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On the occasion of the International Day on the Total Elimination of Nuclear Weapons, 26 September, the Permanent Mission of Cuba to the United Nations Office at Geneva and other International Organizations in Switzerland reaffirms that the mere existence of nuclear weapons is a threat to humanity. The use of a fraction of the more than 6000 existing nuclear weapons, of which about 4,000 are in operational status, would have catastrophic consequences for our planet.

The use of nuclear weapons is illegal, immoral and cannot be justified under any circumstances or security doctrine. The concept of “nuclear deterrence” should be definitely abandoned as a basis of unsustainable and unacceptable military doctrines which far from contributing to nuclear disarmament promote the perpetual possession of these weapons.

It is unacceptable that in today’s world more is spent on means to make war than in promoting development. The huge resources currently devoted to the maintenance and modernization of nuclear arsenals, should be used for the benefit of humanity, promote the development of countries and ultimately eradicate poverty.

We reaffirm the urgent need to accomplish the total elimination of nuclear weapons in a transparent, irreversible and verifiable way with a multilaterally agreed timetable. Cuba advocates a comprehensive Convention on the prohibition of nuclear weapons, which should include the banning of the possession, development, production, acquisition, testing, stockpiling, transfer, use or threat of use of nuclear weapons, and that provides for their destruction under a strict international control.

Therefore, we appeal to the Conference on Disarmament to immediately start negotiations for a Convention on Nuclear Disarmament, which could be formally adopted by the General Assembly at the International High-Level Conference of the United Nations on Nuclear Disarmament convened no later than 2018, under UNGA resolution 68/32.

We recall in this important International Day on the Total Elimination of Nuclear Weapons, the Proclamation of Latin America and the Caribbean as a Zone of Peace, which was a historic landmark and was adopted on 29 January 2014, on the occasion of the Second Summit of the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States, held in Havana. The Proclamation includes the firm commitment of the States of the region to the promotion of nuclear disarmament as a priority.  

Permanent Mission of Cuba in Geneva

September 26, 2015