Deputy Foreign Minister of Belarus gives address during Conference on Disarmament

During the Conference on Disarmament on Tuesday Deputy Foreign Minister of Belarus Valentin Rybakov gave an address about the issues of disarmament in Belarus.

In his address, Rybakov said that international security, arms control, disarmament and non-proliferation were always key points for the country of Belarus and its foreign policy. He went on to say that since the independence of his country, Belarus has fought for a nuclear free world by contributing to the cause of disarmament. Rybakov said he hopes to see the Conference on Disarmament fulfill its purpose.

Rybakov went on to explain the history of his country and disarmament. Belarus acceded to the Non-Proliferation Treaty as a non-nuclear state 20 years ago and by the end of 1996 completed the removal of all nuclear weapons from its territory, which made it completely comply with Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty and Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty on the limitation and reduction of nuclear strategic offensive arms.

Rybakov turned his attention to the general field of disarmament and the Conference on Disarmament. He said the past decade was a lost period for disarmament, one where there was a climate of mistrust and suspicion, and that the key to restarting the Conference did not lay in rules of procedure, but rather in breaking this aura of mistrust.

Rybakov concluded his address by saying that Belarus is ready to support a comprehensive strategy of the Convention on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons, along with the step-by-step approach of an early start of negotiations on a treaty banning the production of fissile material for nuclear weapons.