“With the international spotlight shining on Tehran’s atomic ambitions, United Nations Secretary-General Kofi Annan has appealed for a long-term and visionary approach to the problem of nuclear arms proliferation.
“Today’s headlines concern Iran – rightly so, for basic treaty obligations and commitments are at stake,” he said in London on Tuesday evening, stressing that for signatories of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT), the right to develop nuclear energy is conditional on the obligation not to build or acquire nuclear weapons, and to comply with standards set and monitored by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA). “But when we step back from the headlines, it should be clear that we cannot continue to lurch from crisis to crisis, until the regime is buried beneath a cascade of nuclear proliferation,” he told an audience at the United Nations Association of the United Kingdom at Central Hall in Westminster.
He lamented missed opportunities to strengthen the foundations of the NPT regime, by agreeing on more robust IAEA inspections, saying: ‘We cannot afford any more such squandered chances.” [Read more]
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