NPT Review Draft Document Proposes Nuclear-Free Middle East
May 26, 2010
Reports say a draft final document that has been proposed at the nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty (NPT) review conference at the United Nations calls for a meeting of Middle East nations to establish the region as free of nuclear weapons.
Diplomats say that under the proposal, Iran and Israel would be among the nations that would be expected to meet in 2012 to launch negotiations on making the Middle East a region without nuclear, chemical or biological weapons.
Reports say the draft makes no mention of Iran's violations of the NPT -- apparently due to Tehran's threats to veto the final document if Iran, a signatory nation of the NPT, was named.
Reports say the draft names Israel, Pakistan and India as countries that have not ratified the NPT, and also names North Korea, which pulled out of the treaty several years ago.
The draft document -- which has been put forward by the president of the conference, Libran Cabactulan of the Philippines -- is expected to be debated in the coming days as the monthlong NPT review conference heads toward conclusion on Friday. Under the rules of the conference, the final declaration must be approved by consensus by all nations that have ratified the NPT.
compiled from agency reports
Copyright (c) 2010. RFE/RL, Inc. Reprinted with the permission of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, 1201 Connecticut Ave., N.W. Washington DC 20036.
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