Qatar expresses concern over lack of political will to make progress in disarmament

April 09, 2014 - 2:20:18 pm

NEW YORK: The State of Qatar has expressed concern about the paralysis of the Conference on Disarmament (CD) since 1996 because of a lack of political will to adopt the agenda of the Conference.

Third Secretary of Qatar's Permanent Mission to the United Nations Ghanem Abdulrahman Al-Hedifi said before the Disarmament Commission that no progress had been achieved in the Commission's deliberations since 1999 and there is no significant progress in the field of nuclear disarmament since the first session of the General Assembly devoted to disarmament, held in 1978. 

Adding that this raises more than a question mark on the feasibility of holding such meetings every year if there are no minimum goals that must be achieved after the convening of each committee.

He stressed that the aim of the Commission's meetings is not only to meet, but also to come up with results and concrete recommendations that will help to achieve a quantum leap in the field of disarmament and non-proliferation by reaching consensus to create a comprehensive treaty for the total elimination of nuclear weapons.

Al-Hedifi added that among the results of the 2010 Review Conference was the adoption of a resolution that includes specific steps towards the implementation of the decision of the 1995 Review Conference on making the Middle East zone free of nuclear weapons and other weapons of mass destruction. 

These specific steps included the assigning of United Nations Secretary General, in coordination with states of the region, to appoint facilitator and designation of the host country as well as the date of the conference, he added.

He noted that in spite of the efforts made by Arab states and other international actors in order to hold that conference on time, the conference had not been held due to the unwillingness of one country in the region to join other states in favor of holding the conference, which aims to make the Middle East a zone free of nuclear weapons and other weapons of mass destruction .

The Third Secretary of Qatar's Permanent Mission to the United Nations Ghanem Abdulrahman Al-Hedifi confirmed the position of the State of Qatar and the position of the Arab Group regarding the necessity of Israel's accession to the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons and placement of all its nuclear facilities under comprehensive International Atomic Energy Agency safeguards. 

The Third Secretary of Qatar's Permanent Mission to the United Nations Ghanem Abdulrahman Al-Hedifi stressed that if the nuclear states are serious in promoting disarmament machinery, the way to achieve it is clear which is taking concrete and serious steps in order to disarm their nuclear weapons and to refrain from conducting any nuclear tests. 

He said that the most important steps that must be undertaken in order to achieve this is calling nuclear states which have not signed the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty to accede to it.

He stressed the keenness of the State of Qatar to strengthen the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons and to activate the pillars which the treaty is based on.

Al-Hedifi welcomed in this regard the initiative launched by Egypt before the 68th session of the General Assembly, aimed to adopt concrete steps to support international and regional efforts in order to establish zone free of nuclear weapons and other weapons of mass destruction in the Middle East. 

He also welcomed the messages sent by the Arab states and Iran to the UN Secretary-General, which affirmed their support for the Egyptian initiative. 

He concluded by emphasizing Qatar's stance and the stance of the Arab Group on the 2012 conference for the establishment of  zone free of nuclear weapons and weapons of mass destruction in the Middle East as soon as possible and set a new date for the conference. 

Pointing out that the delay in setting the date of this conference will raise doubts about the goodwill of the countries which possess nuclear weapons in establishing a zone free of nuclear weapons in the Middle East. (QNA)

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