THE OFFICE OF THE PRESIDENT OF MONGOLIA, PUBLIC RELATIONS & COMMUNICATIONS DIVISION

www.president.mn

2013-09-27




STATEMENT BY H.E.MR. ELBEGDORJ TSAKHIA, PRESIDENT OF MONGOLIA, AT THE HIGH-LEVEL MEETING ON NUCLEAR DISARMAMENT



New York 26 September, 2013

Mr. President,
Mr. Secretary-General,
Excellences,
Ladies and Gentlemen,

I would like to ask the Secretary of this meeting to have the complete version of this statement circulated as an official document.

Mr. President,

I am honored and privileged to address this important meeting and share my thoughts on some of the issues under discussion and thus contribute to sending a clear and strong message on the need for taking resolute measures aimed at promoting a world without nuclear weapons.

We have gathered here today because we all support the bold vision of a world free of nuclear weapons and believe that it can be achieved with persistent efforts, mutual understanding, hard negotiations and close cooperation of all members of the international community, especially the nuclear-weapon states.

Nuclear disarmament has multiple aspects each one of which needs careful consideration. Due to the time constraint, I shall briefly focus on some issues.

One. Banning of nuclear weapons. Mongolia supports the Secretary-General’s five point proposal on nuclear disarmament. Hence it agrees that one of the most urgent issues that needs to be addressed is banning of nuclear weapons. It believes that it is high time to start negotiations on the nuclear weapons convention, a preliminary draft of which has already been circulated to member states. The results of the meetings of the Open Ended Working Group and the humanitarian effects of nuclear weapons clearly underline the urgency of such an action. In this connection I join the call to designate the 26th September as the International Day for the Total Elimination of Nuclear Weapons.

Two. Disarmament negotiations and campaigns. It is regrettable that the sole multilateral disarmament negotiating forum – the Conference on Disarmament - has not been able to live up to its expectation. Though consultations are underway to revitalize its work, the CD still remains paralyzed. The international community should not be at the mercy of individual states in matters that affect vital interests of all. That is why international practice has demonstrated the indispensable role of coalitions of states and of NGOs, when the disarmament machinery fails, as exemplified by the successful conclusion of land-mines convention in 1997 and of the cluster munitions convention in 2008.

Three. Nuclear-weapon-free zones. Establishment of nuclear-weapon-free zones has proven to be an effective regional measure of non-proliferation and disarmament. The existing zones need to be strengthened and measures taken to promote the establishment of new zones, including in the Middle East and in Northeast Asia. Since the latter have lingering disputes, establishment of zones would not be easy. But that should not deter or discourage us.

Establishment NWFZs has produced a rich wealth of experience that would be useful in establishing new ones. Therefore Mongolia is proposing that the United Nations undertake a second comprehensive study on the establishment NWFZs in all its aspects, since the first such practically useful study had been undertaken 38 years ago and proved useful in establishing the above zones.

Four. Mongolia’s nuclear-weapon-free status. In line with a vision of a nuclear-weapon-free world, over 20 years ago Mongolia, situated between two nuclear-weapon states, has declared itself a single-state nuclear-weapon-free zone and has been working hard to institutionalize that status. At the national level in 2000 it adopted a legislation that clearly defined the status and had criminalized acts that would violate it. In September 2012 the five nuclear-weapon states have signed a joint declaration that not only recognized Mongolia’s nuclear-weapon-free status, but also committed them to respect that status and not contribute to any act that would violate it. Thus we have a pledge by all P5 that Mongolia will not be pressured to accept any part of system of nuclear weapons. Hence it will not be allowed to be used as a pawn in future geopolitical competition and great power rivalry. Stable, non-aligned and re-assured Mongolia will be a zone of confidence and stability, a territory which will not be used to harm interests of others. Mongolia’s experience inspires and demonstrates that even small states can contribute to promoting the vision of a world free of nuclear weapons.

Five. Northeast Asia. As a country with first hand experience in ensuring security primarily by political and diplomatic means, Mongolia is prepared, on an informal basis, to work with the countries of Northeast Asia to see if and how a nuclear-weapon-free zone could be established in the region. Though we know well that that would not be easy and would require courage, political will and perseverance, it is doable, if not right away. In the meantime, steps should be taken to promote greater confidence. With that in mind, last March I have proposed to start the “Ulaanbaatar Dialogue on Northeast Asian Security" and have invited the countries of the region to an open dialogue so as to gradually build confidence in the region.

Mr. President, Let us spare no effort to move forward nuclear disarmament. Today's momentous gathering should give the needed boost. I thank you.