President Nursultan Nazarbaev of Kazakhstan has called for stronger international efforts to prevent the spread of nuclear weapons and reduce existing stockpiles.
Speaking at the opening of the United Nation's General Assembly meeting in New York on September 21, Nazarbaev said that the world "faces a paradoxical situation" in that "some states are allowed to possess and upgrade nuclear weapons while others are strictly forbidden to be engaged even in research and development."
Nazarbaev described this situation as "unfair, disproportionate, and dishonest."
The Kazakh president called for an expansion of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty's legal framework and an increase in the ability of the UN's International Atomic Energy Agency to oversee compliance by countries who have signed the treaty.
Nazarbaev said all states, especially those that possess nuclear weapons, should aim to reduce global stockpiles, including their own.
The NPT, as the treaty is known, has been signed by 189 countries, five of which have nuclear weapons: Britain, China, France, Russia, and the United States.
Four countries that have not signed the NPT are either known or thought to have nuclear weapons capability: India, Pakistan, North Korea, and Israel.
with agency reports