UN Secretary-General, Mr Ban Ki-Moon, has urged the international community to focus more on confronting the global challenge of nuclear terrorism.
Ban, who was reacting to the outcome of the 2016 Nuclear Security Summit (NSS) in Washington D.C. on Saturday, also called for bridging of the gap between nuclear disarmament and non-proliferation.
He welcomed the outcome of the summit, especially the Action Plan in support of the United Nations, saying that the plan and other endorsements contained in the communiqué would ensure sustenance of gains of the summit.
He said that the efforts of the UN in confronting the global challenge of nuclear terrorism rested on two pillars – the Security Council resolution 1540 (2004) and the International Convention for the Suppression of Acts of Nuclear Terrorism.
Ban said that countries, industries and the civil society had key roles to play in implementing UN’s mandate and provisions so that all member-states could rise to the challenge.
He stressed that universal adherence to the Convention on suppression of terrorism was crucial, and urged all states to join.
“We need to step up our efforts to build the capacities of States’ parties.
“The UN has a key role to play in responding to any use or threat of use by terrorists of nuclear, chemical, biological and radiological materials.
“This includes by strengthening information sharing on terrorist and foreign terrorist fighters as well as improving border controls and national capacities and strategies,” he said.
He stated that in case any use of nuclear materials resulted in complex emergency that transcended national and international capacities, the UN was prepared to coordinate response in humanitarian and other areas to assist member-states.
He urged the international community to pursue broader measures of prevention in the context of the UN Global Counter Terrorism Strategy in particular, by addressing the conditions conducive to terrorism.
The secretary-general said that the conditions also included preventing violent extremism, “stopping the flow of foreign fighters, blocking terrorist financing, and working to promote human rights and sustainable development”.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that World leaders at the summit welcomed the “entry into force” of the 2005 Amendment to the Convention on Physical Protection of Nuclear Material and Facilities and called for more ratification by States.
They also expressed commitment to reaffirming the central role the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) played in strengthening global nuclear security. (NAN)