Seventy-Seventh Session of the UN General Assembly First Committee in New York

Statement on Disarmament Machinery

Delivered by H.E. Robert in den Bosch, Permanent Representative of the Kingdom of the Netherlands to the Conference on Disarmament and Ambassador at large

Mr. Chair,

In addition to the statement by the European Union, the Netherlands would like to make the following remarks in its national capacity. 

The illegal invasion of Ukraine by Russia has fundamentally altered our discussions at the UN on the disarmament machinery. We condemn the dangerous and irresponsible Russian nuclear rhetoric in the strongest possible terms. In this light, the discussions in the first committee thus remain of the utmost importance. We need to take steps to reduce nuclear and other security risks, to increase transparency and accountability. This requires effective and constructive multilateralism through a functioning Disarmament Machinery that is responsive to the challenges of today’s world.

The Netherlands is a strong advocate of effective multilateralism, because it offers the best guarantee for security, peace and sustainable development. We therefore underline the important work by the office holders of the various treaty bodies based in Geneva. Especially now, with the rules based order under immense pressure, we must continue to invest in the multilateral system and uphold international law, including the UN charter.

We need a pragmatic approach to move the disarmament agenda forward as well as assure adequate financing for the UN disarmament machinery and its various instruments. The Netherlands is deeply concerned by the continued stalemate in the Conference on Disarmament. To overcome the inability to reach an agreement, an in-depth examination of the modus operandi of the CD is urgently needed. 

More in general, to tackle the multifaceted challenges in the field of disarmament, non-proliferation and arms control, we need a diversity of actors working together towards positive outcomes. Bringing together different perspectives, backgrounds, experiences, and knowledge will enable us to find more creative and innovative solutions. A multi-stakeholder approach through engagement with civil society, academia, industry and research institutions is therefore essential. In this respect, we appreciate UNIDIR’s substantive contributions at various disarmament fora. To counter the lack of substantive progress of the Conference on Disarmament in more than two decades, different voices and perspectives are needed.


The Netherlands is a proud supporter of a feminist foreign policy. Part of this policy is ensuring our actions include gender perspectives in all aspects of foreign policy and diplomacy. In this regard we support the important work that has been conducted in this field beginning with the adoption of the historic UNSC Res 1325 on Women, Peace and Security in 2000. This has resulted in a large body of research and knowledge sharing and in the adoption of 103 National Action Plans.

Furthermore,  the increasing number of first committee resolutions that take gender perspectives into account is encouraging. The Netherlands welcomes efforts to address the gendered impact of the use, or threat of use, of WMDs at the Review Conferences of the NPT and the BTWC, as well as conventions in the field of conventional weapons like the APMBC and the CCM.


Let me conclude by stating that effective and constructive multilateralism requires the time and willingness of delegations to build a broad middle ground to make collective progress towards a more safe and secure world. In her opening statement, High Representative Nakamitsu referred to the SG report “Our Common Agenda” calling for a New Agenda for Peace. The Netherlands is fully committed to engage constructively in discussions on the development of a vision for the future to achieve sustainable disarmament, peace and security.

Thank you Chair.