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It’s time for Japan to step up and join nuclear ban treaty

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Three years ago to the day, the world's first treaty embodying the notion that no nuclear weapons should be allowed to exist on Earth was adopted by the United Nations on July 7, 2017.

The Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons bans developing, testing, producing, possessing, using or threatening to use nuclear weapons.

The treaty was adopted by a vote of 122 countries, or 60 percent of the U.N. member states, in favor. The agreement will come into effect 90 days after the number of nations that have ratified it reaches 50.

Last month, Lesotho, an enclaved kingdom encircled by South Africa, became the 38th country to ratify the treaty. More countries are expected to join the pact in the coming months.

Despite concerns about the COVID-19 pandemic's delaying effect on the process, the treaty is now believed to have a good chance of coming into force later this year or early next year.

The international campaign to establish a legally binding international treaty to prohibit nuclear arms was first led by a group of countries including Austria and Mexico.........

© The Asahi Shimbun

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