President Blaise Compaoré of Burkina Faso addresses CTBTO

President of Burkina Faso, Blaise Compaoré, addressed the highest decision-making body of the Preparatory Commission for the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty Organization to honor the appointment of a Burkina Faso native in a leadership position.

Executive Secretary-elect Lassina Zerbo of Burkina Faso will be succeeding Executive Secretary Tibor Tóth in the CTBTO. His term will begin July 31. As President of Zerbo's native country, Compaoré was invited to the induction ceremony and also received a tour of the control room of the International Data Centre by Zerbo and Tóth.

During the ceremony, Zerbo addressed representatives from each of the treaty Member States, outlining his vision for his term and the direction in which the organization will go. President Compaoré also addressed the Member States, thanking it for allowing developing nations to play key roles since its adoption of the treaty.

Burkina Faso signed the CTBT on September 27, 1996 and was ratified in 2002. Since its adoption, Burkina Faso has been invited to play an active role in the verification of the CTBT and subsequent programs, including such subjects as disaster warning and scientific research.

During his address, Compaoré thanked the organization for the opportunity to take part in decision making and urged the international community to sign and ratify the treaty, "in the name of peace and security for humanity." He also thanked the CTBTO for appointing Zerbo, as a significant accomplishment for Burkina Faso and Africa.

"You have placed your trust in Mr. Lassina Zerbo to head, as Executive Secretary, the Preparatory Commission for the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty Organization," Compaoré said. "I thank you for such a high distinction for a son of Burkina Faso and of Africa."