Happy Birthday, Pelindaba Treaty!

To celebrate the 12th anniversary of the signing of the African Nuclear Weapon-Free Zone Treaty (Pelindaba Treaty), the talented folks at the CNS International Organizations and Nonproliferation Program (IONP) put together a “*resource page on the Pelindaba Treaty*”:http://cns.miis.edu/research/treaty_pelindaba/index.htm.

On March 26, Mozambique became the 24th state party to ratify the Treaty, which means the African Nuclear Weapon-Free Zone needs concrete action of just four more states to become a reality. CNS has been actively engaged in promoting the Treaty’s entry into force, so aside from the all you need to know on the Pelindaba Treaty, the resource page also features presentations from a recent “workshop in Pretoria”:http://cns.miis.edu/research/treaty_pelindaba/pdfs/pelindaba_workshop_summary.pdf, organized by CNS and Africa’s Institute for Security Studies. An accompanying “piece”:http://www.cns.miis.edu/pubs/week/080331_pelindaba.htm by IONP’s Jean du Preez concludes:

If one looks at the current state of affairs regarding the Pelindaba Treaty, then the conclusion should clearly be that the *glass is half full* instead of the more negative half empty perspective.


The *challenge before African countries*, and in particular those that have not yet ratified the treaty, *should therefore not be how to implement the accord, but who will become the 28th state party*, thereby taking credit for ensuring that the longest aspired NWFZ in the world will finally become a reality. Then the symbolism attached to the Zulu name of the treaty, which roughly translates into “the matter or discussion is settled”, will have true meaning. It will not only signal the end of the struggle to make Africa free of nuclear weapons, but it would be *a real step towards a nuclear weapons free world*, and not simply a vision of such a goal.

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