If a nation does not know its history, if the country loses its history, then its citizens have nowhere to go.
Mirzhakyp Dulatuly

Kazakhstan and initiatives on World Free of Nuclear Weapons. Part II.

In 1991 the Semipalatinsk nuclear test site had been closed down, and Kazakhstan’s further policy and way towards building nuclear-free and safe world was identified.

We should also mention the application of Kazakhstan, which it has applied this year, on placement of the fuel bank for low-enriched uranium (LEU), thereby supporting the Agency’s initiative to ensure a guaranteed nuclear fuel. Referring to Secretary of State of the RK K.Saudabayev Kazakhstan has several arguments favoring its candidacy to host the fuel bank, such as stable socio-political situation and balanced foreign policy, active participation in global non-proliferation and nuclear weapons reduction, existing infrastructure of the former Semipalatinsk nuclear test site. The fuel bank for low-enriched uranium (LEU) will keep a guaranteed supply of nuclear fuel.

It is also necessary to note the participation of Kazakhstan in promotion of the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty (CTBT), which aims to strengthen the nuclear test ban regime that was injected by the Treaty Banning Nuclear Weapon Tests in the Atmosphere, in Outer Space and Under Water in 1963. The CTBT have been either not signed or ratified by nine countries, without whose participation it is not fully effective.

In the framework of cooperation between Kazakhstan and CTBTO several projects have already been implemented, such as establishing five monitoring stations that made a significant contribution in identifying and assessing the nuclear tests carried out by the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea in 2006 and 2008, as well as implementation of Integrated Field Exercise 2008 — IFE08.

Within the confines of implementation of NPT and CTBT in Semipalatinsk in 2006 the Treaty on a Nuclear-Weapon-Free Zone in Central Asia was signed. According to the Treaty, States Parties assumed the commitments to ban the production, purchase and placing of the nuclear weapons and its components or other explosive devices on their territories. At the same time, exercising of the energy for peaceful purposes is not prohibited by the Treaty.

There are 5 main nuclear-weapon-free zones, including zone in Latin America and the Caribbean established by the Treaty of Tlatelolko; zone in South-East Asia established by the Treaty of Bangkok; zone in Africa established by the Treaty of Pelindabada; zone in South Pacific established by the Treaty of Rarotonga; zone in Central Asia established by the Treaty of Semipalatinsk and also Mongolia announced its nuclear-weapon-free status on the 47th session of the General Assembly of the UN in 1992. Among all created zones, only Treaty of Tlatelolko could receive the negative guarantees from the nuclear powers.

Regarding to Central Asian nuclear-weapon-free zone, which includes Kazakhstan, we should mention its features: this is the first zone in Northern Hemisphere, it has a common long-lasting border with two nuclear states — with Russia and China; on the territory of one of the states parties — here in Kazakhstan the Semipalatinsk nuclear test site was operating during 40 years. That’s why the negotiations on the negative guarantees from the nuclear states are being actively led in the purpose to provide the security of five countries of the zone.

By the initiative of President N. Nazarbayev on the 2nd December 2009 on the 64th session of the GA UN the resolution 64/35 was adopted. It declared the 29 August the International Day against Nuclear Tests. Beginning from 2010 under the auspices of the UN a various events were carried out.

During the visit of Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, standing on ‘ground zero’ of the former Semipalatinsk nuclear test site, he said: «In 1991, President Nazarbayev showed extraordinary leadership by closing this Semipalatinsk nuclear test site and banishing nuclear weapons from Kazakhstan. It was a visionary step, a true declaration of independence. Today, this site stands as a symbol of disarmament and hope for the future… Now we have a good reason to believe that the promise of Semipalatinsk — the abolition of nuclear weapons — will become reality».

Beginning from the day of Independence of Kazakhstan and until today, during these 20 years, Kazakhstan is still keeping the bright example of Nuclear Leadership. Holding in October 2011 the International Forum for a Nuclear-Weapon-Free World shows the adherence of Kazakhstan to a regime of nuclear disarmament and non-proliferation.

President N.Nazarbayev pointed several problems existing in the regime of non-proliferation, such as nuclear security in the regions, including South Asia and the Middle East, the threat of hitting of atomic technologies in international terrorists’ hands; stalemate with the entry into force of the CTBT; problem of nonparticipation in global nuclear disarmament movement of ‘nuclear club’ states, as well as the states with de-facto nuclear weapons; asymmetric norms of NPT; misbalance in the issues of compliance of the security of peaceful atomic energy regime.

As a result of the Forum the Declaration on a Nuclear-Weapon-Free World was adopted. It gave a new impulse to the relay of Peace and became the step towards elaboration of the Universal Declaration on Nuclear-Weapon-Free World.

«Nuclear-weapon-free world — is not Utopia. It is the reality existing on the significant part of the world» said Nursultan Nazarbayev during his speech on the opening ceremony of International Forum for Nuclear-Weapon-Free World. We can confidently speak about the world free of nuclear weapons, not only because we believe in it, but also because we have already begun to build it.


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