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Libya's cooperation with UN on weapons applauded

Security Council hails Libya's cooperation with UN on weapons verification

Lauding Libya's renunciation of weapons of mass destruction, Security Council members today encouraged Tripoli to cooperate with the United Nations in verifying that the decision is carried out.

In a statement to reporters, Ambassador Stefan Tafrov of Bulgaria, which holds the Council's rotating presidency, said its members "warmly welcomed" Libya's announcement and its pledge to address international concerns regarding proliferation of the world's most dangerous and deadly arms.

"Council members looked forward to the early implementation of all the commitments made in the announcement, including the subjection to urgent international verification," he said. Libya was encouraged to cooperate with others, including the UN, to ensure the verified elimination of its weapons of mass destruction.

In a communiqué to the Council made public today at UN Headquarters in New York, Libya vowed to voluntarily abandon all internationally proscribed arms and their delivery systems while fulfilling its disarmament treaty obligations.

Libya said its decision stemmed from the belief that "the arms race is conducive neither to its own security nor to that of the region and runs counter to its strong desire for a world blessed with security and peace" and voiced hope that its actions would serve as a model for others "starting with those in the Middle East."

Earlier, the Council was briefed on the subject by the ambassadors of the United Kingdom and the United States. Ambassador Tafrov said today that the members "recognized the value of the diplomatic efforts that have led to Libya's announcement" and "remain committed to contributing to and assisting with these efforts."

Echoing a view expressed earlier this week by Secretary-General Kofi Annan, the President stressed that all countries must fully implement disarmament treaties and intensify their efforts to stop the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction.

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