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Senior U.S. State Department Official to Address Conference on Disarmament

A senior U.S. negotiator for arms control treaties is scheduled this week to address the first 2012 plenary meeting of the international Conference on Disarmament in Geneva, Switzerland, the State Department announced (see GSN, Jan. 20).

Assistant Secretary of State Rose Gottemoeller intends to focus her remarks to the 65-member nation body on the urgency of beginning official multinational talks on a treaty that would ban the production of new fissile material for nuclear weapons, according to a department press release.

The conference in 2009 approved a work plan that would include beginning negotiations on a fissile material cutoff treaty. Pakistan, however, reversed its initial support of the work plan and has blocked advancement of the program. The conference operates on the basis of consensus.

Gottemoeller is scheduled on Wednesday to depart Geneva for Vienna, Austria, where she plans to hold talks with representatives from other countries on arms control matters in Europe (U.S. State Department release, Jan. 20).

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