UNITED NATIONS, Oct. 2 (Xinhua) -- UN General Assembly President Volkan Bozkir warned on Friday that global tensions are straining the nuclear disarmament architecture.
The United Nations was born out of the devastation of nuclear weapons and the General Assembly was committed to nuclear disarmament from its inception. Yet nuclear weapons continue to pose a grave threat to international peace and security today, Bozkir told a high-level UN meeting to mark the International Day for the Total Elimination of Nuclear Weapons, which falls on Sept. 26.
The only sure way to eliminate this threat is to eliminate the weapons themselves. There is no alternative, he said. "It is therefore unfortunate that the architecture developed over decades to support the goals of disarmament and enhance security is under significant strain with rising global tensions."
Parties have withdrawn from nuclear-related agreements and others are set to expire. Some member states have threatened to restart nuclear testing, he noted.
"Amid such challenges to the non-proliferation architecture, we must ensure efforts are focused on returning to the common goal of a world free of nuclear weapons through practical realizable goals and commensurate actions," he said.
"In this regard, I would like to draw your attention to the tools that are available to help us reach this goal. The Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons that was adopted in 2017 is the first multilateral legally binding instrument for nuclear disarmament to have been negotiated in 20 years."
This year also marks the 50th anniversary of the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT), which has been the cornerstone of the global disarmament and non-proliferation regime, he said.
He asked the states parties to the NPT, at the NPT Review Conference to be held next year, to explore ways to further the progress made thus far.
All states parties need to make the most of this opportunity to renew their commitments and engage in inclusive dialogue to take practical steps in nuclear disarmament, he said.
"Nuclear disarmament must remain a priority to all of us. We must continue to pursue our common goal of a world free of nuclear weapons. We cannot afford to waste any more time." Enditem