|Statement by Counsellor Mr. Kang Yong from the Chinese Delegation on the Issue of Nuclear-Weapon-Free Zone at the Third Session of the Preparatory Committee for the 2010 NPT Review Conference|
(New York, 7 May 2009)
At the outset, let me congratulate on behalf of the Chinese Delegation, on the entry into force of the Central Asian Nuclear-Weapon-Free Zone Treaty on March 21. It symbolizes the establishment of the first nuclear-weapon-free zone in the northern hemisphere. We appreciate the unremitting efforts by the five Central Asian countries and other parties concerned to this end. Meanwhile, we also hope countries concerned find a solution to issues related to the treaty and its protocol through friendly consultations at an early date.
The establishment of nuclear-weapon-free zones is an important step toward the goal of a world free of nuclear weapons. It is of great significance to advancing the nuclear disarmament and non-proliferation process and to promoting world and regional peace and security.
Efforts by non-nuclear-weapon states to establish, in light of their actual conditions, nuclear-weapon-free zones on the basis of consulting among themselves and voluntary agreement should be respected and supported. Nuclear-weapon states should respect the legal status of all nuclear-weapon-free zones and undertake relevant obligations in a legally binding form. They should fulfill the security assurances provided for by the protocols of all nuclear-weapon-free zone treaties and undertake not to use or threaten to use nuclear weapons against non-nuclear-weapon states or nuclear-weapon-free zones unconditionally.
The guidelines on establishing nuclear-weapon-free zones adopted by the United Nations Disarmament Commission in 1999 are still of irreplaceable importance to the efforts for establishing nuclear-weapon-free zones. All parties concerned should faithfully observe those guidelines during the process of establishing nuclear-weapon-free zones.
China always supports the efforts by non-nuclear-weapon states to establish nuclear-weapon-free zones in accordance with relevant guidelines and undertakes not to use or threaten to use nuclear weapons against non-nuclear-weapon states or nuclear-weapon-free zones unconditionally.
The Chinese Government has ratified the Antarctic Treaty, the Second Protocol to the Tlatelolco Treaty, the Second and Third Protocols to the Rarotonga Treaty, and the First and Second Protocols to the Pelindaba Treaty. China faithfully fulfills relevant obligations under those treaties.
China has reached agreement with the ASEAN on issues related to the protocol to the Bangkok Treaty and is expecting the ASEAN and other nuclear-weapon states to resolve the outstanding issues as soon as possible and open the protocol for signature.
China supports countries in the Middle East to establish a nuclear-weapon-free zone in that region through consultations according to resolutions adopted by the 1995 NPT Review and Extension Conference and various sessions of the UN General Assembly.
China respects and welcomes Mongolia's nuclear-weapon-free status.
China will as always support the efforts to establish nuclear-weapon-free zones and make its contribution to the goal of achieving a nuclear-weapon-free world.
Thank you, Mr. Chairman.