24 December 2003



NEW YORK, 23 December (UN Headquarters) -- Following is the press statement on Libya delivered by Security Council President Stefan Tafrov (Bulgaria):

Security Council members took note of the letter from the Libyan Permanent Representative transmitting the text of the announcement by the Government of the Libyan Arab Jamahiriya on 19 December that it will abandon voluntarily its programmes for developing weapons of mass destruction (WMD) and their means of delivery and will fulfil and enhance its commitments under the relevant non-proliferation regimes. Council members also heard a briefing from the United Kingdom and United States Ambassadors on the subject.

Council members recalled the Summit level Presidential Statement of 31 January 1992 on “the responsibility of the Security Council in the maintenance of international peace and security”.

Council members warmly welcomed the announcement by the Libyan Government and Libya’s recognition of the strength of the concerns of the international community over WMD proliferation and its voluntary decision to address these concerns. Council members looked forward to the early implementation of all the commitments made in the announcement including the subjection to urgent international verification.

In this context, Council members welcomed and encouraged Libya’s cooperation with others, including the United Nations and other relevant international bodies, to ensure the verified elimination of all Libya’s WMD programmes.

Council members echoed the Secretary General’s statement of 20 December on Libya’s action, underlining the importance of the full and complete implementation of all disarmament treaties by all States concerned and encouraging them to intensify their efforts towards the non-proliferation of weapons of mass destruction.

Council members recognized the value of the diplomatic efforts that have led to Libya’s announcement.

Council members remain committed to contributing to and assisting with these efforts.

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