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ASTANA, March 2. /TASS/. The leading nuclear-weapon states should be the first to set an example in nuclear arms reduction, Kazakh President Nursultan Nazarbayev said on Wednesday during a meeting with the heads of foreign diplomatic missions accredited in the republic.
"Speaking about the reduction of nuclear weapons tests, not the possession of nuclear weapons, which is correct at a time when the world is gripped by terrorism, the nuclear-weapon countries, the ‘nuclear five’ should, in the first instance, set an example in this matter. Otherwise, it may turn out that we will possess [nuclear weapons] and upgrade them, while prohibiting others [to do the same]. That would be wrong," he said.
Nazarbayev noted that otherwise "the 20 nuclear threshold states would want to have nuclear weapons to defend their countries" calling this "a very dangerous trend." "I think all nations of the world should be united to work together in this direction," he said.
Nazarbayev recalled that Kazakhstan "consistently contributed to strengthening the non-proliferation regime." According to him, the country supported the international negotiation process on Iran’s nuclear program making a practical contribution to it, including to the implementation of the Joint Plan of Action. "In December Kazakhstan transported 60 tons of natural uranium to Iran in compensation for the removal of low-enriched uranium from this country. We are convinced that this will ensure the strengthening of the non-proliferation regime, the enforcement of the legitimate rights of states to develop peaceful nuclear energy and non-discriminatory access to nuclear fuel," the Kazakh president said.
"In 2016, the world will mark the 25th anniversary of the closure of the Semipalatinsk nuclear test site, the 10th anniversary of the free trade agreement in Central Asia and the 20th anniversary of the Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty. These historical dates are an important occasion for pooling the efforts of all countries to promote a nuclear-free world," Nazarbayev said.