- Republic of Burundi last week ratified a global ban on nuclear test explosions, same day as Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty (CTBT) ministerial meeting was held at United Nations headquarters in New York, bringing total number of treaty ratifications to 145.
Executive secretary of Preparatory Commission for Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty Organisation, (CTBTO), Tibor Tóth, welcomed Burundi's ratification.
Adherence to CTBT is almost universal, with 179 states having signed treaty to date. This according to Vienna-based organisation applies especially to Africa, with Mauritius and Somalia, only countries in region that have not yet signed.
The group shows that four of 44 states listed in Annex 2 to treaty who must sign and ratify before CTBT can enter into force are in Africa: Algeria, Democratic Republic of Congo, Egypt and South Africa, of which only Egypt has yet to ratify.
Other eight states whose ratification is still required for treaty to enter into force are: China, Democratic People's Republic of Korea, India, Indonesia, Islamic Republic of Iran, Israel, Pakistan and United States of America.
It further states that other 35 of Annex 2 states have ratified treaty, including three nuclear weapon states France, Russian Federation, and United Kingdom.
CTBT bans all nuclear explosions. A verification regime reportedly being built to monitor compliance with treaty.
By time treaty enters into force, 337 facilities will monitor oceans, underground and atmosphere for any sign of a nuclear explosion, CTBT says.
It adds that 256 facilities have been installed to date and are sending data on a continuous basis to CTBTO's International Data Centre in Vienna.
Meanwhile, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has called on all countries to sign and ratify treaty.
"Despite progress that has been made, CTBT has still not entered into force. This is cause for serious concern," Mr Ban was quoted as saying.
He urged "all governments that have not yet done so to sign and ratify treaty without delay".
Iran reportedly argues that treaty does not fully meet nuclear disarmament criteria. The treaty only bans explosions, leaving other avenues wide open.
Iran, a signatory to nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT), is said to have called for a comprehensive agreement before it agrees to sign treaty.
Meanwhile, analysts believe should Washington refuse to sign CTBT, treaty will most likely be put to rest for good.
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