Kassym-Jomart Tokayev addresses U.N. lunchtime seminar

Kassym-Jomart Tokayev, United Nations Under-Secretary-General, addressed a lunchtime seminar at the U.N. on Wednesday about exploring avenues to address the stalemate in the Conference on Disarmament on.

"The prolonged stalemate in the Conference on Disarmament is a cause for deep concern for the entire international community," Tokayev said. "The Secretary-General, Mr. Ban Ki-moon, considers the impasse unacceptable and has repeatedly called upon the Conference to resume substantive work. Today, I reiterate that call."

The Conference on Disarmament is a forum that was made by the international community to negotiate multilateral arms control and disarmament agreements. The CD is not a formal U.N. entity, but it is linked to the U.N. through the personal representative of the U.N. Secretary-General.

Tokayev said he believes that a fissile material cut-off treaty is the next step for moving towards a world free of nuclear weapons. He went on to say that a treaty like this would need to have both vertical and horizontal proliferation, like the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty has.

"Nevertheless, despite our collective frustration over the lack of progress, we must continue to pursue genuinely multilateral solutions, including among the non-like-minded," Tokayev said. "This is where we put multilateralism to the test. And the CD is the one instrument we currently have for that pursuit. If we allow it to be torn down, we will only create an even greater void, with very limited opportunities to put in its place a meaningful mechanism."