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16 OCTOBER 2009
RP PUSHES NUCLEAR DISARMAMENT, NONPROLIFERATION AGENDA
NEW YORK— Although the elimination of nuclear weapons will not happen overnight, the Philippines said it is convinced that the objective is within reach given recent positive developments in the field of nuclear disarmament and nonproliferation, Manila’s envoy to the United Nations said.
In his statement before the First Committee of the General Assembly, Ambassador Hilario G. Davide Jr., Philippine Permanent Representative to the United Nations, hailed the positive signals and developments on nuclear disarmament and non-proliferation, particularly the recent Security Council Summit chaired by United States President Barack Obama as well as statements of world leaders that have given prominence and importance to this issue.
“The Philippines welcomes such statements and pronouncements calling for a world free of nuclear weapons but it would welcome even more concrete action and definitive plans on how to achieve the objective of global disarmament,” Ambassador Davide said as he commended the Russian Federation and the United States for agreeing to have a follow-on agreement to the Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty.
Saying the present global political climate presents countries with the best opportunity to make progress towards disarmament and nonproliferation, the former Philippine Chief Justice, who is also Vice Chairman of the First Committee, said the international community must act in concert with all the political will it can muster to rid the world of nuclear weapons once and for all and save the planet and humanity.
“The Philippines calls on all other possessors of nuclear arms to take urgent steps to reduce and eventually eliminate their nuclear arsenals. The challenge is to develop a mechanism that will bring all possessors of nuclear arms into a multilateral undertaking that leads them to global nuclear disarmament,” the Filipino envoy said.
In his statement, Ambassador Davide said the Philippines supports the calls for irreversible and complete elimination of nuclear weapons under international supervision and is prepared to examine proposals for a phased process leading to the ultimate objective of achieving total nuclear disarmament and to secure the agreements under a nuclear convention.
“The Philippines subscribes to the view that there can be no peace without trust,” Ambassador Davide said, adding that the international community can only expect the possessors of nuclear arms to participate fully in a multilateral undertaking towards global nuclear disarmament should there be a climate of confidence and trust prevailing among them.
Ambassador Davide said that in order to foster a climate of confidence and trust, there should be a common understanding where all possessors of nuclear arms are coming from in terms of their respective stockpile of nuclear arsenals and delivery systems; the presence of a reliable and accurate reporting of action on global nuclear disarmament to an accepted international body or entity; and a mechanism enabling all to verify fully actions taken in pursuit of global nuclear disarmament.
“The Philippines submits that the elimination of nuclear weapons is the only guarantee against—or the only way to save humanity from—the use or threat of use of such weapons,” Ambassador Davide said. ###
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