The United Nations will be hosting the annual Treaty Event next week at its Headquarters in New York, inviting Member States to sign multilateral treaties deposited with the Secretary-General or to become parties to them by depositing instruments of ratification or accession.
“The spirit of the Treaty Event is simple – the Secretary-General invites high-level dignitaries to seize the opportunity of their presence in New York for the opening of the annual session of the General Assembly to join multilateral treaties,” Santiago Villalpando, the Chief of the Treaty Section in the UN Office of Legal Affairs, said at a press conference in New York.
“Multilateral treaties are a key instrument for States members to maintain international peace and security, develop friendly relations, and achieve international cooperation. Throughout the history of the Organization, hundreds of multilateral treaties have been adopted in all areas of international relations, ranging from human rights to telecommunications to protection of environment,” he added.
This year, the Treaty Event will focus on promoting multilateral treaties that safeguard humanity, such as treaties on human rights, refugees and stateless persons, health, trade, transport, terrorism and criminal matters, law of the sea, outer space, disarmament, climate change and other environmental issues.
One of the key instruments this year is the new Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons, which was adopted this July and will open for signature next week
The Treaty – adopted by a vote of 122 in favour to one against (Netherlands), with one abstention (Singapore) – prohibits a full range of nuclear-weapon-related activities, such as undertaking to develop, test, produce, manufacture, acquire, possess or stockpile nuclear weapons or other nuclear explosive devices, as well as the use or threat of use of these weapons.
The Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons is one of more than 560 multilateral treaties deposited with the Secretary-General, covering all aspects of the work of the Organization.
The Treaty Event, held annually since 2000, may be used to sign, ratify or accede to any of these treaties.