Saint Vincent and the Grenadines signs Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty
Vienna, 2 July 2009:
Saint Vincent and the Grenadines is the 181st State to have signed the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty (CTBT). The signing ceremony took place on 2 July 2009 at the United Nations Headquarters in New York.
30 of the 33 States in Latin America and the Caribbean are now Signatories to the CTBT and 28 of those have already ratified it. The three remaining non-signatories are Cuba, Dominica, and Trinidad and Tobago.
Prior to today’s signature, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines had already shown its interest in the work of the Preparatory Commission for the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty Organization (CTBTO). The country participated in a regional CTBTO workshop in Nassau, Bahamas, in November 2007 and in a CTBTO-related regional ministerial meeting in San Jose, Costa Rica, in September 2008. A delegation from Saint Vincent and the Grenadines led by the Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister, Sir Louis Straker, is planning to come to Vienna, Austria, for an information visit later this month.
With 181 signatories, adherence to the CTBT is almost universal. To enter into force, however, the Treaty must be signed and ratified by the 44 States listed in Annex 2 to the Treaty. These States participated in the negotiations of the Treaty in 1996 and possessed nuclear power or research reactors at the time. Thirty-five of these States have ratified the Treaty, including the three nuclear weapon States France, Russian Federation and the United Kingdom. The remaining nine States are China, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Egypt, India, Indonesia, Iran, Israel, Pakistan and the United States.
A verification regime is being built to monitor compliance with the CTBT. 337 facilities worldwide will monitor underground, the oceans and the atmosphere for any sign of a nuclear explosion. Today, close to 250 facilities have been certified and incorporated into the network, and can send data to the International Data Centre at the CTBTO in Vienna.