Senior Minister Ouch Borith has emphasised the need for nations to intensify efforts towards a common goal of a nuclear-free world.
Speaking at a plenary session to celebrate the International Day for the Total Elimination of Nuclear Weapons on September 26 in the US’ New York City, Borith urged all countries, including Nuclear Weapon States (NWS), to engage in meaningful dialogue and show genuine commitment to disarmament and the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT).
“We must redouble our efforts towards our shared objective: a world free of nuclear weapons,” Borith stated, highlighting the Kingdom’s commitment to the cause.
As a member of ASEAN, Cambodia firmly commits to the Southeast Asia Nuclear Weapon-Free Zone Treaty (SEANWFZ) and its Plan of Action. Borith underscored the importance of a comprehensive approach to disarmament and encouraged NWS to support ASEAN by signing the SEANWFZ Protocol.
Thong Mengdavid, a research fellow at the Asian Vision Institute’s (AVI) Mekong Centre for Strategic Studies, commended the country’s stance against proliferation, citing potential catastrophic global consequences.
“Superpowers or countries with atomic weapons should stop using them as a political force,” Mengdavid said, calling for the UN and the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) to collaborate with major powers to reduce production, stop uranium enrichment for weapons and strengthen international cooperation to prevent global security threats.
Yang Peou, secretary-general of the Royal Academy of Cambodia, voiced his support for the nation’s call for abolition, while raising concerns about the development and increase of nuclear weapons in some countries, notably those not part of the NPT like North Korea and Iran.
“These types of weapons have not been reduced, only increased,” Peou noted, adding that preventing technology transfer to non-treaty countries is crucial in averting a nuclear crisis.