Nukes divert needed investments, threaten humanity: Mexico

09:32, May 07, 2010      

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Facing crises such as the economic downturn and climate change, the world should not spend its resources on developing nuclear weapons, Mexican Ambassador to the UN Claude Heller told the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty ( NPT) Review Conference on Thursday.

"In times of a profound world economic crisis and of great challenges to the international community such as climate change, the enormous expenditure related to nuclear weapons is detrimental to the economic and social development of the peoples," he said on the fourth day of the month-long Review Conference.

Heller said the simple existence of nuclear weapons encourages their production elsewhere and creates "a false assumption" that individual and collective security depends precisely on the possibility of obtaining them.

"As long as nuclear weapons have a relevant role in military and strategic doctrines, and there is no clear commitment to their destruction, there will always be incentives for other states to acquire them for the same purpose," he said. "The existence of nuclear weapons creates the need to possess them."

The Mexican ambassador called on Israel, India, and Pakistan to adhere to the NPT.

Iran, Heller said, must comply with decisions of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), respond to all requests of information concerning its nuclear program, with Security Council resolutions, and renounce explicitly and verifiably to the possession of nuclear weapons.

"Without a doubt, this will contribute to foster dialogue and cooperation as a means to solve controversies in the region," he said.

The 2010 Review Conference, he said, has the potential to make progress on several fronts, including a commitment by nuclear- weapon states to publicly declare the number of atomic warheads in their arsenals, a commitment for a "no-strike first" policy, a commitment to negotiate a legally binding instrument on negative security assurances pending the total elimination of nuclear weapons, and the reaffirmation of the unequivocal commitment by the nuclear- weapon states to completely disarm.

"Forty years after the entry into force of the NPT, there are still more than 23,000 nuclear warheads in the world, hundreds of which could be launched in less than four minutes," he said. "A world that can self-destroy itself hundreds of times will never be safer than one in which no weapons of extermination exist."

Source: Xinhua


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