Kazakhstan wants the world's nuclear weapons to be decommissioned by 2045, according to comments published by the country's foreign minister on Sunday.
"The current military conflict in Ukraine, talks about atomic rearmament and mutual threats about the use of nuclear weapons are forcing us more than ever before to think about how fragile humanity is and how important a ban and the destruction of these deadly weapons is," read the comments by Mukhtar Tleuberdi, published Sunday in the newspaper Liter.
The comments are unlikely to be popular in Moscow, which is one of the world's leading nuclear powers. Russian forces helped stabilize the sitting Kazakh government after fuel protests spread across the country early this year.
Despite that aid, Kazakhstan does not always see eye to eye with the Kremlin. Just last week, Kazakhstan's president said the country would not recognize breakaway Ukrainian republics as independent. Russia invaded Ukraine in February shortly after recognizing the independence of two regions where ethnic Russian groups have been fighting the Ukrainian government for years.
Tleuberdi used his article to call on all nuclear states to draw up plans by which all the world's nuclear weapons would be liquidated by 2045. He said that year would be important, since it would mark the 100th anniversary of the United Nations.
Kazakhstan was briefly a nuclear state after the breakup of the Soviet Union, as it hosted some of that country's nuclear forces, just like Belarus and Ukraine. Under deals worked out with Russia, those weapons were eventually handed back to Moscow, in exchange for international security guarantees.
Kazakhstan was also the site of hundreds of atomic weapons tests between 1949 and 1989.