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ICAN Commends Commitment Of ECOWAS, To Nuclear Disarmament



The International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapon, ICAN, has commended the Economic Community of the West African States, ECOWAS, for their unflinching commitment to global campaign for Nuclear Disarmament.


This commendation was contained in a report delivered at the ongoing Session of the ECOWAS Parliament in Abuja, on Thursday. According to ICAN, ECOWAS has played a leading role in global disarmament issues such as the process leading to the coming into force of the International Arms Trade Treaty (ATT).


“We are also aware that ECOWAS is a shining example as one of the first regional blocs to adopt a Convention regulating Small Arms and light Weapons and other related policies.


“Like ECOWAS, we believe that to address disarmament issues, we must focus on the humanitarian impact and work together through international law and multilateralism,” said Very Reverend Kolade Fadahunsi, ICAN Regional Coordinator, who presented the report.


ICAN reiterated that, it is easy to see how African countries stand to suffer tremendously from a nuclear crisis in which they had no involvement, as the consequences of nuclear weapons do not stop at borders.


“The impact on food security, migration, infrastructure, and development would be devastating. And just as with other conflict, war and disasters, the most vulnerable communities will be disproportionally affected,” the report says.


Historically, the report said, the world is still paying the price for atmospheric testing of nuclear weapons in 1944-1980. Algeria suffered four atmospheric nuclear tests at the hands of France in the early 60’s, followed by more than a dozen underground tests. From February 1960 to February 1966, France detonated a total 17 nuclear bombs in the Algerian Sahara.


The United Nations Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons of 2017 is the first globally applicable multilateral agreement to prohibit nuclear weapons were the only weapons of mass destruction not subject to a comprehensive ban, despite their catastrophic, widespread and persistent humanitarian and environmental consequences.