Negotiations resume on nuclear weapon ban

June 16, 2017

On 15 June, a majority of the world’s governments resumed negotiations at the United Nations on a treaty to prohibit nuclear weapons. Many expressed their hope to conclude the landmark international agreement by 7 July.

ICAN is confident that – by working together in a spirit of cooperation, with determination and courage – the negotiating states can achieve a strong, categorical ban on the ultimate weapons of mass destruction.

Anything less than a categorical ban would fail to meet the expectations of the world’s peoples, who yearn for, and have long championed, the total elimination of these abhorrent, immoral weapons.

The treaty text, ICAN believes, must firmly convey our full and unequivocal rejection of nuclear weapons, and be rooted deeply in humanitarian principles. Safeguarding humanity, after all, is the treaty’s paramount objective.

Its prohibitions must properly capture all activities that might render the goal of nuclear disarmament more distant, or contribute in any way to preparations for the use of these patently unacceptable weapons.

Any states parties that possess nuclear weapons must agree to destroy their stockpiles in a time-bound, verifiable manner. And the treaty’s provisions on victim assistance and environmental remediation must meet prevailing standards.

We live in increasingly uncertain and dangerous times. The spectre of nuclear war looms large once more. Success in the weeks ahead is our only option. Public expectations are high. Citizens everywhere are watching, waiting, hoping.

We are convinced that this new global accord will prove transformative. Over the coming years, ICAN will work tirelessly to promote its universalization and full implementation. In the words of Setsuko Thurlow – a Hiroshima survivor and disarmament hero – the treaty can, and will, change the world.



  • aiweiwei

    “Let’s ban nuclear weapons completely and unconditionally.”

    Ai Weiwei Artist and activist

  • sheen

    “If Gandhi and Martin Luther King Jr were alive today, they would be part of ICAN.”

    Martin Sheen Actor and activist

  • bankimoon

    “I salute ICAN for working with such commitment and creativity.”

    Ban Ki-moon Former UN chief

  • yokoono

    “We can do it together. With your help, our voice will be made still stronger. Imagine peace.”

    Yoko Ono Artist

  • jodywilliams

    “Governments say a nuclear weapons ban is unlikely. Don’t believe it. They said the same about a mine ban treaty.”

    Jody Williams Nobel laureate

  • desmondtutu

    “With your support, we can take ICAN its full distance – all the way to zero nuclear weapons.”

    Desmond Tutu Nobel laureate

  • herbiehancock

    “Because I cannot tolerate these appalling weapons, I whole-heartedly support ICAN.”

    Herbie Hancock Jazz musician

  • dalailama

    “I can imagine a world without nuclear weapons, and I support ICAN.”

    Dalai Lama Nobel laureate