COMMEMORATING INTERNATIONAL DAY AGAINST NUCLEAR TESTS
The International Day against Nuclear Tests will be observed on 10 September at United Nations Headquarter. This year’s official opening ceremony, marked by an Informal Meeting, will be convened by the President of the 69th session of the General Assembly, Mr. Sam Kutesa, and organized in cooperation with the Permanent Mission of the Republic of Kazakhstan.
In its resolution 64/35, the General Assembly designated 29th August, as a day to commemorate against nuclear tests, as a result of the closing on that date in 1991, of Semipalatinsk in Kazakhstan, one of the largest nuclear weapon test sites in the world.
The sixth annual International Day against Nuclear Tests will showcase efforts of the United Nations and partners and other stakeholders, including Member States, intergovernmental and non-governmental organizations, academic institutions, youth networks and media in informing and educating on the importance of the nuclear weapon test ban with the aim of achieving worldwide security.
Around the globe, advocates for a nuclear-weapon-free world, will be organizing and participating in activities ranging from debates and exhibits to conferences and competitions to call attention to the urgent imperative for the international community to rally in support of banning nuclear weapons testing once and for all.
The opening ceremony will be followed by a High-Level Panel featuring experts in the field of arms control and non-proliferation. The Panel will focus on the theme of “Towards Zero: Resolving the Contradictions.” Speakers will present their observations and comments from their perspective on ways to promote progress and achieve common ground among different approaches towards nuclear disarmament and non-proliferation.
This year’s theme is especially apropos with regard to the outcome of the 2015 Review Conference of the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT) in which parties to the treaty could not agree on a consensus. In a statement delivered by Deputy Secretary-General Jan Eliasson to the NPT on behalf of the Secretary-General, he said, “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.” This failure to come to an agreement highlights the urgency of the situation and the need to promote cooperation within the international community towards advancing the goals of the NPT.
The Informal Meeting is open to all diplomats, think-tanks, the academic community, civil society and the media.
The complete programme line-up can be found here
For further information on the Day and on the nuclear tests-related issues, please go to www.un.org/en/no-nucleartests, which is available in all six UN official languages.
Contacts: United Nations Department of Public Information, Donna Cusumano, firstname.lastname@example.org; United Nations Office for Disarmament Affairs, Ewen Buchanan, email@example.com