23 August 2007
Press Release

Department of Public Information • News and Media Division • New York

United Nations Disarmament Conference Will Focus on Nuclear Issues,

In Sapporo, Japan, 27-29 August

NEW YORK, 23 August (Office for Disarmament Affairs) -- The nineteenth United Nations conference on disarmament issues will be held in Sapporo, Japan, from 27 to 29 August.  Organized by the Regional Centre for Peace and Disarmament in Asia and the Pacific of the United Nations Office for Disarmament Affairs, the conference is hosted by the Government of Japan and the City of Sapporo.

The conference will be opened by the United Nations High Representative for Disarmament Affairs, Sergio Duarte.  Approximately 60 participants from some 15 Governments, 10 academic institutions and think tanks, international and non-governmental organizations, and several journalists will attend the conference in their personal capacity.

In view of the growing threats to global and regional security arising from nuclear proliferation risks, the conference will address challenges facing the nuclear non-proliferation regime and strengthening of the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT), and will discuss a new vision and required leadership towards a world free from nuclear weapons and other weapons of mass destruction.  Regional issues in relation to nuclear testing and nuclear proliferation will also be discussed.  Further the conference will address the issue of nuclear terrorism, the recent findings of the International Institute for Strategic Studies on the nuclear black market and the International Convention for the Suppression of Acts of Nuclear Terrorism.

A special session will be devoted to chemical weapons and chemical terrorism, [12 years after the Tokyo subway Sarin attack] with the participation of the Director-General of the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW), Rogelio Pfirter.

The conference is financed from voluntary contributions made to the Regional Centre by the Government of Japan, the Hokkaido Prefecture and the City of Sapporo.

For further information, please contact Tsutomu Ishiguri, Director, Regional Centre for Peace and Disarmament in Asia and the Pacific, tel.:  917 367 4130; fax:  212 963 1121; e-mail:  rasandiharisoa@un.org.

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For information media • not an official record