Solomon Islands has supported a global call for the complete elimination of all Nuclear Weapons and other weapons of mass destruction at a High Level meeting on Nuclear Disarmament during the 68th UN General Assembly in New York.
Addressing the meeting today, Minister for Development Planning and Aid Coordination Connelly Sandakabatu said as a peace loving country, Solomon Islands join the world in seeking a world free of nuclear weapons while welcoming the convening of the High level Meeting on Nuclear disarmament.
He said the purpose of the United Nations is to preserve international peace and security and the meeting on nuclear disarmament gives all countries an opportunity, to reaffirm the global call to eliminate Nuclear weapons and all weapons of mass destruction.
Minister Sandakabatu pointed out that the pacific is a Nuclear Weapons Free Zone under the 1985 Rarotonga Treaty. The Treaty calls for no manufacture, no stationing and no testing of nuclear weapons in the South Pacific.
“My delegation welcomes other regions who have similarly established nuclear free zones. We have demonstrated our desire for peace and look forward to a world without nuclear weapons,” he told the meeting.
Leaders of the Pacific region also spoke passionately on the issue because three members with absolute powers within the United Nations organization have tested nuclear weapons both at atmospheric and underground level in the late 1940s to the 1960s.
“Nuclear tests have seen the relocated populations in the Pacific and populations continue to suffer from health effects including birth defects. Nuclear testing has also contaminated the environment. Knowledge of the devastating impact of the nuclear weapons used during World War II on Hiroshima and Nagasaki know too well the depth and strength of destruction,” Mr Sandakabatu said.
The Solomon Islands delegation has called on countries possessing nuclear weapons to respect the various international frameworks on Nuclear Disarmament including the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty, Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty, Chemical Weapons Conventions, Biological and Toxic Weapons Conventions.
Mr Sandakabatu said Solomon Islands regrets to see that some countries that possess Nuclear weapons remain outside of these international disarmament frameworks and this situation weakens multinationalism.
“We agree that Nuclear weapons do not provide security to people but a threat to humanity. Nuclear weapons remain a security threat enhancer. We regret disarmament talks have not materialized in real outcomes,” he pointed out.
Meanwhile, the Solomon Islands delegation continues to attend other multilateral and bilateral meetings at the margins of the UNGA.
Head of Delegation, Deputy Prime Minister Manasseh Maelanga is due to deliver Solomon Islands Statement on Saturday 28.
The UNGA will end on October 1.
Press Release, GCU