Science and Technology Conference advocates for the CTBT
"By engaging the scientific community in strengthening its own abilities, the CTBTO advances its vital work of preventing and deterring further nuclear tests," U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said in a video message to the conference attendees. "I renew my call for the entry into force of the CTBT."
More than 750 participants representing 100 countries around the world attended the conference in Vienna at the Hofburg Imperial Palace between June 17 and 21. Hundreds of scientists attended the event, including scientists from countries that have not formally endorsed the CTBT such as China, Egypt, India, Iran, Pakistan, Israel and the U.S.
The purpose of the conference was to empower scientists to go home and use the respect and trust they have from the community to advocate for the CTBT. Keynote lecturers argued that science and technology play a huge role in helping achieve nuclear disarmament and non-proliferation.
"The Science and Technology conference series is a process; it provides an opportunity to integrate results of scientific research into operation to improve the CTBT verification regime," Lassina Zerbo, CTBTO executive secretary-elect and project executive for the conference this year, said.
Former U.S. Under Secretary of State Ellen Tauscher said scientists hold more trust from the public than politicians. For this reason, the conference focused on empowering scientists to strengthen public support for the treaty, to create a world without nuclear weapons.
"We need a new Reykjavik but without the Cold War," CTBTO Executive Secretary Tibor Tóth said.