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Canadian experts commend Kazakhstan’s contribution to int’l security and nuclear disarmament

26 August 2021 20:11

OTTAWA. KAZINFORM - A Kazakhstan-Canadian online conference was held on August 25, 2021 as part of a series of events dedicated to the 30th anniversary of the Semipalatinsk nuclear test site closure. The event discovered Kazakhstan’s initiatives and achievements in the nuclear disarmament and non-proliferation fields over the independence years, Kazinform has learnt from the press service of the Kazakh MFA.

In his opening remarks the Counsellor of Kazakhstan Embassy to Canada Mr. Murat Rustemov noted that nuclear disarmament and non-proliferation of weapons of mass destruction are among the priority directions of Kazakhstan's foreign policy. Kazakhstani diplomat stressed that international experts commend such initiatives of our country as the closure of the Semipalatinsk nuclear test site, the voluntary renunciation of the world’s fourth nuclear arsenal, and the establishment of a Low-Enriched Uranium Bank (LEU) on its territory under the IAEA auspices.

The diplomat noted that Kazakhstan contributed to multilateral negotiations leading to the concluding an agreement on the Iranian nuclear program in 2015 by hosting two rounds of talks between Iran and the «5 + 1» group in Almaty in 2013.

The Kazakh diplomat emphasized that on the initiative of the First President of Kazakhstan Nursultan Nazarbayev, the Global Alliance of Leaders for Nuclear Security and a World Free of Nuclear Weapons (GAL) is created, which purpose is to promote the creation of a safe future of mankind, free from the threat of nuclear war.

The participants were also briefed on the initiative of Kazakhstan’s President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev to establish a specialized agency accountable to the UN Security Council and the UN General Assembly – the International Agency for Biological Safety, which in its activities will be guided by the 1972 Biological Weapons Convention.

Former Ambassador of Canada for Disarmament, the Honourable Douglas Roche, stressed that since gaining its independence, Kazakhstan has been a vocal supporter of nuclear disarmament and is a commendable and well-deserved role model for the entire international community. In his opinion, the country contributes significantly to the global nuclear dialogue and has established itself as a responsible member of the international community. The Canadian expert noted that Kazakhstan and Canada have similar positions on many issues on the international agenda and can jointly contribute to the qualitative advancement of the dialogue in the field of international nuclear security.

President of the Rideau Institute Ms. Peggy Mason welcomed Kazakhstan’s activeness in the field of nuclear disarmament and non-proliferation since independence in 1991. She stressed that a new arms race is currently taking place, which may lead to conflicts using weapons of mass destruction. The expert believes that the only way out of this situation is for Kazakhstan and other countries to continue their efforts to further institutionalize the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT) and the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons (TPNW).

Executive Director of NGO Project Ploughshares Mr. Cesar Jaramillo commended Kazakhstan’s efforts, its significant contribution to nuclear disarmament and non-proliferation, noting that Nur-Sultan and Ottawa share common positions on these issues. He noted that Kazakhstan is one of the leaders in the above areas and makes a significant contribution to the global elimination of nuclear weapons and the achievement of a world free of nuclear weapons by the UN’s Centennial in 2045.

Director of the Center for International Security and Policy Mr. Alimzhan Akhmetov noted that our country is an active participant of all international treaties in the field of nuclear security, including the CTBT, NPT and TPNW, which contribute to the creation of a world free from the threat of nuclear war. He emphasized that Kazakhstan took a direct part in the development of the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons (TPNW), as well as in the meetings of the preparatory committees for NPT Review Conference. The Kazakh expert also described in detail the country’s anti-nuclear initiatives, including the Universal Declaration on Achieving a World Free of Nuclear Weapons and the ATOM Project.

In general, the event demonstrated the significant interest of the research circles of the host country in further strengthening cooperation between Kazakhstan and Canada in nuclear disarmament and non-proliferation sphere.

The event was held by initiative of the Embassy of the Republic of Kazakhstan to Canada and co-sponsored by the Canadian Network to Abolish Nuclear Weapons (CNANW), the independent, non-profit think tank «Rideau Institute» and Canadian NGO «Project Ploughshares» working in nuclear disarmament, outer space security, and conventional weapons control spheres.