Kuwait renews its support for UN Secretary-General’s reform plans

NEW YORK: Kuwait reiterated the right of all countries who signed the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) to develop, research, obtain, and use of nuclear technology for peaceful purposes. This came in a speech delivered by First Secretary at Kuwait’s Permanent Mission to the United Nations Mona Behbehani at the Third Preparatory Committee of NPT Review Conference, due in 2020. The review is on the peaceful uses of nuclear energy and improving the effectiveness of the Treaty.

Behbehani added Kuwait maintains that such right must be fully consistent with the legal obligations of countries and agreements concluded with the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA). In this regard, she praised IAEA’s role, noting on the importance of the Agency’s technical cooperation programs, which contribute to building national capacities of developing countries and guarantee the transfer of nuclear technology with peaceful uses to achieve their development goals.

Kuwait has long paid special attention to technical cooperation activities and has contributed to the Agency’s activities, the renewal of its laboratories and its peaceful uses initiative, Behbehani said, stressing on the importance of providing resources for the continuity of technical cooperation programs. Behbehani noted that Kuwait has contributed $10 million to the efforts made by the newly opened low-enriched uranium bank in Kazakhstan out of its belief in the inherent right of states to peaceful use of atomic energy and access to the resources that enable it.

Behbehani also stressed that no agreements should be used to restrict the right of States to the peaceful use of atomic energy. However, Behbehani underlined the importance of subjecting all nuclear facilities in the Middle East to the Agency’s comprehensive safeguards system. The diplomat also stressed the need for Israel to accede to the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons as a non-nuclear-weapon State and to place all its nuclear facilities and installations under the Agency’s comprehensive safeguards system in order to strengthen international efforts to make the Middle East a nuclear-weapon-free zone.

‘Action for Peace’
Separately, Kuwait renewed its support for the Secretary-General’s reform of the Peace and Security pillar, including the ‘Action for Peace’ initiative and its support for the Declaration of Joint Commitments adopted by the Council members with a strong expression of will to develop and build the capacity of peacekeepers. This came in a speech delivered by Kuwaiti deputy Charge d’affaires to the United Nations, Counselor Bader Al-Munikh, at the Security Council session on capacity building to improve the safety and performance of UN peacekeepers.

Munikh hailed Indonesia’s convening, among several countries, of the first tripartite partnership meeting, which is an important and necessary step towards enhancing consultation and coordination, stressing the priority of political solutions to peace operations, which requires qualified operations capable of supporting political tracks. “The majority of peacekeepers operate in a difficult environment and sometimes contribute to averting war crimes according to the mandate of each mission and are at the forefront of civilian protection in some areas of conflict as well as facilitating and protecting humanitarian convoys,” he said.

He called for the involvement of troop-contributing countries as much as possible in the formulation of mandates that the forces of those countries will implement and defend to ensure greater coordination and consolidation of efforts. “Therefore, we are required to formulate mandates that take into account the needs of host countries and their populations, the political processes to be supported, and the training, linguistic and logistical capabilities required of peacekeepers,” he said.

Two memberships
In other news, Kuwait won two subcommittees membership on Tuesday, both under the UN Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC). The state of Kuwait was elected after a vote during a coordination and management meeting of the council, one for the statistical committee and the other seat on the executive board committee. Kuwait was elected to the Statistical committee for the period 2020-23, where it competed in the elections of the commission with the Republic of Korea and the Islamic Republic of Iran, both representing the Group of Asian and Pacific States.

The result of the vote resulted in Kuwait winning 41 votes and Korea 41 votes while Iran got 22 votes. The Statistical committee is the highest body in the world statistical system. Its members include senior statisticians from Member States from all over the world. The State of Kuwait was also won a seat at the Executive Board Committee of the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) as well as the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) and the United Nations Office for Project Services (UNOPS) for the period 2020-22. – KUNA