Washington: Proliferation and potential use of nuclear weapons pose the most dangerous threat to global security and peace, US President Barack Obama said on Thursday as leaders from over 50 countries started arriving here to attend the Nuclear Security Summit with the sole objective of preventing terrorists from obtaining and using atomic weapons.
"Of all the threats to global security and peace, the most dangerous is the proliferation and potential use of nuclear weapons," Obama said in an op-ed in The Washington Post on the eve of the fourth Nuclear Security Summit, which among others is being attended by leaders from countries like India, Japan, China, South Korea and Brazil.
The Indian delegation is being led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
"Thursday in Washington, I`ll welcome more than 50 world leaders to our fourth Nuclear Security Summit to advance a central pillar of our Prague Agenda: preventing terrorists from obtaining and using a nuclear weapon," Obama wrote.
"We'll review our progress, such as successfully ridding more than a dozen countries of highly enriched uranium and plutonium. Nations, including the US will make new commitments and we'll continue strengthening international treaties and institutions that underpin nuclear security," he said.
Given the continued threat posed by organisations such as the terrorist group IS, Obama wrote, world leaders will also join allies and partners in reviewing their counterterrorism efforts, to prevent the world's most dangerous networks from obtaining the world's most dangerous weapons.
Obama said the international community must remain united in the face of North Korea's continued provocations, including its recent nuclear test and missile launches.
The additional sanctions recently imposed on Pyongyang by the UN Security Council show that violations have consequences, he said
The US will continue working with allies and partners for the complete and verifiable denuclearisation of the Korean Peninsula in a peaceful manner, he said.
"More broadly, the security of the world demands that nations - including the United States - ratify the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty and conclude a new treaty to end the production of fissile material for nuclear weapons once and for all," Obama said.
Obama said as the only nation ever to have used nuclear weapons, the US has a moral obligation to continue to lead the way in eliminating them.
"Still, no one nation can realise this vision alone. It must be the work of the world," said the president.