Deputy FM Attends Geneva Disarmament Conference

ASTANA – On Feb. 26, Deputy Foreign Minister Alexey Volkov participated in the Conference on Disarmament in Geneva, Switzerland.

As a leading nation in the global process of nuclear non-proliferation and disarmament Kazakhstan gives great importance to the conference, which it has attended since 1999.

Volkov told the conference that Kazakhstan welcomed the growth in its membership and urged it to consider the peaceful use of outer space.

He said Kazakhstan urged all nations to sign a comprehensive, legally binding commitment to eliminate the nuclear threat and noted President Nursultan Nazarbayev’s initiative for the development and adoption of the UN Universal Declaration of a Nuclear Weapons Free World. He welcomed the decision of U.S. President Barack Obama to seek ratification of the Comprehensive Nuclear Test-Ban Treaty by the U.S. Senate and expressed concerns about the latest nuclear test carried out by North Korea in violation of the resolutions of the UN Security Council.

Volkov said he hoped the Six Party talks in Almaty on nuclear issues would develop common approaches and resolve the Iranian nuclear issue by purely diplomatic means.

Volkov told the UN Human Rights Council gathering in Geneva that Kazakhstan supported strengthening the international system to protect human rights. He said the human rights records of governments around the world needed to be measured on worldwide, regional and domestic scales. He also praised the work of the UNHRC in strengthening the confidence of its member states in its operations and developing constructive dialogues with them.

On Feb. 25, Volkov held direct talks on bilateral issues with Russian officials attending the Geneva conferences. He also met with Deputy UN Secretary-General and Director-General of the UN Office at Geneva Kassym-Zhomart Tokaev, UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Navanethem Pillay and the heads of foreign delegations participating in the UNHRC talks.

During the 67th session of the UN General Assembly on Nov. 12, 2012, Kazakhstan was elected to the UN Human Rights Council for the first time in its history, with 183 out of 193 UN member states voting for it. Kazakhstan has sat on the UNHRC since Jan. 1, 2013 and will do so until 2015.. Kazakhstan actively supports the work of the Human Rights Council and the promotion of human rights.