|45th Anniversary of the Treaty of Tlatelolco Signing|
6 Feb 2012
On February 14th, there will be commemorated the signing of the Treaty for the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons in Latin America and the Caribbean, better known as the Treaty of Tlatelolco. The event has been organized by the OPANAL (Agency for the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons in Latin America and the Caribbean). Afterwards, there will take place a two-day international seminar on "The Experience of the NWFZ (Nuclear Weapons Free Zone) in Latin America and the Caribbean and the outlook to 2015", where the President and Founder of the NPSGlobal Foundation, Mrs. Irma Argüello, will act as moderator.
This Treaty was proposed by Mexican President Gustavo Díaz Ordaz (1964-1970) in response to the fears generated by the missile crisis in Cuba. It was enforced on April 25, 1969, establishing a nuclear weapons free zone in Latin America and the Caribbean. Its objectives are to ensure the absence of nuclear weapons in the defined area of application, to promote general disarmament, and to control that the nuclear facilities of the signatory countries are exclusively used for peaceful purposes. It has been signed by 33 countries, up to this moment, including Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Cuba, Ecuador, El Salvador, Guatemala, Haiti, Honduras, Jamaica, Mexico, Nicaragua, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, Dominican Republic, Uruguay and Venezuela.
Irma Argüello, who will moderate the panel "Control and Verification System established by the Treaty of Tlatelolco, its relationship with the IAEA and ABACC", said that "the NWFZ in Latin America and the Caribbean is a clear example of the vocation of peace in the countries of our region and the commitment to nuclear disarmament and non-proliferation. It has opened a path that other regions have followed".
There will be speaking at this ceremony the General Secretary of OPANAL, Gioconda Ubeda, the Executive Secretary of the Preparatory Commission of the Comprehensive-Nuclear Test Ban Treaty Organization, Tibor Toth, the High Representative of the United Nations for Disarmament Affairs, Sergio Duarte, and the General Director of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), Yukiya Amano. Other lecturers will be the Minister of Foreign Affairs and Worship of Costa Rica, Enrique Castillo, as President Pro Tempore of the Council of OPANAL, and the Secretary of Foreign Affairs of Mexico, Patricia Espinosa.
Subsequently, Duarte will lecture on "The Importance of NWFZ in the process of nuclear disarmament” and there will start the five-panel debate of the international seminar on “The Experience of the NWFZ in Latin America and the Caribbean perspective towards 2015":
The discussion of these issues will contribute to strengthening the NWFZ in Latin America and the Caribbean and to achieving the major goal that is general disarmament, but the real challenge will be, according to Irma Argüello, "to achieve that the concept of NWFZ can permeate into high conflict regions, such as the Middle East, and to get as well a nuclear risk reduction through joint commitment. No doubt, she concluded, "a free zone of nuclear weapons is a bet where everybody wins”.