(New York 13 October) Parliamentarians and experts from around the globe gathered at the 2009 PNND Assembly, which took place in New York on October 11th and 12th. The two-day conference on “the role of parliamentarians in advancing nuclear abolition” was divided into several sessions and speakers from a dozen countries tackled the challenges of nuclear disarmament before an audience of one hundred legislators and specialists.
The event notably enabled PNND South Korean Co-President Mikyung Lee and Japan Council Member Tadashi Inuzuka to meet for the first time. Both parliamentarians decided to develop a plan that would bring Japanese and Koreans together in promoting a Northeast Asia Nuclear-Weapon- Free zone.
According to a draft treaty based on a NGO working paper adopted in 2008 by a DPJ’s parliamentary group, Northeast Asia Nuclear-Weapon-Free zone should rely on current six-party talks with a 3 (ROK, DPRK and Japan) plus 3 (China, Russia and the United States) framework, non-dependence to nuclear weapons, negative security assurances and obligations to educate current and future generations on the consequences of atomic bombings.
The last session was followed by a public panel on “advancing the UNSG’s five-point plan on nuclear disarmament”. Chaired by Jonathan Granoff, President of the Global Security Institute, the discussion group saw the participation of Mr. Inuzuka from the National Diet of Japan, Mr. Kucinich from the U.S. Congress, Mr. Lee from the ROK Assembly, and Ms. Zapf from the German Bundestag.
A delegation of senior PNND members then met with United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon and presented him the Parliamentarians’ Statement Supporting a Nuclear Weapons Convention.