Tillerson: Nazarbayev's decision to relinquish nuclear weapons was courageous

Tillerson: Nazarbayev's decision to relinquish nuclear weapons  was courageous

US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson in his remarks at the United Nations Security Council Session on Nuclear Non-Proliferation in New York praised the efforts of Kazakhstan in relinquishing nuclear weapons.

Tillerson said the Republic of Kazakhstan is a particularly illustrative example of the wisdom of relinquishing nuclear weapons.

"This courageous decision by the leaders of Kazakhstan greatly reduced the prospect of nuclear weapons, components of nuclear weapons, or nuclear materials and dual-use technologies from falling into the wrong hands. Nuclear weapons introduced complexity into relations with other countries, and they introduced the risk of miscalculation, accident, or escalation," he said.

"Today Kazakhstan has overwhelmingly been at peace with its neighbors, and its trade relations are robust. This is a modern nation making a substantial contribution to regional and international peace and prosperity. Kazakhstan has only benefitted from its early decision," Tillerson stressed.

"In my previous career, I met President Nazarbayev on many occasions and had the opportunity to ask him about this decision," Tillerson said. "He is more at peace with his choice than ever. He once remarked to me, “It was the best thing I ever did for our young country,” Secretary of State recalls.

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