New Zealand Embassy Manila, The Philippines

New Zealand Prime Minister to attend nuclear security summit

Prime Minister John Key will be the only leader of a country with no nuclear weapons or nuclear power at next week’s nuclear security summit in Washington.

More than 40 heads of state will assemble at the Washington Convention Centre, to focus on securing nuclear materials to prevent them falling into the hands of terrorists.

The fact that New Zealand will be the only non-nuclear state at the summit “reflects New Zealand’s unique positioning in the world and the fact that we can speak passionately and authoritatively on the subject” said Mr Key.

The summit has been given added impetus with the signing of a new US-Russia treaty on nuclear disarmament earlier this week, which has been hailed as the first substantial step towards the countries’ shared commitment to a world without nuclear weapons.

Philippine president Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo will also attend the Washington conference.  The Philippines was the chair of the nuclear non-proliferation treaty review conference held in Manila in May.

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