On Sept. 30, Malaysia ratified the UN Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons. Malaysia was the 46th country to confirm the treaty, with Malta being the 45th. The treaty “enters into force” 90 days after the 50th country informs the UN that it has ratified the treaty.
According to the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons (ICAN), the entry into force means nuclear weapons will become completely illegal under international law, which will strengthen the stigma around nuclear weapons. ICAN explains, “Just like with chemical weapons and land mines, having the treaty in place will increase the pressure on companies and governments to ensure they are on the right side of the law, and of the public debate.”
ICAN says, “Hitting that 50-state mark is a huge achievement for our movement, but our work won’t be over. Making nuclear weapons illegal is the first step in our plan to eliminate nuclear weapons for good, and once it happens our work will enter a new phase.”