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Undecided

Switzerland

State with nuclear-free security policy

Switzerland voted in favour of adopting the TPNW at the UN Diplomatic Conference in 2017, but has not yet adhered to the Treaty and has consistently abstained on the UN General Assembly resolutions on the TPNW in 2018, 2019, and 2020. Switzerland maintains policies and practices that are compliant with all of the prohibitions in Article 1 of the TPNW, and can therefore sign and ratify the Treaty without making changes to existing practices or policies.

TPNW status
Not signed, not ratified, not acceded
Compatibility with prohibitions in TPNW Article 1(1)
Art 1(1)(a) Develop, produce, manufacture, acquire Compatible
Test Compatible
Possess or stockpile Compatible
Art 1(1)(b) Transfer Compatible
Art 1(1)(c) Receive transfer or control Compatible
Art 1(1)(d) Use Compatible
Threaten to use Compatible
Art 1(1)(e) Assist, encourage or induce Compatible
Art 1(1)(f) Seek or receive assistance Compatible
Art 1(1)(g) Allow stationing, installation, deployment Compatible
TPNW voting and participation
Vote on negotiation mandate (A/RES/71/258) Abstained
Participated in treaty negotiations (% women) Yes (14%)
Vote on adoption of treaty text Voted yes
Last vote on UNGA resolution Abstained
Fissile material
Fissile material production facilities No
Highly enriched uranium stocks No
Plutonium stocks (military/civilian) No/Stored abroad
Related treaties and regimes
Party to the NPT Yes
Party to a NWFZ No
Ratified the CTBT Yes (Annex 2 state)
Party to the PTBT Yes
Member of the CD Yes
IAEA CSA in force Yes
IAEA AP in force Yes
Party to the CWC Yes
Party to the BWC Yes

Latest developments

In June 2018, the Swiss Government published an interdepartmental working group (IDAG) report on the implications of accession to the TPNW. 'At the current stage', the report concluded, 'the reasons against an accession of Switzerland outweigh the potential opportunities accompanying a signature and ratification of this treaty.' Both houses of the Swiss Parliament subsequently instructed the government to sign and ratify without delay. The Swiss Government plans to update the IDAG report and review its decision after the NPT Review Conference, now postponed to 2021, and contends that this fulfils the mandate given by Parliament. Parliament and NGOs disagree. In a letter to ICAN dated 20 July 2020, the President of the Swiss Confederation, Ms. Simonetta Sommaruga, wrote: 'As you will know, the Federal Council has discussed the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons (TPNW) a number of times on the basis of an in-depth analysis by an interdepartmental working group. While the Federal Council decided not to join the Treaty at this stage, it took note of the position of the Swiss Parliament and agreed to re-evaluate the Swiss position on the TPNW earlier than originally planned. The outcomes of the next NPT Review Conference are one of several developments which will influence the Swiss re-evaluation.' Bern and Geneva have signed ICAN’s Cities Appeal. See: bit.ly/2nGIhQr, bit.ly/2kTeiqI, bit.ly/2ktmTQF.

Recommendations

  • Switzerland should urgently sign and ratify the TPNW, and encourage other states to adhere to the Treaty.
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