19 October 2012
Statement by Mr. Reza Najafi
Director for Disarmament and International Security
Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Islamic Republic of Iran
On “Nuclear Weapons”
At the Thematic Discussion of the 67th Session of the First Committee
New York, 19 October 2012
In The Name of God, the Most Compassionate, the Most Merciful
The Islamic Republic of Iran associates itself with the Statement made by Indonesia on behalf of the Non-Aligned Movement on this cluster.
The persistent lack of progress in the field of nuclear disarmament, the continued existence of thousands of deployed and non-deployed strategic and non-strategic nuclear weapons around the world remains the serious source of threat to the international peace and security and the very survival of human civilization.
While Nuclear-Weapon States have the legal obligation for the total elimination of nuclear weapons, in our view, the continued non-compliance of such States with this obligation, with no doubt, not only has jeopardized the international peace and security but also has undermined the object and purpose, as well as relevance, integrity and credibility of the NPT as the cornerstone of nuclear disarmament and non-proliferation efforts.
The Islamic Republic of Iran fully endorses the position of NAM States Parties to the NPT that not only any use or threat of use of nuclear weapons would be in violation of the principles of the UN Charter and international law, in particular international humanitarian law, but also the mere possession of nuclear weapons is inconsistent with the principles of international humanitarian law.
My delegations is of the view that the Nuclear Posture Review of certain nuclear-weapon States, as well as the NATO’s 2010 “Strategic Concept” which justify the use or threat of use of such inhumane weapons, are clear cases of non-compliance with relevant legal obligations and a setback to nuclear disarmament and non-proliferation of nuclear weapons.
There is no doubt that the decision to modernize nuclear weapons under any pretext such as reliability and spending billions of dollars to construct new nuclear facilities runs counter to the obligation of the nuclear-weapon States on nuclear disarmament and represents obvious non-compliance with article VI of the NPT. We strongly call upon the Nuclear-Weapon-States in particular the US to honor their obligations under the NPT and immediately cease any kind of development and research on nuclear weapons and any modernization of nuclear weapons and their facilities, refrain from making any threat of use of nuclear weapons against Non-Nuclear-Weapon-States, withdraw their nuclear weapons from the territories of other countries, and stop maintaining their nuclear warheads in the trigger-alert situation.
It is ironic that, instead of committing to their legal obligations, certain nuclear-weapon States like France that are motivated by the cold war mentality, had made irrational statements of threatening against non-nuclear weapon States. Furthermore, French officials announced that they will develop new nuclear plans to modernize nuclear arsenals and would spend billions of euros on this plan until 2020. This policy is in clear disregard of obligations of France to respect the practical steps agreed to in the Review Conferences as well as the object and purpose of the NPT.
Countries like the US, UK, France, the Nederland as well as representatives of the European Union and Canadian irresponsible regime, having nuclear weapons or being under nuclear umbrella that were deadly silent in this meeting on the danger of Israeli clandestine nuclear weapon program are not eligible to make judgment about peaceful safeguarded nuclear program of the others. This hypocrisy and double-standard shows that being outside of the NPT would be rewarded but being inside and have all nuclear activities under IAEA safeguards are punishable.
It is a source of grave concern that in violation of obligations under Article I of the NPT, not only hundreds of nuclear weapons and their means of delivery have been and are still being deployed in the territories of European Union but also air forces of certain Non-Nuclear-Weapon-States, EU members, have been trained to deliver these weapons under the cover of military alliances. By transferring hundreds of nuclear weapons to certain non-nuclear-weapon States under the NATO umbrella, the United States, for a long time, has been in non‑compliance with its obligations under the NPT, which provides in its article I “not to transfer to any recipient whatsoever nuclear weapons”.
Nuclear-Weapon-States, especially US, UK and France, instead of threatening others and crying wolf about other countries’ peaceful activities, shall fully comply with their obligations under Article I of the NPT by refraining from nuclear-sharing, under any pretext, including security arrangements, bilateral agreements or military alliance. Likewise those members of the European Union such as the Nederland, that are hosting tens of nuclear warheads in violation of the NPT, must end their non-compliance with the Treaty and decide to immediately remove such nuclear weapons from their territories. European Union, should also begin addressing compliance issues from its members first, in particular non-compliance of France with Articles I and VI of the NPT.
France that has tried to create smokescreen about its non-compliance, resorted to disseminating wrong and deceptive information about the others. As an example, contrary to French misleading claim, Iran’s 20% enrichment activity under IAEA full monitoring aimed at providing needed fuel for Tehran Research Reactor to enable it to continue producing medical isotopes for more than one million patients with hard diseases like cancer. Therefore this activity is purely for humanitarian purposes and plausible.
Furthermore, certain Nuclear-Weapons States, by transferring nuclear technologies and weapons-grade materials to non-NPT parties, in clear violation of their obligations under the NPT have also contributed to the emergence of new nuclear weapons possessors, in particular in the volatile region of the Middle East, where the nuclear arsenals and clandestine nuclear facilities of the Zionist regime, which has occupied the territories of several countries and invaded, without exception, all its neighbors as well as committing aggression against other countries, is the most serious threat to the region and beyond.
There is no source of insecurity and instability in the Middle East, other than the Israeli regime which sitting on hundreds of nuclear warheads, audaciously tries to identify redlines, in the form of childish cartoon, for peaceful nuclear activities of others. This regime, created on the basis of terrorism, confident to its big patron, the U.S. and its other western supporters, has crossed all redlines during its short lifetime and committed all crimes, from crime of aggression to war crimes and crimes against humanity, and still continues to threaten other countries.
Therefore, any transfer of nuclear-related equipment, information, material and facilities, resources or devices and the extension of assistance in the nuclear, scientific or technological fields to the nuclear weapons capability of the Zionist regime is the violation of the NPT obligations and therefore must be stopped immediately.
As a fundamental part of the package agreed within the framework of the NPT in 1968, nuclear disarmament is the highest priority on the disarmament agenda, and the total elimination of nuclear weapons is the only absolute guarantee against the use or threat of use of such weapons. In this context, the Islamic Republic of Iran continues to fully support the NAM position on the need for negotiations on a phased program for the complete elimination of nuclear weapons within a specified timeline, including for the start of negotiations in the Conference on Disarmament, based on a balanced and comprehensive program of work, for the conclusion of a legally binding instrument on nuclear weapon to prohibit, once and for all, the possession, development, stockpile and use or threat to use of nuclear weapons by any country and under any circumstances and provide for the total destruction of such inhumane weapons by 2025.
In the past few years, certain Nuclear-Weapon-States, through false and misleading propaganda, have tried to equate nuclear energy with nuclear weapons. This false misinformation has been highlighted, while all the nuclear activities of the Non-Nuclear-Weapon-States parties to the NPT are under the full-scope safeguards of the International Atomic Energy Agency, and they have already foregone the nuclear option, therefore pose no threat to others.
In conclusion, Mr. Chairman, let me reiterate once again that the Islamic Republic of Iran as a victim of the weapons of mass destruction, would pursue vigorously the goal of a world free from weapons of mass destruction, but will never submit to the intimidation and pressure.
I thank you Mr. Chairman.