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Foreign Minister Yohei Kono expressed hope Tuesday that a nuclear elimination draft resolution Japan submitted to the U.N. Millennium General Assembly’s committee on disarmament will be adopted in the upcoming vote.

Kono told a news conference he hopes the proposal will be approved with “as much support as possible” in the vote, expected to take place in the next two days.

On Oct. 13, Japan proposed a plan for eliminating the world’s nuclear arsenal in a draft resolution called “A Path to the Total Elimination of Nuclear Weapons.” The plan was submitted in line with a pledge Kono made to the United Nations in September.

Japan worked on the proposal following a commitment made by the world’s nuclear-weapon states at the U.N. nuclear nonproliferation conference in May to eliminate their nuclear arsenals as an “unequivocal undertaking.”

Amplifying a series of nuclear disarmament proposals Japan has made since 1994, the latest Japanese draft calls for implementing the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty by 2003, among other nonproliferation efforts.

It also calls for an immediate start to negotiations for a “cutoff treaty” to ban production of fissile materials for nuclear weapons and other nuclear explosive devices. The treaty’s adoption is eyed for 2005.

The draft resolution urges the development of verification capabilities to provide assurance of compliance with nuclear disarmament agreements to realize a “nuclear weapon-free world.”

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