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CTBTO hopes for Belarus' assistance in promoting CTBT signature, ratification

Politics 19.04.2017 | 12:26

MINSK, 19 April (BelTA) – The Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty Organization (CTBTO) counts on Belarus' assistance in promoting the signature and ratification of this instrument by all countries and facilitating its entry into force, Executive Secretary of the Preparatory Commission of the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty Organization Lassina Zerbo told the media on 19 April, BelTA has learned.

“The Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty was developed 20 years ago. It has not yet entered into force as eight states have not signed or ratified it. Belarus maintains bilateral relations with some of these countries. I hope that these bilateral contacts will help the treaty take effect,” said Lassina Zerbo.

The head of the international organization met with Belarus' Minister of Foreign Affairs Vladimir Makei on 19 April. “Belarus is an important player in nuclear non-proliferation. We know that your country renounced nuclear weapons some 20 years ago. We have discussed the matter with Vladimir Makei today,” he said.

According to the executive secretary, some countries ignore the Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty for national security reasons. “I think that contacts with some countries (in this case, the contacts of Belarus with India and Pakistan) will help us have the treaty signed or ratified by all the countries,” he said.

As for the Korean Peninsula, Lassina Zerbo believes that the situation can be settled at the negotiating table only. “Dialogue is the main way to solve the problem. If we manage to bring North Korea to the negotiating table and persuade it that the signing and ratification of the treaty do not mean any threat to their regime, they will agree to continue cooperation in the area. I think that Belarus can also contribute to this” he said.

Executive Secretary of the Preparatory Commission of the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty Organization (CTBTO) Lassina Zerbo is in Belarus on a visit from 18 to 20 April. Lassina Zerbo is set to hold a series of high-level meetings and participate in the roundtable organized by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs on confidence-building measures in the field of non-proliferation and disarmament. An exchange of views will be held on the CTBTO's future priorities and measures for strengthening the international nuclear non-proliferation regime.

It is expected that the event will be attended by representatives of the Belarusian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, government bodies, academic community and international organizations, including the UN and the EU, and also foreign diplomats.

Lassina Zerbo is also scheduled to visit the CTBTO PrepCom National Data Center at the Belarusian Emergencies Ministry and deliver a lecture to students of the Belarusian State University.

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