May 24, 2007
As the Polish writer Stanislaw Lem once said, “If I knew when nuclear war was going to break out, I would already be sitting in the U.S. President’s armored safe.”
However, many experts doubt that anyone will have the slightest chance to hole up in a shelter in the event of a global collision.
This concern underlies the two-day International Conference on Preventing Nuclear Catastrophe, which opens today in Luxembourg. The Conference has gathered more than 50 of the most authoritative nuclear experts from 18 countries.
The list of participants includes such distinguished figures as IAEA Director General Mohamed ElBaradei, former U.S. Secretary of Defense and Stanford University professor William J. Perry, OSCE High Commissioner Rolf Ekeus, Vice President of the Russian Academy of Sciences Nikolay Laverov, and many others.
One should note that the Conference coincides with the expiration of the UN Security Council’s two-month ultimatum to Iran, which gives its participants an opportunity to elaborate relevant proposals to resolve the Iranian nuclear crisis. The documents adopted by the Conference will be circulated to the presidents of the world’s leading nations and top-tier international organizations, including UN Security Council, IAEA, NATO and CSTO.
The day before the Conference, the chairman of its Organizing Committee Viatcheslav Kantor informed Rossiyskaya Gazeta that “we must sound the alarm and take immediate actions so that our children do not have to mourn the consequences of new devastating tragedies. The risk of regional use of nuclear weapons is escalating every year and the primary concern here is threshold rogue states and terrorist organizations. However, even regional use of nuclear weapon will entail a genocide of innocent civilians and a global environmental and humanitarian disaster.”