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International Day against Nuclear Tests

On 2 December 2009, the 64th session of the United Nations General Assembly declared 29 August the International Day against Nuclear Tests by unanimously adopting resolution 64/35

The Day is meant to galvanize the United Nations, Member States, intergovernmental and non-governmental organizations, academic institutions, youth networks and the media to inform, educate and advocate about the necessity of banning nuclear tests as a valuable step towards achieving a safer world. The Preamble of the resolution emphasizes that "every effort should be made to end nuclear tests in order to avert devastating and harmful effects on the lives and health of people" and that "the end of nuclear tests is one of the key means of achieving the goal of a nuclear-weapon-free world.”

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has stated with great clarity: “A world free of nuclear weapons would be a global public good of the highest order.” In May of 2010, all the States Parties to the Treaty on the Non-proliferation of Nuclear Weapons, committed themselves to work to “achieve the peace and security of a world without nuclear weapons” and they characterized achieving a ban on nuclear testing as “vital.”

The International Day was created as a result of the many recent bilateral and multilateral governmental level developments, of broad movements in civil society, and of the efforts of the UN Secretary-General himself.

Since its establishment, the International Day against Nuclear Tests, together with other events and actions, has helped to create a global environment with more optimistic prospects towards a world free of nuclear weapons. There have been visible signs of progress on various fronts.

2010 marked the inaugural commemoration of the International Day against Nuclear Tests Day. It was observed with various activities throughout the world, such as symposia, conferences, exhibits, competitions, publications, instruction in academic institutions, media broadcasts and others. A number of events were held at United Nations Headquarters, as well. Similar activities are planned for the 2011 observance.

2011, marks the Twentieth Anniversary of the closure of the Semipalatinsk nuclear test site.

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