The Russian Federation’s recent announcement of plans to station non-strategic nuclear weapons in Belarus represents the first “nuclear sharing” agreement made since the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons entered into force in 1970, the senior United Nations disarmament official told the Security Council today, emphasizing that — against the backdrop of the Ukraine conflict — the risk such arms will be used is higher today than at any time since the end of the cold war.
Izumi Nakamitsu, Under-Secretary-General and High Representative for Disarmament Affairs, reported that on 25 March, Moscow announced its agreement with Minsk to station its non-strategic nuclear weapons in Belarus.
While the issue of the hosting by a non-nuclear-weapon State of a nuclear-weapon State’s nuclear arms is one that has existed for decades, she said all such arrangements predate the Non-Proliferation Treaty — “with the exception of the recent announcement [by the Russian Federation]”.
As Council members took the floor, the representative of the United States described the Russian Federation’s suggestion that its intention to deploy nuclear weapons in Belarus is somehow justified as “ludicrous”.
The meeting began at 10:04 a.m. and ended at 12:13 p.m.