“I would like to congratulate ICAN, the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons, on their being awarded the Nobel Peace Prize”, said Federal Minister Kurz on the occasion of the decision taken today by the Nobel Prize Committee. “The fight against nuclear weapons isn’t only ICAN’s key concern, it has also been Austrian foreign policy‘s main focus for many years. It was working closely with ICAN that permitted Austria and its partner countries of Brazil, Ireland, Mexico, Nigeria and South Africa, to achieve the adoption of the treaty to abolish nuclear weapons by 122 countries on 7 July 2017”.
The Norwegian Prize Committee honoured ICAN for its work in raising awareness of the catastrophic humanitarian consequences of any use of nuclear weapons and, in particular, for its ground-breaking engagement to realising the treaty on the abolishment of nuclear weapons. The risk of the use of nuclear weapons has never been as ubiquitous as it is considering current developments, said the committee in justification of its decision.
“The awarding of the Nobel Peace Prize to ICAN will give due recognition to the worldwide commitment to the fight against nuclear weapons of mass destruction, which represent an existential threat to the whole of humanity“, said Sebastian Kurz.
“For me, ICAN is a great example that civil society can also achieve international greatness if it decisively engages in doing something positive. I would like to thank ICAN for the fantastic partnership, which will of course continue after the signing of the treaty on 20 September, in order to gain as many countries for the ban treaty as possible and what’s more, to work towards the elimination of nuclear weapons”
In the course of the United Nations General Assembly in New York, the treaty on banning nuclear weapons on 20 September was opened for signing. Up until now, over 50 countries have signed the treaty. This makes it clear that a large majority of countries around the world is speaking out against nuclear weapons.