12 July 2006

UN Seminar on Implementing Security Council Resolution Aimed at Preventing Mass Destruction Weapon Proliferation in Beijing 12 - 13 July

NEW YORK, 11 July (Department for Disarmament Affairs) -- A United Nations seminar, entitled "Implementing United Nations Security Council Resolution 1540 in Asia and the Pacific", is scheduled to be held in Beijing, China, from 12 to 13 July 2006.  Organized by the Department for Disarmament Affairs, through its Regional Centre for Peace and Disarmament in Asia and the Pacific, at the initiative of China, the seminar is sponsored by the Governments of Australia, China, Denmark, Norway and the United Kingdom, as well as the European Union.

On 28 April 2004, the Security Council unanimously adopted resolution 1540 (2004) under Chapter VII of the United Nations Charter.  This was the first formal decision by the Security Council, affirming that the proliferation of nuclear, chemical and biological weapons, as well as their means of delivery, constitutes a threat to international peace and security.  The resolution imposes binding obligations on all States to take measures to prevent the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction and, in particular, to keep them from getting into the hands of non-State actors.  In April 2006, the Security Council extended the mandate of the 1540 Committee for two years, (in Security Council resolution 1673), and decided to intensify outreach efforts to promote its full implementation.

The seminar is the first outreach activity of the 1540 Committee in the Asia-Pacific region.  It is addressing, inter alia, the current status of implementation of the Security Council resolution 1540; prohibitions specific to the resolution; and measures related to accounting, securing, and the physical protection of nuclear, chemical and biological items, including related materials and means of delivery.  It is focusing on issues related to export controls and international assistance, as well as lessons learned since the adoption of the resolution.

Approximately 50 participants from governmental and non-governmental sectors, mainly from the Asia-Pacific region, and international organizations will attend.

For further information, contact Tsutomu Ishiguri, Director, Regional Centre for Peace and Disarmament in Asia and the Pacific, tel.:  917 367 4130, fax:  212 963 1121, e-mail:  rasandiharisoa@un.org .

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