Ever since the atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki there have been consistent calls to ban the use of nuclear weapons and to negotiate complete nuclear disarmament.1 Over the years, numerous efforts have been made to reduce the risk of nuclear war, the effectiveness of which has been debatable.2 The most notable instrument addressing the dangers of nuclear weapons has been the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (‘NPT’).3 Arguably, this has at least led to fewer states developing nuclear weapons.4 However, although the NPT includes a provision calling upon states to work towards nuclear disarmament, only limited steps have been taken to this end. Even worse, 157some proliferation has occurred since the treaty was agreed, with India, Pakistan, Israel and the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (‘DPRK’) joining the ranks of nuclear-weapon possessor states.5 In the current political climate, it seems unlikely that the nuclear-weapon states will effectively work towards nuclear disarmament. In fact, several have openly talked about updating their nuclear arsenal and developing new types of nuclear weapons.6 It is against this background that many non-nuclear-weapon states came together to develop a treaty text banning nuclear weapons. The text of the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons (‘TPNW’)7 was adopted in July 2017 with the near unanimity of the participating states.8