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State Department Official Says Banning Nuclear Weapons Is “Unrealistic”

In Democracy, Environment, Human rights, Justice, Nuclear abolition, Nuclear Guardianship, Nuclear Policy, Peace on September 1, 2016 at 9:56 pm

By John Liang, The Insider, August 30, 2016

An outright ban on nuclear weapons is “unrealistic,” a State Department official said this week.

A United Nations “Open-ended Working Group on nuclear weapons” recently completed a report which “recommended with widespread support for the General Assembly to convene a conference in 2017, open to all States, with the participation and contribution of international organizations and civil society, to negotiate a legally-binding instrument to prohibit nuclear weapons, leading towards their total elimination.”

That report was rejected by the United States.

“The United States calls on all states to reject unrealistic efforts to ban nuclear weapons,” Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Arms Control, Verification and Compliance Anita Friedt said in an Aug. 29 speech in Astana, Kazakhstan, adding: “The OEWG final report and efforts to institute a legal ban on nuclear weapons fail to take account of the international security environment and will neither lead to the elimination of nuclear weapons nor uphold the principle of undiminished security for all.

“So, together let us reject division and instead agree that we share a common goal and recommit to the roadmap we are on, one that has proven results,” she continued, adding: “Together we can make true the hope expressed by President Obama in Hiroshima: to refocus ‘the wonders of science on improving life, rather than destroying it.'”

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