Press Release
February 1, 2021

Senate OKs resolution to ratify treaty banning use of nuclear weapons

The Senate today adopted a resolution expressing its concurrence to the ratification of a treaty on the prohibition of nuclear weapons (TPNW). Proposed Senate Resolution 620, introduced and sponsored by Sen. Aquilino "Koko" Pimentel III, was unanimously adopted with 23 votes. The resolution was co-sponsored by Sen. Risa Hontiveros and all other senators.

"The Treaty further reinforces commitments against the use, threat of use, development, production, manufacture, acquisition, possession, stockpiling, transfer, stationing, or installation of nuclear weapons," Pimentel, chairman of the Committee on Foreign Relations, said.

He said highlights of the treaty include the prohibition to:

  • Develop, test, produce, manufacture, otherwise acquire, possess or stockpile nuclear weapons or other nuclear explosive devices;

  • Transfer to any recipient whatsoever nuclear weapons or other nuclear explosive devices or control over such weapons or explosive devices directly or indirectly;

  • Receive the transfer of or control over nuclear weapons or other nuclear explosive devices directly or indirectly;

  • Use or threaten to use nuclear weapons or other nuclear explosive devices;

  • Assist, encourage or induce, in any way, anyone to engage in any activity prohibited to a State Party under this Treaty;

  • Seek or receive any assistance, in any way, from anyone to engage in any activity prohibited under this Treaty; and

  • Allow any stationing, installation or deployment of any nuclear weapons or other nuclear explosive devices in its territory or at any place under its jurisdiction or control.

According to Pimentel, the treaty is the "first globally applicable multilateral agreement to comprehensively prohibit nuclear weapons on the basis of international humanitarian law."

He said, the Philippines is among the first states to sign the treaty, along with other 52 countries. As a signatory to the treaty, he said the Philippines has much to gain, including the TPNW's provisions on victim assistance and environmental remediation.

He cited an environmental research that warned of a global climate cooling capable of adversely affecting food production for years even with a "limited regional nuclear war."

The same research warned that a large-scale nuclear war could "create ice-age like conditions that might eliminate most of the human race."

"Nuclear weapons do not discriminate. We cannot afford another nuclear arms race. The Hiroshima and Nagasaki bombings in Japan are horrors that should never be repeated," Pimentel stressed.

For her part, Hontiveros said nuclear weapons have "humanitarian and environmental consequences that span decades and cross generations."

"The TPNW is groundbreaking and a step in the direction of creating an international norm of conduct. With 86 nations signing it and 52 so far ratifying it - perhaps we will be the 53rd - the collective voice of humanity is clear: nuclear weapons should be banned forever, as we have banned landmines and biological and chemical weapons," she said.

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