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NUR-SULTAN, August 29, 2019 - The capital of Kazakhstan hosted the “Nazarbayev Prize for a World Without Nuclear Weapons and International Security” ceremony. The Prize laureates were Lassina Zerbo, Executive Secretary of the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty Organization (CTBTO) Preparatory Commission, and former Director General of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), Yukiya Amano.
Yukiya Amano passed away on July 18, 2019. To receive the Prize, members of his family arrived in Kazakhstan - widow Yukika Amano and brother, former Permanent Representative of Japan in Geneva, Marie Amano.
The First President of the Republic of Kazakhstan – Leader of the Nation Nursultan Nazarbayev noted the special contribution of the late Director General Y.Amano to the achievement of the IAEA’s main goals and the high level of cooperation of the Agency with Kazakhstan, and also emphasized the efforts of the Executive Secretary L.Zerbo to strengthen the verification regime and establish the CTBT International Monitoring Network.
The ceremony was attended by prominent figures, such as the former Minister of Foreign Affairs of Italy, member of the Prize Award Committee Franco Frattini, the IAEA Deputy Director General Mary Alice Heyward, former Director General of the OPCW Ahmet Uzumcu, Deputy Chairman of the Nuclear Threat Initiative Foundation, former UK Secretary of Defense Desmond Brown, former United Nations Under-Secretary-General for Economic and Social Affairs Sha Zukang, and co-chairman of the International Peace Bureau Reiner Brown.
The participants of the event noted the importance and relevance of the Prize, the key role of the First President of Kazakhstan – Leader of the Nation in Kazakhstan’s achievements in the field of disarmament and non-proliferation, his activities as a world-class political figure who is pleased not only for the interests of his country, but also the entire world community, as well as an invaluable contribution to strengthening the regional and international security.
The “Nazarbayev Prize for a world without nuclear weapons and global security” was established in 2016. The first laureate of the Prize was King Abdullah II of Jordan for his contribution to promoting the creation of nuclear and other weapons of mass destruction free zone in the Middle East and the acceptance of 1.5 million Syrian refugees.
The "Nazarbayev Prize for a world without nuclear weapons and global security" ceremony is carried out in logical conjunction with the historic decision of the First President of Kazakhstan – Leader of the Nation to close the Semipalatinsk nuclear test site.
The closure day of the nuclear test site (August 29) is of particular importance for the entire international community - on the initiative of Kazakhstan, this day was declared by the UN General Assembly as the International Day against Nuclear Tests.