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Second Meeting of States Parties to the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons General Exchange of Views

Tuesday, 28 November 2023
Ambassador Ariel R. Peñaranda, Chargé d’affaires, a.i. of the Philippine Mission to the United Nations
Trusteeship Council, United Nations Headquarters, New York


Muchas gracias, Señor Presidente,

Agradecemos a Mèxico por convocar esta importante reunión. Apreciamos mucho su liderazgo crucial en este proceso.

We are at a historical crossroads, where the echoes of a Cold War past meet the alarming realities of today’s geopolitics. The specter of nuclear weapon-sharing, advancements in nuclear weaponry, and destabilizing nuclear rhetoric confronts us. Additionally, the abandonment of an agreement that prohibits nuclear weapons tests further exacerbates our collective security concerns. In the face of these mounting challenges, the imperative for the universalization of the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons (TPNW) has never been more pressing.

Guided by the Vienna Action Plan since our inaugural Meeting of States, we have achieved significant milestones. Research and scientific studies on the catastrophic impact of nuclear weapons use and testing underscore the urgency of our cause. In this vein, integrating humanitarian principles into our disarmament policies is essential. Such an integration, emphasizing the human cost of nuclear weapons, compels us to actively mitigate the harm and prioritize the safeguarding of human life and our environment.

The progress made within informal working groups aligns with our goals and objectives, prompting our sincere gratitude to the chairs and co-chairs of these groups.

As a State Party committed to the TPNW, the Philippines upholds its commitments, demonstrated through the following:

  • Hosting a high-level event during the high-level week, rejuvenating the three-decade journey towards a Fissile Material Cut-off Treaty (FMCT). Our support for a multilateral, non-discriminatory, and verifiable FMCT is aligned with global non-proliferation and disarmament objectives, aimed at curbing nuclear proliferation and limiting the growth of nuclear arsenals.
  • Consistently advocating for states to sign and ratify the TPNW, both in bilateral and multilateral forums.
  • Actively co-sponsoring resolutions that promote a nuclear weapons-free world, including a recent resolution promoting victim assistance and environmental remediation for states impacted by nuclear weapons use or testing, initiated by Kazakhstan and Kiribati in the First Committee.

We call for collaborative efforts to ensure robust TPNW implementation, rooted in our collective trust and the steadfast compliance of all States Parties. These efforts underscore our united dedication to the principles and objectives of both the TPNW and the NPT.

Moreover, given the rapidly evolving security landscape, we emphasize the importance of addressing the implications of emerging technologies in the nuclear domain.

While we laud the addition of 11 new signatories, ratifications, and accessions — signifying our progress towards universalization — we acknowledge the ongoing need for concerted action. The Vienna Action Plan remains our guide, endorsing recommendations from the informal working groups on initiatives like voluntary reporting on positive obligations to enhance transparency and accountability, collaboration with the Scientific Advisory Group on integrating gender perspectives, and exploring cooperation between the TPNW and the NPT, and working towards universalization of the TPNW.

We welcome your proposal, Mr. President, for thematic debates in future meetings. Such discussions will ensure focused and in-depth deliberations on specific facets of the Treaty's implementation.

Mr. President,

We reaffirm the Philippines' resolve to work hand in hand with all States towards the realization of a nuclear-weapon-free world. In these times, nurturing trust and building bridges among nations is not just beneficial—it is indispensable.

Our unified actions today are crucial in redefining global priorities and shaping a safer future for everyone. It is time to shift the course of history from the brink of peril to the promise of peace.

Thank you, Mr. President.