Key quotes UN nuclear resolution
The UN has backed a resolution aimed at removing all nations' nuclear weapons.
Last Modified: 24 Sep 2009 19:11 GMT

The UN Security Council resolution seeks to improve the monitoring of
nuclear plants and to minimise nuclear proliferation [AFP]

The UN Security Council has backed a US-sponsored resolution aimed at removing nuclear weapons from all nations.

The resolution supports and strengthens the role of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) in monitoring nuclear plants and nuclear fuel and minimising the risk of nuclear proliferation worldwide.

All five permanent Security Council members - the United States, Russia, China, Britain and France - have nuclear weapons. 

World actors spoke about the resolution and non-proliferation.

Ban Ki-Moon, UN secretary general

"This is a historic moment, a moment offering a fresh start toward a new future.

"Nuclear disarmament is the only sane path to a safer world.

 "I urge the Security Council to make the most of this moment.

 "It should not be a one-time event ... We must sustain the momentum."  

Barack Obama, US president

"We harbour no illusions about the difficulty of bringing about a world without nuclear weapons.

"We know there are plenty of cynics, and that there will be setbacks to prove their point.

"But there will also be days like today to push us forward - days that tell a different story." 

Mohammed el-Baradei, IAEA director

Mohammed el-Baradei said that the IAEA's infrastructure is "dilapidated," that it is underfunded, works in isolation and has no authority to carry out intrusive inspections in at least 90 countries.

"The Security Council should work out a comprehensive compliance mechanism that allows the IAEA to deal with specific cases," he said.

Dr Hans Blix, former chief UN weapons inspector

"If the US and China go ahead [and ratify a treaty to end nuclear testing] then the chances are that India, Pakistan, Israel and others would do the same as well.

"It would be a great thing if one could get a complete ban on all nuclear tests in the future.

"One needs to make use of both inducements and disincentives. In the case of Iran, I think there has been a bit too much talk of the disincentives, that's to say the punishment and the sanctions.

"I think that the economic sanctions can have some value ... in showing them that the whole world would like to have their enrichment under some control.

"But we have not heard ... the United States saying that they might extend diplomatic recognition and open diplomatic relations, or that they would be willing, with others, to give a guarantee against attack on Iran providing Iran would be willing to settle on the enrichment issue."

Iranian government statement

"The Islamic Republic of Iran reiterates its readiness to engage in serious and constructive negotiations with interested parties [on Iran's nuclear programme]," the country's mission said in a statement.

"At the same time, we believe that as a prerequisite for success in future negotiations, futile and illegal demands of the past years that have proven to be of no avail should be abandoned."

Dmitry Medvedev, Russian president

"Our main shared goal is to untie the problem knots" among nations seeking nuclear non-proliferation and disarmament.

"This is complicated since the level of mistrust among nations remains too high, but it must be done."

Hu Jintao, Chinese president

"All nuclear-weapon states should make an unequivocal commitment of unconditionally not using or threatening to use nuclear weapons against non-nuclear-weapon states."

Benita Ferrero-Waldner, the European Commissioner for External Affairs with the Quartet

"For the first time the American president has had a meeting on non-proliferation, which shows the great commitment that is there.

"And it is about playing by the rules. Nobody is denied civilian use of nuclear energy, but of course no non-proliferation should go on. And for us, the Europeans, that is a very important issue.

"So we will work side-by-side with the USA on that issue for all the people.

"It is up to the Security Council members to assure that commitments are being met.

"We see with the new Obama administration that there is a possibility to really take things on from day one onwards."

Nicolas Sarkozy, French president

"We may all be threatened one day by a neighbor, by a neighbor endowing itself with nuclear weapons.

"What I believe is that if we have the courage to affirm and impose sanctions on those who violate resolutions of the Security Council we will be lending credibility to our commitment to a world with fewer nuclear weapons and ultimately with no nuclear weapons."

Al Jazeera and agencies
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