Arab League decries delay in regional nuclear disarmament

Foreign ministers at the Arab League voiced concerns about a delay in implementing an international action plan that aims to create a nuclear-free Middle East.

A statement issued during a Sunday meeting of the ministers pointed out that an entire year has passed since last year's conference to review an international treaty on the non-proliferation of nuclear weapons.

None of the measures adopted during the conference have been implemented, the ministers said, calling for the formulation of a unified stance on nuclear disarmament in the region.

They said that the delay by concerned international parties in honoring the obligations stipulated by the review conference represents a setback to international efforts toward a nuclear-free world

The delay will lead to the collapse of the treaty in the Middle East and render it ineffective in terms of providing safety for Arab League states from nuclear threats, which would prompt the states to reconsider their policies, the ministers said.

The ministers urged the Arab Group at the UN to communicate with the relevant international bodies to stress the importance of commitment to the terms agreed upon at last year's review conference.

Israel is presumed to have a sizable nuclear arsenal but neither confirms nor denies it. It is the only Middle East state that has not signed the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty and, like fellow non-members India and Pakistan, did not take part in the review conference.

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