Steps towards a nuclear-free world "seem to have stalled"

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UN Deputy Secretary-General Jan Eliasson.

It is deeply concerning that over the last five years, steps towards a nuclear-free world seem to have stalled, according to the UN Deputy Secretary-General.

On Monday, Jan Eliasson shared opening remarks on behalf of the UN chief at the 2015 Review Conference of the Parties to the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT).

The NPT is an international treaty that seeks to prevent the spread of nuclear weapons and to promote the peaceful uses of nuclear energy.

Cathrine Hasselberg reports.

 In the lead up to this year's conference on the Non-Proliferation Treaty taking place through 22 May, the UN received several petitions from civil society groups calling for the elimination of nuclear weapons.

 The UN Deputy Secretary-General said these petitions received millions of signatures from concerned citizens across the world.

 Jan Eliasson stressed that no other weapon has the potential to inflict such wanton destruction on our planet.

 Between 1990 and 2010, the international community took bold steps towards a nuclear weapon-free world.  I am deeply concerned that over the last five years this process seems to have stalled. It is especially troubling that recent developments indicate that the trend towards nuclear zero is reversing. Instead of progress towards new arms reduction agreements, we have allegations about destabilizing violations of existing agreements. 

 Mr Eliasson said that Iran proves that such challenges can be dealt with by diplomacy.

 He added that the conference must focus on seeking means to enable States to move forward on this issue with a shared vision and a shared purpose.

 Cathrine Hasselberg, United Nations. 

Duration: 1’11″

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