UNODA Update

High Representative Kane calls cornerstone of the global nuclear non-proliferation regime a 'living' treaty

12 May 2012 — High Representative for Disarmament Affairs, Angela Kane, opened the first session of the Preparatory Committee (PrepCom) for the 2015 Review Conference of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT). The session was held from 30 April to 11 May 2012 at the Vienna International Centre. The session was chaired by Ambassador Peter Woolcott, Permanent Representative to the UN in Geneva. This meeting was the first of three sessions of the five-year review process.

Conference

Delegates to the Preparatory Committee

In her remarks, Ms. Kane underscored that the NPT remains the cornerstone of the global nuclear non-proliferation regime and is the only treaty that obligates all recognized nuclear weapon States—and all other States Parties—to pursue negotiations in good faith on nuclear disarmament. She also noted that "It is the review process that helps to sustain the NPT as a 'living' Treaty that is periodically assessed in light of the ever-evolving political and strategic circumstances of our times."

A positive political atmosphere prevailed at the session. The States Parties reaffirmed their commitment to the NPT and underlined their resolve to seek a safer world without nuclear weapons. The discussions generally focussed on the implementation of the conclusions and recommendations for follow-on actions agreed to at the 2010 NPT Review Conference.

Conference

Left to right: Ms. Angela Kane, UN High Representative for Disarmament Affairs Ambassador Peter Woolcott, Permanent Representative of Australia to the UN in Geneva and PrepCom Chair Mr. Thomas Markram, WMD Branch, UNODA and PrepCom Secretary

Mr. Jaakko Laajava, Facilitator for the 2012 Conference on establishing a Middle-East zone free of nuclear weapons and all other weapons of mass destruction also briefed the session on the preparations for the Conference.

In his closing remarks, Ambassador Woolcott expressed the hope that the Committee's first session had led the States parties to recognize that they had made a start on implementing the commitments of 2010, but that an enormous amount of work remained. The States parties needed to stay focused and constructive.

The next session will take place in Geneva from 22 April to 3 May 2013.

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