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21 Nov 2016

Belarus remains committed to nuclear disarmament goals

MINSK, 21 November (BelTA) – Belarus has demonstrated its strong commitment to nuclear disarmament goals. Belarusian Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs, Belarus’ representative on the IAEA Board of Governors Valentin Rybakov made the statement during the latest session of the IAEA Board of Governors in Vienna, the press service of the Belarusian Ministry of Foreign Affairs told BelTA.

In his speech Valentin Rybakov drew attention of those present to the 20th anniversary since the removal of nuclear weapons from Belarus after the USSR collapse. The Belarusian Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs noted that on 26 November 1996 Belarus rejected its possession of a considerable stockpile of nuclear weapons without any preliminary conditions and provisos. By doing so, Belarus indicated its adherence to peace and security. In essence the move determined the fashion of consequent processes in the area of nuclear disarmament in the post-Soviet space.

In his speech Valentin Rybakov stressed that despite the costs and complexity of these processes in the early 1990s Belarus demonstrated resolution and strong adherence to nuclear disarmament goals when the country decided to remove the Soviet nuclear weapons and join the Nuclear Weapons Non-Proliferation Treaty as a country free of nuclear weapons.

In line with the obligations stipulated by the Nuclear Weapons Non-Proliferation Treaty Belarus signed a comprehensive safeguards agreement with the International Atomic Energy Agency and put all the available nuclear materials under the IAEA’s guarantees. A state system to record and control the circulation of nuclear materials has been created and is being constantly improved. Belarus consistently supports the IAEA’s actions meant to fulfill the comprehensive safeguards agreements in accordance with the Nuclear Weapons Non-Proliferation Treaty. Belarus also supports the Agency’s bid to improve the system and operational methods in accordance with the legally binding agreements signed with the member states.

Apart from that, Valentin Rybakov said he believes that a consistent and realistic approach to nuclear disarmament matters remains the only possible way of achieving tangible progress in building a safer world.

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