Executive Secretary meets with President Putin
CTBTO Executive Secretary, Lassina Zerbo, met with President Vladimir Putin of the Russian Federation, on 18 October 2018, in Sochi, Russia. President Putin participated in a lively 2.5 hour debate session at the Valdai Discussion Club prior to hosting a closed group meeting with select dignitaries, including Lassina Zerbo. During the conversation of the Executive Secretary with President Putin, the importance of the CTBT for nuclear disarmament and non-proliferation was highlighted. Topics related to Africa, the UN and the current international agenda were also discussed. Zerbo thanked the President for the support given by the Russian Federation to the CTBTO’s activities and stressed that Russia can continue to play an important role as a global leader in nuclear issues. The Executive Secretary presented President Putin with the commemorative CTBT coin in recognition of his special message at the 20th anniversary of the CTBT in April 2016.
The Executive Secretary was in Sochi this week on the occasion of the 15th annual meeting of the Valdai Discussion Club on the topic: ‘’Russia: Agenda for the 21st Century’’. On 15 October, in a panel discussion on the presentation of the Valdai Discussion Club annual report "Living in a Crumbling World", Zerbo emphasized the prominence of diplomacy and multilateralism to solve security issues that can be considered as the biggest challenge our current world faces.
It is the lack of fully adhering to the international agreements that has made this world look as crumbling.
Meeting with Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov
While in Russia, Zerbo also met with the Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation, Sergey Lavrov, who expressed his appreciation to the work of the CTBTO under his leadership. "We highly appreciate your personal commitment and the efforts, which are being undertaken with the aim to support the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty and to move toward its ratification and entry into force" said Lavrov, who also reiterated the Russian Federation’s commitment to continue providing support to the CTBTO as a key priority for his country.
International organizations are zombies! But the advantage of zombies is that they will never die. The CTBTO will definitely remain [in the new world order], because it is part of the nuclear security architecture.