Mr. Kim Won-soo, Under Secretary General of the United Nations and High Representative for Disarmament Affairs
I welcome you all again. It is my distinct pleasure to attend this seminar that revives the “Kathmandu Process”.
With the decision of UN Member States in 1987 to establish Regional Centre for Peace and Disarmament in Asia and the Pacific, a process of regional and sub-regional dialogue began.
It was the process of dialogue to enhance openness, transparency and confidence building. It was the process for promoting peace and disarmament in the Asia- Pacific region.
This series of deliberations and dialogue at the regional level in Asia and the Pacific have come to be known as the Kathmandu Process.
For various reasons, the Kathmandu Process was stalled for some time.
And, by holding this seminar on UNSC resolution 1540(2004), we are taking an important step in reviving the Process.
This seminar organized by the Regional Center in partnership with the Government of Nepal and the 1540 Committee is a significant step to inject momentum to the Kathmandu Process.
Ladies and Gentlemen,
When it comes to issues of proliferation, the unprecedented development of science and technology coupled with revolution in information technology can potentially bring an existential dilemma.
What if any of the non-state actors gets access to information in developing, acquiring, manufacturing weapons of mass destruction?
What if some rouge elements, guided by some extremist irrational pursuits, succeed on possessing the weapons of mass destruction?
What if some terror groups end up using the weapons of the mass destruction?
These are the questions, which we must ponder upon and must honestly answer to save the future of humanity.
We must comprehend the challenges posed by international terrorism and the gloomy prospect of WMDs reaching at the hand of terrorists.
Responsibility lies on our collective efforts, to prevent the world from scourge of such an un-desired consequences.
The UN Security Council decided, in the resolution 1540 (2004), that all the states shall refrain from providing any form of support to non-state actors that attempt to develop, acquire, manufacture, possess, transport, transfer or use nuclear, chemical or biological weapons, and their means of delivery, in particular for terrorist purposes.
We must remain steadfast to the word and spirit of the resolution and ensure its effective implementation.
Various countries in Asia and the Pacific bear the brunt of terrorism. The network of terror groups has brought a bleak plight to a number of individuals, families and societies in various nations of this region.
We must identify the vulnerabilities and devise proper tool for addressing them; for thwarting the every possibility of union between proliferation and terrorism.
We need to accelerate our efforts for non-proliferation and disarmament.
Regional dialogue can be important to implement the resolution, to foster understanding, cooperation, and to build confidence in the field of peace and disarmament in the region and beyond.
The Kathmandu Process can be a valuable tool for promoting such efforts.
Ladies and Gentlemen,
Nepal neither holds any weapon of mass destruction nor aspires to get one. As a party to the NPT and CWC and signatory to CTBT, Nepal is genuinely concerned about the threat to humanity posed by the continued existence of nuclear and other weapons of mass destruction.
Nepal always supports to a time bound, general and complete disarmament of all weapons of mass destruction. Nepal strongly believes in total elimination of nuclear weapons to attain nuclear disarmament and non-proliferation once and for all.
Our recent ratification of the Biological Weapons Conventions (BWC) testifies our unflinching support for the disarmament agenda.
With the adoption of 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development last year, we all are embarking upon the path to create inclusive and just society free from fear and violence.
Similarly, after agreeing on Paris Agreement on Climate Change, we have committed for collective action to reduce the impact of climate change.
We need a vast amount of resources to realize these goals –goals for peaceful, prosperous and secure world.
And the expenditures on proliferation and arms, drain that very pool of resources. We are of the view that resources wasted for the armaments should be diverted towards achieving the internationally agreed goals of development and for attaining education and prosperity to all.
I am confident that this seminar would be helpful to discuss the 2016 comprehensive review on the status of implementation of the resolution 1540, the role of regional cooperation, and synergies between the resolution and other disarmament and non-proliferation instruments.
I wish for successful and constructive deliberations.
I thank you all.
Statement by Dr. Prakash Sharan Mahat, Minister for Foreign Affairs of Nepal at the Kathmandu Process Seminar on UNSC Resolution 1540 on November 21, 2016 in Kathmandu.