Delegation of the European Union
to the United Nations - New York

EU General Statement – United Nations 1st Committee: Vote on Cluster VI Comprehensive Nuclear-Test Ban Treaty

New York, 01/11/2017 - 00:00, UNIQUE ID: 171204_8
Statements by the Spokesperson

European Union General Statement delivered by Ms. Anne Kemppainen, Minister Counsellor, Head of Political Section for Non-proliferation and Disarmament, Delegation of the European Union in Geneva, at the 72nd Session of the United Nations General Assembly First Committee before the vote on Cluster VI (Regional disarmament and security) concerning the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty (CTBT).

Mr. Chairman,

  1. I have the honour to speak on behalf of the European Union. The Candidate Countries Turkey, the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia*, Montenegro*, Serbia* and Albania*, the country of the Stabilisation and Association Process and potential candidate Bosnia and Herzegovina, and the EFTA countries Liechtenstein and Norway, members of the European Economic Area, as well as Ukraine, the Republic of Moldova and Georgia, align themselves with this statement.
  2. With regard to draft Resolution L.8, Strengthening of security and cooperation in the Mediterranean region, the EU would like to state the following.
  3. We take note of the revised operative paragraph 5 which has been tabled in order to maintain consensus on this important Resolution. It calls upon all States of the Mediterranean region that have not yet done so to adhere to all the multilaterally negotiated legal instruments in force related to the field of disarmament and non-proliferation, thus creating the conditions necessary for strengthening peace and cooperation in the region.
  4. We would like to underline that the proposed reference to “legal instruments in force” does not imply a change to our long-standing position in support of the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty (CTBT) which still has to enter into force. Promoting universalisation and the early entry into force of the CTBT are among the EU’s top priorities. All 28 EU Member States have ratified the Treaty, and remain strongly committed to pursuing the achievement of its objectives. A proposal for EU Ministers is currently under consideration to continue the EU’s substantial financial support for the CTBT.
  5. The EU reiterates its call on all States who have not yet done so, to sign and ratify the CTBT without any preconditions or delay. In particular, we address this call on the remaining eight Annex II States whose ratification is essential for the Treaty’s entry into force. Pending the entry into force, we call upon all States to maintain moratoria on nuclear weapon test explosions and other nuclear explosions and to refrain from any actions that would undermine the Treaty’s object and purpose. In this regard, we strongly condemn the nuclear tests carried out by the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK) which are illegal under multiple UN Security Council Resolutions.
  6. Nuclear weapon test explosions or any other nuclear explosions represent a serious threat to international peace and security, and undermine the global non-proliferation regime. The EU will continue to strongly support the CTBT and its Organization and the strengthening of its monitoring and verification capabilities. It is important that all State Signatories adhere to the objectives of the Treaty. Nonetheless, the absence of the CTBT’s entry into force prevents the use of on-site inspections, an important verification tool. Only the entry into force of the Treaty will outlaw nuclear weapon test explosions or any other nuclear explosions in a verifiable way. We will therefore continue to use every opportunity to advocate the Treaty’s ratification and universalisation also during this First Committee session.

Thank you, Mr. Chairman.

* The former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Montenegro, Serbia and Albania continue to be part of the Stabilisation and Association Process.

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