News / Middle East

US Regrets Egypt Walk-Out at Nuclear Talks

Mohammed Morsi, President of Egypt, addressing 67th session of the United Nations General Assembly, U.N. headquarters in New York, Sept. 26, 2012.Mohammed Morsi, President of Egypt, addressing 67th session of the United Nations General Assembly, U.N. headquarters in New York, Sept. 26, 2012.
x
Mohammed Morsi, President of Egypt, addressing 67th session of the United Nations General Assembly, U.N. headquarters in New York, Sept. 26, 2012.
Mohammed Morsi, President of Egypt, addressing 67th session of the United Nations General Assembly, U.N. headquarters in New York, Sept. 26, 2012.
Reuters
The United States said on Tuesday it regretted Egypt's decision to walk out of U.N. talks on non-proliferation and still hoped all sides would agree to hold a conference on banning nuclear weapons in the Middle East.
 
Egypt withdrew from nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) talks in Geneva on Monday in protest at what it called the failure to implement a 1995 resolution for a Middle East free of nuclear weapons — an implicit criticism of Israel, believed to be the only nuclear-armed country in the region.
 
"We regret the Egyptian decision to leave the NPT Preparatory Committee meeting. It does not affect the U.S. commitment to convening a conference on a Middle East zone free of weapons of mass destruction," Thomas Countryman, U.S. Assistant Secretary for International Security and Non-Proliferation, who heads the U.S. delegation, told Reuters.
 
"We will continue to seek practical means to bring the parties together. We remain prepared to assist in any way requested, but leadership must also come from states of the region," Countryman said in comments sent by email.
 
The conference, which was supposed to be held last December in Helsinki after being agreed at NPT talks in 2010, was postponed a month before without a new date being set.
 
Western countries have voiced hope during the two-week session that the delayed conference could be convened this year.
 
Iran and Syria called last week for a conference on banning nuclear weapons and urged major powers to stop helping Israel acquire nuclear technology.
 
Egypt said it pulled out of the talks "to send a strong message of non-acceptance of the continued lack of seriousness in dealing with the establishment of a nuclear-free zone in the Middle East."
 
Israel has not ratified the 1970 NPT and therefore is not attending the Geneva session which ends on Friday.
 
U.S. and Israeli officials have said a nuclear arms-free zone in the Middle East could not be a reality until there was broad Arab-Israeli peace and Iran curbed its nuclear program, which Tehran denies has a weapons dimension.

You May Like

UN Watchdog Urges Israel to Probe Possible Gaza War Crimes

More than 2,100 Palestinians, most of them civilians, were killed in a 51-day war in Gaza, along with 67 Israeli soldiers and six civilians in Israel More

New Kenyan 'Thin SIMs' Poised to Transform African Mobile Money

Equity's new technology is approved in African nation for one-year trial, though industry leader Safaricom says thin SIMs could lead to data theft and fraud More

Solar's Future Looks Brighter

New technology and dropping prices are contributing to a surge in solar power More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Talks to Resume on Winter Gas for Ukrainei
X
Al Pessin
October 25, 2014 4:21 PM
Ukrainian and Russian officials will meet again next week in an effort to settle their dispute over natural gas supplies that threatens to leave Ukraine short of heating fuel for the coming winter. VOA’s Al Pessin reports from London the dispute is complex, and has both economic and geopolitical dimensions.
Video

Video Talks to Resume on Winter Gas for Ukraine

Ukrainian and Russian officials will meet again next week in an effort to settle their dispute over natural gas supplies that threatens to leave Ukraine short of heating fuel for the coming winter. VOA’s Al Pessin reports from London the dispute is complex, and has both economic and geopolitical dimensions.
Video

Video Smugglers Offer Cheap Passage From Turkey to Syria

Smugglers in Turkey offer a relatively cheap passage across the border into Syria. Ankara has stepped up efforts to stem the flow of foreign fighters who want to join Islamic State militants fighting for control of the Syrian border city of Kobani. But porous borders and border guards who can be bribed make illegal border crossings quite easy. Zlatica Hoke has more.
Video

Video China Political Meeting Seeks to Improve Rule of Law

China’s communist leaders will host a top level political meeting this week, called the Fourth Plenum, and for the first time in the party’s history, rule of law will be a key item on the agenda. Analysts and Chinese media reports say the meetings could see the approval of long-awaited measures aimed at giving courts more independence and include steps to enhance an already aggressive and high-reaching anti-corruption drive. VOA’s Bill Ide has more from Beijing.
Video

Video After Decades of Pressure, Luxembourg Drops Bank Secrecy Rules

European Union finance ministers have reached a breakthrough agreement that will make it more difficult for tax cheats to hide their money. The new legislation, which had been blocked for years by countries with a reputation as tax havens, was approved last week after Luxembourg and Austria agreed to lift their vetoes. But as Mil Arcega reports, it doesn’t mean tax cheats have run out of places to keep their money hidden.
Video

Video Kobani Refugees Welcome, Turkey Criticizes, US Airdrop

Residents of Kobani in northern Syria have welcomed the airdrop of weapons, ammunition and medicine to Kurdish militia who are resisting the seizure of their city by Islamic State militants. The Turkish government, however, has criticized the operation. VOA’s Scott Bobb reports from southeastern Turkey, across the border from Kobani.
Video

Video US ‘Death Cafes’ Put Focus on the Finale

In contemporary America, death usually is a topic to be avoided. But the growing “death café” movement encourages people to discuss their fears and desires about their final moments. VOA’s Jerome Socolovsky reports.
Video

Video Ebola Orphanage Opens in Sierra Leone

Sierra Leone's first Ebola orphanage has opened in the Kailahun district. Hundreds of children orphaned since the beginning of the Ebola outbreak face stigma and rejection with nobody to care for them. Adam Bailes reports for VOA about a new interim care center that's aimed at helping the growing number of children affected by Ebola.

All About America

AppleAndroid