CAIRO, Jan. 22 (Xinhua) -- The Arab League (AL) welcomed on Friday the entry into force of the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons, urging for intensifying international efforts to establish a nuclear-weapon-free zone in the Middle East.
In a statement, the AL Secretary-General, Ahmed Aboul-Gheit, described the move as an important step towards the disarmament and the non-proliferation of nuclear weapons in the world.
Aboul-Gheit stressed that this development would help commence a new phase that would be a motivation for intensifying international efforts to achieve the final and irreversible disposal of nuclear weapons worldwide.
He explained that the Arab countries were supportive of international efforts during the negotiation process for this treaty, "despite Israel's boycott of this path as an extension of its anti-nuclear disarmament policies and its stances opposing international efforts aimed at getting rid of nuclear weapons, especially in the Middle East."
"It is time to intensify efforts to establish a nuclear-weapon-free zone in the Middle East, which is fully consistent with the objectives of this treaty," the AL chief said.
The Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons was adopted in July 2017 and was opened for signature in September 2017. Honduras signed the 50th ratification of the treaty on Oct. 25 last year, triggering it to enter into force on Jan. 22, 2021, 90 days after its 50th instrument of ratification, acceptance, approval or accession has been deposited.