. According to him, this achievement has become “a concrete step” aimed at the creation of the first such zone in the Northern Hemisphere.

The United Nations Secretary-General welcomes the signing of the Protocol . The Protocol commits the nuclear-weapon States to respect the application of the Treaty in Central Asia as well as not to use or threaten to use nuclear weapons against the parties to the Treaty,” according to a UN statement. 

“When the Treaty entered into force on 21 March 2009, it created the world’s first nuclear-weapon-free zone located entirely in the Northern Hemisphere. The Secretary-General congratulates the five Central Asia States: Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan on their achievement today of the first concrete step towards theconsolidation of the zone. He hopes that the nuclear-weapon States ratify the Protocol without delay,” it says. “The Secretary-General reiterates his strong support for the further establishment of nuclear-weapon-free zones, which contribute to the strengthening of global norms against nuclear weapons to the benefit of non-proliferation, regional security and disarmament,” it adds.

It is remarkable that the protocol to the treaty has been signed today by all nuclear-weapon states simultaneously. This is the first such example in the world. 

There are four other treaties on nuclear-weapons-free zones - in Latin America and the Caribbean, the South Pacific, Southeast Asia and Africa. Mongolia's self-declared nuclear-free status has also been recognised through a United Nations General Assembly resolution.