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Press Release
UNITED NATIONS
Department of Public Information · News Coverage Service · New York


Fifty-ninth General Assembly
First Committee
4th Meeting (AM)
GA/DIS/3274
7 October 2004


SELECTIVE INTERPRETATION OF TREATIES SHAKING 'PILLARS'

OF INTERNATIONAL SECURITY, DISARMAMENT COMMITTEE TOLD
 
Adherence to Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear
Weapons, Surge in Military Spending Among Other Issues in General Debate


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Background

The First Committee (Disarmament and International Security) met this morning to continue its general debate on the whole range of arms limitation and security arrangements.  (For background, see Press Release GA/DIS/3271 and 3272.)

Statements

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MOHAMED AL-MATRAFI (Saudi Arabia) ...

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He stated that the dismantling of all nuclear weapons was a goal that the Middle East hoped to achieve.  Israel should submit to International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) verifications.  There should be no double standards for Israel, which had remained the only country in the Middle East region that has not acceded to relevant treaties on non-proliferation.

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MOHAMED AL-NAJAR (Yemen) ...

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... Despite the effort to turn the Middle East into a nuclear-weapon-free zone, Israel still possessed nuclear weapons in violation of international resolutions that called on it to accede to relevant international treaties.  The international community should call on Israel to open to IAEA verifications.

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SAAD MAANDI (Algeria) ...

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... Turning to his own part of the world, he said Israel should help create a nuclear-weapon-free zone in the Middle East, the Mediterranean Sea should be converted into a lake of peace and cooperation, and that the Maghreb region should be made stable, homogenous and prosperous.  For its part, his country would be publicly destroying its landmine stockpiles in the coming days.

NABEELA ABDULLA AL-MULLA (Kuwait) ...

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Since it believed in the importance of nuclear security, Kuwait had signed the agreement on notification in case of a nuclear incident, she continued.  All States that had not concluded the necessary safeguards with the IAEA should do so and all parties to the NPT should observe their commitments.  Israel, the only State in the Middle East that had not acceded to the NPT, and the only party that possessed nuclear weapons in the region, should accede immediately to the relevant treaties and become subject to the IAEA regime.  The Israeli nuclear stockpile caused an imbalance in the Middle East.

She added that the time had come to take the crucial decisions necessary in order to implement the resolutions adopted to rid the world of weapons of mass destruction.  States in possession of nuclear weapons should take the necessary steps to prohibit their proliferation.  Member States that had not done so, particularly the 11 whose endorsement was needed for its entry into force, should endorse the CTBT.  Nuclear-weapon States should suspend any nuclear tests until that treaty entered into force.  Kuwait had imposed the necessary regulations to implement the recent resolution on non-proliferation of weapons of mass destruction.

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