Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Burma's Mission Holds Closed Door Meeting on Nuclear Disarmament at UN

By Lalit K. Jha / United Nations
The Irrawaddy News

The Burmese mission at the United Nations convened a closed door meeting on the issue of nuclear disarmament on Monday.

The meeting, chaired by the Burmese Ambassador to European Union, Wunna Maung Lwin, was convened to discuss with member nations the resolution on nuclear disarmament tabled by the government of Myanmar in the UN General Assembly.

The resolution that calls for total elimination of nuclear weapons has been brought before the General Assembly by the Burmese mission every year since 1994. Last year the resolution was passed by 115 votes to 48, while 18 countries abstained from voting.

It is understood that at the meeting—which lasted for little over half an hour although it was scheduled for an hour—certain amendments were proposed by some member nations.

A Canadian diplomat at the closed door meeting told The Irrawaddy they would vote in favor of the resolution only after the government of Myanmar accepts suggestions with regard to Canada’s view on nuclear disarmament.

The Burmese resolution on nuclear disarmament was first introduced and passed by the General Assembly in 1994. Since then it has been passed every year with minor amendments.

The resolution urges states with nuclear weapons to immediately halt qualitative improvement, development, production and stockpiling of the nuclear warheads and their delivery systems. It also urges those nations to agree to an internationally and legally binding instrument on a joint undertaking not to be the first to use nuclear weapons.

It also urges the nuclear weapon-owning states to commence plurilateral negotiations among themselves to deeply reduce nuclear weapons.

Calling on all nuclear countries to carry out further reductions of non-nuclear weapons, the resolution calls for immediate negotiations at the Conference on Disarmament on a non-discriminatory, multilateral and internationally and effective verifiably treaty banning the production of fissile material for nuclear weapons or other nuclear explosive devices, on the basis of the report of the Special Co-coordinator.

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

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