Leader of world's biggest Muslim country calls for an end to nukes - 09-22-2011, 05:14 PM
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Published: 22 September, 2011, 17:44
Kazakhstan’s President Nursultan Nazarbayev has said that the current situation with nuclear non-proliferation in the world was unjust and called upon all countries to get rid of nuclear weapons.
Nazarbayev suggested in a special address to the 66th General Assembly of the United Nations that all countries begin working on a joint declaration of a nuclear-free world.
“We suggest starting the development of the universal declaration of a nuclear-free world. It is necessary to broaden the legal basis and to increase the international control over the countries’ obligations in the non-proliferation sphere performed by the UN and the IAEA,” the address reads.
The text of the statement was distributed by the presidential press service on Thursday.
Nazarbayev said that his country welcomed the treaty between the United States and Russia on stage-by-stage cuts in nuclear potentials and added that it was important that all other countries of the “Nuclear club” joined this process.
“A paradoxical situation has established in the world. Some countries are allowed to have nuclear weapons and others are strictly forbidden even to develop them. This is not just, not proportional and not honest. These articles of international law should be reconsidered,” the Kazakh leader said.
Nazarbayev also said that the responsibility of all nations to cut nuclear weapons and gradually destroy them completely should be increased, especially for those nations who actually possess such weapons.
“Today, the states that possess nuclear weapons provide no legal guarantees to the non-nuclear countries. The non-proliferation treaty is not working in this important direction. At the present stage, nuclear weapons are not a deterring factor, but rather a catalyst for an arms race,” Nazarbayev said.
The Kazakh president stressed that the universal control over nuclear weapons can now only be exercised by a collective body with broad powers, such as the UN Security Council. “I suggest that the international community approves a collective address to the countries that de-facto possess the nuclear weapons with a call to give up all nuclear ambitions,” Nazarbayev said.
The Republic of Kazakhstan inherited a large part of Soviet Union’s nuclear arsenal and was among the world’s largest nuclear powers when it declared independence in 1991. However, the country signed a non-proliferation treaty and voluntary transferred all nuclear weapons to the Russian Federation, as did the other former Soviet Republics that possessed them. The country still has a research nuclear reactor, but all spent fuel from it is being handed over to the IAEA.
President Nursultan Nazarbayev (right), is leader of the world's largest Muslim country by size Kazakhstan, which has nuclear weapons on its soil and bases which are part of the Russian space programme.
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10-13-2011, 11:23 AM
Astana hosts international anti-nuclear forum
A big international forum devoted to the nuclear weapons issue has been staged in Astana. Nursultan Nazarbayev urged the international community to develop a new global anti-nuclear movement. The UN, the United States, the International Atomic Energy Agency and the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty Organization have already spoken in favour of Kazakh leader’s initiative. There were several questions as to why other countries cannot close their nuclear test sites if Kazakhstan did so and was able to give up one of the world’s largest nuclear arsenals?
Daniel Poneman, the Deputy US Secretary of Energy, read President Obama’s message that said he greets all the participants of the Nuclear-Free World Forum and highly appreciates the historical decision of Kazakhstan and Nursultan Nazarbayev to close the Semipalatinsk Nuclear Test Site which laid the foundation for further ban on nuclear testing and, most importantly, it gave us a chance for a nuclear-free future. The US president noted in his address that Nursultan Nazarbayev chose the path to peace. He added that Kazakhstan has been a leader in nuclear safety which is why today Kazakhstan has become the safest place in the world. Daniel Poneman added that Barack Obama fully supports the vision and the initiatives of the Kazakh leader.
According to Yukiya Amano, the IAEA General Director, Astana is the best place for this conference since under the leadership of Nursultan Nazarbayev, Kazakhstan closed the Semipalatinsk Test Site, renounced its nuclear arsenal, and established a nuclear-free zone in Central Asia. All this became a precedent for the entire world and he believes that this conference will make an important contribution to building a nuclear-free world.
Tibor Toth, the Executive Secretary of the Preparatory Commission for the CTBTO, expressed his gratitude to Nursultan Nazarbayev and said that Kazakhstan’s rare experience should be an inspiration for others. He continued by saying that Kazakhstan has proven that a nuclear-free world can become a reality, but this requires wise leadership. Mr. Toth also noted that Kazakhstan and Nursultan Nazarbayev offered a clear solution on how to implement the idea of global nuclear disarmament.
US Congressman Eni Faleomavaega said that, 20 years ago, Nursultan Nazarbayev made a decision that changed the course of the nation’s development as well as the entire world. Therefore he encouraged the Nobel Committee to praise the Kazakh leader’s contribution to the global nuclear disarmament cause and the US official fully shares the Kazakh president’s vision. According to the Congressman, if Kazakhstan was able to give up its nuclear arsenal, so can others, thus Nursultan Nazarbayev leads us towards a nuclear-free world.
The UN Secretary-General sent his video message to the international forum for a nuclear-free world in Astana.
The UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon said in his message that this meeting is yet another example of President Nazarbayev’s leadership in global nuclear disarmament. He noted that he would never forget his trip to Semipalatinsk and thanks to Kazakh president’s courageous decision, Semipalatinsk has become a symbol of hope. This meeting and the president’s initiatives are critical for global nuclear disarmament so the UN Secretary General fully supports them.
Nursultan Nazarbayev encouraged the world to abandon nuclear weapons, but not the atom for peace. The Kazakh leader said that there is no more reliable and long-term source of high energy. However, the president stressed that it should be developed under strict control. He reminded the forum attendees of Kazakhstan’s readiness to become a depository of the international nuclear fuel bank. The IAEA Director General seconded this initiative.
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