On the 20th September 2017, the Treaty to Prohibit Nuclear Weapons was opened for signature. Samoa was one of the 50 States that signed the Treaty including three states that deposited their instruments of ratification. Almost a week later, on the 26th September 2017, the United Nations held a High-Level Meeting to commemorate and promote the international day for the total elimination of nuclear weapons. The United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres was present and emphasized on the cooperation of member states to rid the world of nuclear weapons. In the political atmosphere we have nowadays, with the threats of nuclear attacks from nuclear weapon states makes this timely high level meeting very critical.
Samoa took this opportunity to deliver a national statement as a reminder to the member states of the United Nations that nuclear weapons in there mere existence will never guarantee a peaceful world. The Pacific region in the early 1970's founded the Pacific Islands Forum to take a united stand against nuclear weapons testing in the pacific region.
Mrs Miriama Betham - Malielegaoi, Deputy Permanent Representative/ Charge D'affairs of the Samoa Mission delivered Samoa's national statement and indicated that Samoa is no longer protected by its isolation and will not be silent observers of the nuclear power struggles on display worldwide.
The vulnerability and Pacific regions experiences with nuclear weapons testing has strengthened the advocacy of Samoa for disarmament.