Kazakhstan's secretary of state says UN must continue to work to decrease nuclear weapons worldwide

09:23, September 26, 2010      

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Kanat Saudabayev, the secretary of state and minister of foreign affairs of Kazakhstan, said here Saturday that the UN should continue to work on nuclear non-proliferation as a major goal.

Saudabayev's statements came as he was addressing the annual general debate of the General Assembly. This year the debate was titled "Reaffirming the central role of the United Nations in global governance."

Saudabayev said that the UN should engage completely in preventing the spread of nuclear weapons. He called upon nations that have not yet signed or ratified the Comprehensive Nuclear Test-Ban Treaty (CTBT), which bans nuclear explosions, to do so immediately.

"For the people of Kazakhstan, who know only too well all the horrors of nuclear tests, the issue of their total ban is of special relevance," Saudabayev said.

He said that nuclear testing in his country, the world's foremost producer of uranium, over the past 40 years, has damaged a land area the size of Germany.

Saudabayev also stressed the essential nature of the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT), calling it "an important instrument forming a foundation for the security of all of humanity."

He said that though Kazakhstan was enthusiastic about the latest NPT Review Conference, more should still be done to limit the proliferation of such weapons.

"We believe that it is extremely important to begin, as soon as possible, the drafting of an internationally binding instrument providing security assurances by nuclear powers to non-nuclear weapon states," he said. "Only such assurances can effectively keep in check the aspirations of certain non-nuclear states to acquire nuclear weapons, which they regard as a guarantee of their own security."

Saudabayev called for member states of the UN to enshrine their commitments to ending nuclear proliferation in a Universal Declaration of a Nuclear Free World. Such a declaration, he said, is an initiative of Nursultan Nazarbayev, president of Kazakhstan.

"We support a legitimate and inalienable right of each state party to the NPT to develop nuclear energy for peaceful purposes," he said. "However, such activities should be carried out in a transparent manner and on the basis of strict compliance with all requirements of the IAEA (International Atomic Energy Agency) and under its control."

Source: Xinhua


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