|Department of Public Information • News and Media Division • New York|
Sixty-first General Assembly
17th Meeting (AM)
MIDDLE EAST NUCLEAR PROLIFERATION, CONFIDENCE-BUILDING IN CONVENTIONAL ARMS
ADDRESSED IN DISARMAMENT COMMITTEE DRAFT TEXTS
The First Committee (Disarmament and International Security), today, heard the introduction of three additional draft resolutions, two on nuclear weapons and one on conventional arms.
Introducing a draft on the establishment of a nuclear-weapon-free zone in the Middle East (document A/C.1/61/L.1), Khaled Abdel Rahman Shamaa ( Egypt) said that grave challenges to the non-proliferation system required immediate efforts to move towards establishing such a zone. The draft pointed to the priority for practical steps to free the Middle East of nuclear weapons and subject all nuclear activities to International Atomic Energy Agency safeguards. It called on all countries in the region to abstain from developing, testing, and acquiring nuclear weapons, and from allowing them to be placed on their territories, until such a zone was established.
He said that his country supported the development of nuclear weapon-free zones, and called for the universalization of the Non-Proliferation Treaty. Egypt also supported the resumption of six-party talks, aiming for complete nuclear disarmament of the Korean Peninsula and the establishment of a nuclear weapons-free zone there. He called on the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea to adhere to the Non-Proliferation Treaty and submit all of its nuclear facilities to the safeguards of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA).
Introducing a draft on the risk of nuclear proliferation in the Middle East (A/C.1/61/L.2), he said that the text aimed to consolidate the non-proliferation system and prevent its collapse. Moreover, it drew attention to the threat of having nuclear facilities in the Middle East that were not subject to IAEA safeguards. He called on Israel to adhere to the Non-Proliferation Treaty, in order to realize the universalization of the treaty in the Middle East and strengthen peace in the region.
Introducing a draft resolution on information on confidence-building measures in the field of conventional arms (document A/C.1/61/L.40), Gabriela Martinic (Argentina) said that the draft was part of an effort to regain the dialogue that had taken place during the substantive sessions of the 2001 and 2003 Disarmament Commission. She welcomed the establishment of an electronic database containing information provided by Member States and requested that it be kept updated. She also encouraged Member States to continue adopting confidence-building measures in the field of conventional arms and to provide relevant information on them.
The Committee will meet again at 10 a.m. Friday, 20 October, to begin a thematic discussion on other disarmament measures and international security, regional disarmament and security and the disarmament machinery, as well as to hear the further introduction of draft resolutions and decisions.
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