Yearbook of the United Nations, 2009. Part 1, Political and security questions. Chapter 7, Disarmament
The Conference on Disarmament, the principal United Nations negotiating forum on the issue, in 2009 overcame years of deadlock and agreed on an agenda jump-starting its work, as the Russian Federation and the United States, the two largest nuclear weapon powers, committed themselves to disarmament in accordance with their obligations under the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT). However, as the year progressed, the Conference was unable to implement its agenda, revealing rifts among Member States on nuclear issues. The Disarmament Commission, which started a fresh three-year cycle, also agreed on a work programme aimed at achieving consensus on nuclear disarmament and non-proliferation, declaring a fourth disarmament decade and developing confidence-building measures in conventional weapons. However, progress was small, as seen also in a related postponement by the General Assembly of a decision to convene a fourth special session on disarmament. United States President Barack Obama in September chaired the Security Council's first summit on nuclear disarmament, attended by 13 heads of State and Government who called on NPT parties to comply fully with their obligations and on countries outside the Treaty to accede to it. The summit also called for a ban on nuclear testing and fissile material production. However, multilateral negotiations in both areas were sluggish. Though three more countries ratified the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty (CTBT), bringing the parties to 151, nine States held back ratifications, preventing the Treaty's entry into force. Meanwhile, the Democratic People's Republic of Korea—a CTBT non-signatory—conducted a second underground nuclear test in violation of Council resolution 1718(2006). The International Atomic Energy Agency continued its efforts to verify the peaceful nature of Iran's nuclear programme and investigated allegations of a destroyed nuclear reactor in the Syrian Arab Republic. While negotiations on the scope of a treaty banning production of fissile material and verification measures were no longer controversial, national security concerns stalled progress, as delegations faced the question whether a treaty should cover existing stockpiles. The entry into force of the central Asian and African nuclear-weapon-free zones spurred nonproliferation in those regions, while discussions on establishing a similar zone free of nuclear weapons in the Middle East made little headway. The three regional centres for peace and disarmament continued to fulfil their mandates despite budgetary constraints. On conventional weapons, the General Assembly decided to meet in 2012 to begin work on a treaty to reinforce licit trade and stamp down illicit trade in small arms. The year marked the tenth anniversary of the Convention banning anti-personnel mines, and countries agreed on the Cartagena Declaration—a shared commitment for a mine-free world. By the end of the year, the Convention on Cluster Munitions was four ratifications short for entry into force. Three more States either ratified or acceded to the chemical weapons Convention, but in a climate of concern that the final extended deadline of 29 April 2012 for destruction of all categories of chemical weapons in the world might not be met. The Advisory Board on Disarmament Matters discussed cyberwarfare, noting that in the area of dual use it shared similarities with biological and chemical warfare. The Secretary-General issued his first report on promoting development through the reduction and prevention of armed violence. He said that young men were most often the perpetrators and victims of armed violence—which was the consequence of underdevelopment— while women, girls and boys suffered most from acute forms of sexual violence. To enhance public awareness about the effects of nuclear weapon test explosions and the need for their cessation, the General Assembly declared 29 August the International Day against Nuclear Tests.
UN - UN. General Assembly - UN. Security Council - IAEA - UN. Conference on Disarmament - UN. Disarmament Commission - INTERNATIONAL SECURITY - DISARMAMENT - NUCLEAR WEAPONS - CHEMICAL WEAPONS - BIOLOGICAL WEAPONS - NUCLEAR NON-PROLIFERATION - CONVENTIONAL WEAPONS - MINE CLEARANCE - SMALL ARMS - RADIOACTIVE WASTE MANAGEMENT - TREATIES
Yearbook of the United Nations, 2009. v. 63; Vol. 63
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