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International Day for the Total Elimination of Nuclear Weapons
26 September

Background

The General Assembly declared the International Day in December 2013, in resolution A/RES/68/32 as a follow-up to the high-level meeting of the General Assembly on nuclear disarmament held on 26 September 2013. 

The resolution,  inter alia, calls for the “urgent commencement of negotiations in the Conference on Disarmament for the early conclusion of a comprehensive convention on nuclear weapons to prohibit their possession, development, production, acquisition, testing, stockpiling, transfer and use or threat of use, and to provide for their destruction.”

The resolution “declares 26 September as the International Day for the Total Elimination of Nuclear Weapons devoted to furthering this objective [the total elimination of nuclear weapons], including through enhancing public awareness and education about the threat posed to humanity by nuclear weapons and the necessity for their total elimination, in order to mobilize international efforts towards achieving the common goal of a weapon” and furthermore “decides to convene, no later than 2018, a United Nations high-level international conference on nuclear disarmament to review the progress made in this regard.”

In addition, the Assembly called upon Member States, the United Nations system and civil society, including non-governmental organizations, academia, parliamentarians, the mass media and individuals, to commemorate and promote the International Day through all means of educational and public awareness-raising activities about the threat posed to humanity by nuclear weapons and the necessity for their total elimination in order to mobilize international efforts towards achieving the common goal of a nuclear-weapon-free world.

The United Nations General Assembly adopted the resolution on 5 December 2013 with a vote of 137-28 with 20 abstentions.

Pursuant to resolution A/RES/68/32, the General Assembly held informal meetings to commemorate the International Day for the Total Elimination of Nuclear Weapons on 26 September 2014 and on 30 September 2015.  The day has also been observed at the United Nations Office at Geneva and elsewhere by coordinating various activities throughout the world, such as symposia, conferences, exhibits, competitions, publications, instruction in academic institutions, media broadcasts and others. 

In 2014, in resolution A/RES/69/58, the General Assembly reinforced the commemoration of the Day, by requests the Secretary-General and the President of the General Assembly to make all the arrangements necessary to commemorate and promote it, including by convening an annual meeting of the Assembly to commemorate the International Day and to provide a platform for the promotion of these activities;

The General Assembly repeated these requests and call in 2015 in resolution A/RES/70/34.

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