Philippines: Pax Christi Pilipinas tells government to sign the nuclear weapons ban treaty
from Pax Christi Pilipinas
Pax Christi-Pilipinas believes that the continued existence of nuclear weapons causes insecurity among states which in turn fuels the need to possess them. Nuclear weapons, whether used or not, have humanitarian consequences. They are indiscriminate weapons, killing innocent civilians. A war fought using just 5 per cent of the total global stockpile would render this planet uninhabitable. Detonation will also cause climate disruption & nuclear famine. Smoke and dust produced by a nuclear war would cause the earth’s temperature to drop. It will threaten our food supply as farms, rivers, forests and marine life will be contaminated by nuclear poison.
Moreover, nuclear weapons programs divert public funds from vital services such as health, education and development assistance.
Hence, Pax Christi-Pilipinas lauds the adoption of a treaty in the United Nations on 7 July 2017 prohibiting nuclear weapons. Such treaty prohibits nations from developing, testing, producing, manufacturing, transferring, possessing, stockpiling, using or threatening to use nuclear weapons. It prohibits nations from assisting, encouraging or inducing anyone to engage in any of those activities.
Such landmark treaty gives us hope. We, therefore call on the Philippine government and our neighboring countries in the ASEAN region and South Asia to sign the treaty on 20 September 2017and ratify it in due course. As Pax Christi International suggested, “early support for the treaty by a solid majority is a constructive demonstration that all states share the obligation to eliminate nuclear weapons under international law.”
Thus, we strongly encourage the Philippines and countries of ASEAN and South Asia to sign the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons during the high-level segment of the General Assembly or soon thereafter. The Philippines and Asia must do their part with other nations in this historic step towards eliminating nuclear weapons.