UN chief Ban Ki-moon has appealed to India, China and the US along with five other nations to ratify the Comprehensive Nuclear Test-Ban Treaty (CTBT), saying the international community should complete the "unfinished business" of achieving a world free of atomic weapons.
In his message for the International Day against Nuclear Tests, to be observed on August 29, Ban said that ending all nuclear tests will lead to a safer and more prosperous future.
"I wish to appeal particularly to citizens of those States that have not yet ratified the Comprehensive Nuclear Test-Ban Treaty, especially the eight remaining Annex 2 States whose ratification is required for the Treaty's entry into force: China, the Democratic People's Republic of Korea, Egypt, India, Iran, Israel, Pakistan and the United States.
"Together, let us demand an end to all nuclear tests, get on with the unfinished business of achieving a world free of nuclear weapons and usher in a safer and more prosperous future," Ban said.
The eight countries are the other nations in a core group of 44 nuclear countries which have not ratified the treaty, which is a legally binding global ban on nuclear explosions of any kind.
The 44 nations which must ratify the CTBT to bring it into force all have nuclear weapons or atomic programmes.
The Soviet Union conducted its first nuclear test on August 29 in 1949, followed by another 455 nuclear tests over succeeding decades, with a "terrible effect" on the local population and environment.
Ban said these tests and hundreds more that followed in other countries became "hallmarks of a nuclear arms race, in which human survival depended on the doctrine of mutually assured destruction, known by its fitting acronym, MAD." Ban said the resolve and dedication of the "courageous" survivors of nuclear weapons and tests in Hiroshima, Nagasaki and Semipalatinsk should continue to guide the international community's work for a world without nuclear weapons.
"On this International Day against Nuclear Tests, let us all take a fresh look at those survivors' stories. Listen to their words and imagine the effects of these detonations as if they were experienced by each of us. Only then we can better understand the imperative to renew our commitment to a world free of nuclear weapons and nuclear tests," he said.
So far, 183 nations have signed the Treaty, and 162 have ratified it. CTBT will enter into force when the last remaining Annex 2 states sign and ratify the Treaty.
While China, Egypt, Iran, Israel, and the United States have signed the Treaty but not ratified it, North Korea, India, and Pakistan have not signed the treaty.