Kofi Annan cracks down on Russian and US wish not to cut nuclear weapons

According to Condoleezza Rice, USA's ability to restrain N.Korean nuclear ambition was obvious for everyone

The criticism from the UN Secretary General, Kofi Annan, who delivered his speech at the international UN conference devoted to the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (the conference was held in New York) was aimed against the USA, Russia and Iran. Mr. Annan believes that Russian and American government should abide by their obligations on the Treaty in a more efficient way or reduce the number of nuclear missiles from thousands to hundreds. Russian governmental officials have not released any comments in regard to Kofi Annan's criticism. Spokespeople for the Iranian authorities, however, blasted the UN Secretary General and stated that the Iranian government was determined to continue the national nuclear research.

The UN conference on the Non-Proliferation on Nuclear Weapons started in New York on Monday. The international discussion gathered representatives for 188 states from all over the word. The conference will last for a month. Konstantin Kosachev, the head of the parliamentary committee for international affairs, is the Russian spokesman in the discussion.

The Non-Proliferation Treaty was signed for the first time in 1968. One hundred and eighty-seven states have ratified the document since then. Representatives for all states participating in the treaty gather for international conferences every five year to analyze the situation with nuclear weapons on the globe.

Kofi Annan pointed out several extremely important issues, which participating states would have to take account of in their activities. Mr. Annan particularly addressed to Russia and the USA, the owners of nuclear arsenals, and urged the governments of the two countries to abide by their obligations in a more efficient way. In other words, Kofi Annan called upon the two superpowers to disarm. Mr. Annan implied that neither Russia, nor the USA was hurrying to part with their nuclear arsenals within the scope of agreements that the two countries achieved in Moscow in 2002. Russia and the USA agreed to cut the number of nuclear warheads by two-thirds during the ten-year period, i.e. by 2012. The plan stipulates that the countries will have to reduce the arsenals to 1700-2200 nukes within seven years.

The speech from Mr. Annan showed that the UN was concerned about the number of nuclear warheads, as well as about the organization of the reduction process too. According to the Treaty, the countries are supposed to grant access to international experts to control the reduction of nuclear warheads.

Kofi Annan also touched upon the issue of undermining confidence to the Non-Proliferation Treaty. The UN Secretary General said that the disarmament of five official nuclear powers (the USA, Russia, Great Britain, France and China) may become an emphatic example for other countries to decline the possession of nuclear weapons. Mr. Annan apparently was talking about other countries as well – Pakistan, India and Israel – that refused to ratify the Treaty despite the fact of their nuclear possessions (although the Israeli nuclear arsenal has not been officially confirmed yet).

Kofi Annan addressed to Iran and asked the Iranian government not to insist on the nation's nuclear program, but to concentrate on the international program connected with the exchange of nuclear fuel. The press secretary of the Iranian foreign Affairs Ministry said in return that Iran was determined to continue its activities in the field of nuclear technologies. The official specified that Iran would clarify all details of the work later, as Iranian nuclear specialists progress in their researches. Furthermore, Iran would start uranium-enrichment works only if they become vital for the nation. It is noteworthy that uranium-enrichment works can be viewed as the first step in the creation of an A-bomb.

The USA, Great Britain, France and Germany have already warned Tehran of imposing sanctions against Iran if the latter does not stop nuclear developments. As it can be seen now, Iran is not worried about it much.

Another scandal is likely to occur with another superpower, which supposedly possesses nuclear weapons too – North Korea. N. Korea persistently states that it has nuclear weapons in the arsenal, although Pyongyang refuses to present an official confirmation to it.

US Secretary of State, Condoleezza Rice, has recently released quite an unequivocal statement about North Korea. Ms. Rice stated that USA's ability to restrain N.Korean nuclear ambition was obvious for everyone. Furthermore, the USA has the potential to restrain this ambition in the entire Asian-Pacific region, Rice added.

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Author`s name Olga Savka