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UAE informs UN about its law on the "peaceful use of nuclear energy"

posted on 12/10/2009: 842 views

New York - The United Arab Emirates has informed the United Nations that the law it has passed recently on the peaceful use of nuclear energy was an important step to embody a peaceful nature to all aspects of its nuclear program which will come into commercial operation in 2017, adding that the move is aimed at benefiting from nuclear program for peaceful purposes, particularly in generating electricity and improving medical and industrial services.

Addressing the First Committee on "Disarmament and International Security" during the 64th Session of the UN General Assembly, the UAE's Permanent Representative to the UN, Ahmed Al-Jarman, outlined his country's stance on current development on global security. He said the holding of the present 64th session of the General Assembly coincides with a number of positive developments and encouraging initiatives which have taken place in the area of disarmament, most notably of which is the agreement reached in the Disarmament Conference held last May on the program of work of the Conference after a decade of deadlock.

"Other positive developments included the joint understanding reached between the Governments of the USA and Russian Federation last July on the Strategic Offensive Reductions Treaty, which was reflected in the two historical addresses given by the American President Barack Obama before this General Assembly and the Security Council Summit held few days ago. They included firm commitments and assurances on the intention of the United States Administration to pursue its new approach for reducing the existing nuclear arsenals with a view to reducing their risks and threats to the peoples of the world and the future of humanity," he stated, adding that the UAE welcomes these positive developments including the Security Council resolution 1887 which was issued in its recent summit.

"This resolution will strengthen all relevant resolutions of the General Assembly and of the review conferences of the Non-proliferation treaty which all aimed at creating a world free from weapons of mass destruction, particularly nuclear weapons," he further stated.

He said his country is optimistic at the two initiatives recently announced by President Obama and aimed at holding an international conference next April on securing vulnerable nuclear materials, and its endeavours to reach an agreement with the Russian Federation on reducing nuclear warheads and their launchers at the two countries. "In this context, we reiterate that all these important efforts and endeavours cannot replace the required reductions in nuclear weapons in the two countries in complete transparency and in order to achieve their ultimate goal of total elimination. This will systematically contribute to strengthening multilateral international cooperation in this area and will encourage non-nuclear states to abandon their relentless pursuit to acquire these dangerous weapons. It will also strengthen the non-proliferation system, particularly after decades of living in distressing climate of escalated military confrontations and arms race," he noted.

"We therefore, call upon all states, particularly nuclear states, to demonstrate the necessary flexibility and political will and abide by the principle of multilateralism in their current negotiations on disarmament and on the work of the 2010 Review Conference on the non-proliferation Treaty, which coincides with the fortieth anniversary of opening the door for the signature of this Treaty. In this context, we emphasize our support to the 5-point plan presented by the Secretary-General of the United Nations, and we call for focusing our current discussions on the following:

1) Achieving tangible progress in the areas of nuclear disarmament and non-proliferation in all its aspects. This requires methodological and comprehensive agreement among all nuclear states on eliminating their strategic military arsenals within a specific timeframe, in accordance with their legal obligations stipulated in the treaties and protocols on disarmament and non-proliferation of nuclear weapons. In this context, we support the proposal for holding an international conference at the earliest to identify ways of eliminating nuclear dangers and develop an agreement on a program for gradual and ultimate elimination of these weapons.

2) Initiating serious and unconditional negotiations that would ultimately lead to reaching an international agreement on a fissile material treaty.

3) Supporting the ongoing efforts aimed at bringing the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty (CTBT) into force as soon as possible, and promoting the implementation of the Convention on the Prohibition of the Development, Production and Stockpiling of Bacteriological (Biological) and Toxin Weapons and on Their Destruction. In this context, we are satisfied at the general atmosphere in which the recent conference on Facilitating the Entry into Force of the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty was held in the UN.

4) Strengthening the efforts aimed at developing an effective and unconditional international instrument that provides the necessary safeguards for the non-nuclear states against the use of existing nuclear arsenals and other weapons of mass destruction in one part, and ensure the natural and inalienable right of states to conduct research on the production and use of nuclear energy for peaceful and development purposes on the other part. This would be in the context of full cooperation with the International Atomic Energy Agency, without any discrimination, and in accordance with article 1, 2 and 3 of the Non-proliferation Treaty.

In this regard, we would like to refer to the law issued by the United Arab Emirates Government regarding the peaceful uses of nuclear energy. This law emphasises the peaceful nature of the nuclear program of the UAE which will become operational in 2017, and implemented with international support and under the supervision of the International Atomic Energy Agency, in order to ensure its safe use, particularly in areas of power generation and development of medical and industrial services.

The program will also be implemented in full transparency and in a manner which does not harm the environment and ensures public safety. All these factors will make this program an optimal model for possessing nuclear energy for peaceful uses."

He pointed out that security is a legitimate right of all states of the world without exception. He said efforts to ensure security are not only limited to addressing prohibited strategic armament, but also include the strengthening of international cooperation mechanisms in other equally important areas such as armed violence, trafficking, illicit arms trade, including small or light weapons, and the need to protect dangerous materials in order to prevent their fall into the hands of irresponsible or outlaw groups.

"Efforts also include enhancing cooperation in areas of peacekeeping and preventive diplomacy, which would require the positive cooperation of all states and their full compliance to all principles and provisions of international law and also to the standards set by the Charter and other resolutions, conventions and programs of work of the relevant UN bodies and committees which aim at addressing such issues. This would contribute to the confidence-building measures and promote peaceful co-existence among all states and geographical regions," he added.

He noted that the UAE had always followed balanced and steady internal and external policies based on mutual cooperation with all countries in accordance with the principles of the UN Charter and international law, particularly those relating to the promotion of mutual respect, good neighbourliness, non-intervention in internal affairs, non-violence, peaceful solutions, and also in supporting justice and international stability and peace.

"The UAE affirms that achievement of peace and stability in the Middle East and Arab Gulf region cannot be achieved with the continued occupation policies, escalated military confrontations and pursuits to acquire nuclear weapons and other weapons of mass destruction which all definitely lead to creating dangerous security imbalances in the region. Therefore, we reiterate that the achievement of regional and international security and stability requires promotion of dialogue and peaceful solutions in solving regional differences. It also requires prioritising public interests including security, stability and development and the need to reach strategic agreements that would enhance the creation of zones free from nuclear weapons and weapons of mass destruction.

"In this connection, we also call upon the international community to exert pressure on Israel to accede to the Non-proliferation treaty and subject all its nuclear facilities to the supervision of the International Atomic Energy Agency in accordance with the resolutions of international legitimacy and the resolution on the Middle East issued by the 1995 review conference. We also call upon all concerned parties to stop providing scientific, technical and financial assistance used in developing the Israeli nuclear armaments for their threatening impact on the peace process in the region and on the security and stability of its peoples," he stated.

"As for the nuclear program of Iran, we look forward to further continuation of negotiations between west countries and the Islamic Republic of Iran, hoping that a comprehensive peaceful settlement for this issue is reached soon. We also call upon Iran to cooperate with the IAEA and Security Council in this regard, in order to maintain the security and stability of the peoples of the region," he further stated.

Concluding his statement, Al-Jarman emphasised that the efforts aimed at improving the effectiveness of the first committee must focus on strengthening its main priorities with regard to addressing the danger of proliferation of weapons of mass destruction and ending the doctrine of nuclear deterrence, particularly in areas of conflicts and tensions. "We also hope that our deliberations in this committee will lead to a consensus that would contribute to enhancing the effectiveness of disarmament and non-proliferation measures and help in achieving security, peace, stability and development at regional and international levels," he stated. - Emirates News Agency, WAM


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