Tibor Tóth looks back on eight years at the CTBTO’s helm

The call for the Treaty’s entry into force is much louder. And the international norm against nuclear testing is much stronger and more solid than ever. CTBTO Executive Secretary Tibor Tóth
CTBTO Executive Secretary Tibor Tóth

On 31 July, Executive Secretary Tibor Tóth leaves the CTBTO after eight years as the organization’s Executive Secretary. In his last speech to CTBTO Member States, Tóth stressed the consolidation of the no-test norm and the maturation of the CTBT verification regime as defining features of his tenure, which started in August 2005.

Tóth denounced the nuclear tests declared by North Korea in 2006, 2009 and 2013 as “serious threats to the Treaty and its established norm against nuclear testing,” adding that “the reaction of the international community to each of the tests was immediate and resolute…a very large number of States and non-State actors also took the opportunity to highlight the importance of the Treaty for nuclear non-proliferation and disarmament and the urgency of its entry into force.”

The performance of the verification system was beyond expectations. It displayed its sensitivity and effectiveness by rapidly locating, identifying and determining the very low yield of the test explosion.CTBTO Executive Secretary Tibor Tóth on the nuclear test announced by North Korea in 2006

Tóth described the new tools put in place during his tenure to ensure oversight, transparency and accountability, including online and real-time access to the organization’s key performance indicators. Through these tools, the CTBTO’s Member States can view and assess the organization’s performance “at macro, micro and even nano levels.”

Despite a constant rise in its activities, the Commission has been working with a zero real growth budget since 2002. Managing an ever growing workload with a constant level of resources has been a serious challenge.CTBTO Executive Secretary Tibor Tóth

Read the full address here.

Tibor Tóth’s tenure in figures: August 2005 to July 2013

On 1 August 2013, Lassina Zerbo will succeed Tóth as Executive Secretary. Zerbo, a Burkina Faso national and currently head of the International Data Centre, was elected by the organization’s Member States in October 2012.