Tracking Number:  393188

Title:  "US Congratulates Kazakhstan for Removal of Nuclear Weapons." The US warmly congratulated Kazakhstan for removing all nuclear weapons from its soil. (950526)

Date:  19950526



The United States warmly congratulates Kazakhstan on becoming a state free of nuclear weapons. On April 21, the last nuclear weapon was removed from Kazakhstani territory. Kazakhstan has fulfilled its pledge to become a nonnuclear weapon state under the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) . It ratified the NPT during Vice President Gore's trip to Almaty in December, 1993. This is a very significant accomplishment for Kazakhstan, for the United States, and for the cause of non-proliferation, which is one of this Administration's primary foreign policy concerns.

At the recent NPT Review Conference in New York City, Kazakhstan strongly supported the indefinite extension of the NPT, which was approved by consensus. In July 1992 Kazakhstan was the first state to ratify the Start I Treaty, which recently entered into force. The United States and the other nuclear weapon states under the NPT have given security assurances to Kazakhstan.

Last November, in an effort to lessen the risks of proliferation, the United States and Kazakhstan cooperated in the removal to the United States of approximately 600 kilograms of highly enriched uranium, enough for over twenty nuclear weapons.

The United States looks forward to continued, close security cooperation with Kazakhstan. In 1993 Secretary of State Christopher visited Almaty, in 1994 and 1995 Secretary of Defense Perry visited Almaty, and in 1992 and 1994 President Nazarbayev visited Washington. In all of these visits, security ties were addressed in detail.

The United States is facilitating the Republic of Kazkahstan's participation in NATO's Partnership for Peace. It is also assisting Kazakhstan through the Nunn-Lugar program for nuclear dismantlement and non-proliferation and through military training and contacts. To cite one example, the United States is cooperating with Kazakhstan in its establishment of a coast guard in the Caspian Sea. To this end, the United States will provide Kazakhstan with patrol vessels and associated training. This cooperation reflects our countries' growing and shared interests in strengthening regional and international security.