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Statement by H.E. Ambassador Mr. Wang Qun, Head of the Chinese Delegation at the General Debate of the First Committee of the 65th Session of United Nations General Assembly

Mr. Chairman,

At the outset, allow me to congratulate you, on behalf of the Chinese Delegation, on your election to the Chairmanship of this session of UNGA First Committee. I am confident that, with your rich diplomatic experience and wisdom, the current session will be steered to a success. The Chinese Delegation would like to assure you and other delegations of its full cooperation.

Mr. Chairman,

The first decade of the 21st century has witnessed complex and profound changes in the international security landscape. While the overall international situation is stable, traditional security threats such as regional hotspots and conflicts keep emerging, and non-traditional security issues are increasingly pressing. In confronting the complicated and pluralistic security challenges, it has become the common choice of states to join hands to attain the goal of security for all through mutually beneficial means.

China maintains that, to effectively address the common security challenges and build a safer world for all, we should foster a peaceful and stable international environment, fully respect and accommodate the legitimate and reasonable security concerns of all countries, conduct dialogue and cooperation on an equal footing and build state-to-state relations of mutual understanding and mutual trust, adhere to multilateralism, and consolidate the collective security system with the United Nations at its core.

Mr. Chairman,

We welcome the positive progress that has been made in the international arms control and disarmament field since the beginning of this year. To advance the international disarmament, arms control and non-proliferation process, joint and unremitting efforts are called for on the part of the entire international community.

First, the full implementation of the result as reflected in the final document of the Eighth Review Conference of the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons(NPT). To this end, the international community should stick to the NPT’s three major objectives of nuclear disarmament, nuclear non-proliferation and peaceful uses of nuclear energy, and commit to the goal of complete prohibition and thorough destruction of nuclear weapons.

The success of the NPT Review Conference in May this year is of great significance to further enhancing the authority, effectiveness and universality of the Treaty.

China stands for that nuclear-weapon states should explicitly undertake not to seek permanent possession of nuclear weapons, earnestly reduce the role of nuclear weapons in their national security policy, unequivocally undertake not to be the first to use nuclear weapons, unconditionally not use or threaten to use nuclear weapons against non-nuclear-weapon states and nuclear-weapon-free-zones, and conclude an international legal instrument in this regard at an early date. Meanwhile, the international community should work to promote the early-entry-into-force of the Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty (CTBT).

China welcomes the recent signature of the new bilateral nuclear disarmament treaty between the United States and the Russian Federation and wishes to see their early ratification of the Treaty. In the meantime, we hope that they, as countries with largest nuclear arsenals and special and primary responsibility for nuclear disarmament, will continue to make drastic and substantive reductions in their nuclear arsenals, so as to create the necessary conditions for the ultimate realization of complete and thorough nuclear disarmament. When conditions are ripe, other nuclear-weapon states should also join the multilateral negotiations on nuclear disarmament. For nuclear disarmament, the principle of global strategic stability and undiminished security for all is essential.

Nuclear non-proliferation is an essential condition for the complete prohibition and thorough destruction of nuclear weapons. The international community should work to safeguard the international nuclear non-proliferation regime and strengthen the safeguards function of the International Atomic Energy Agency. It is essential that all states strictly fulfill their non-proliferation obligations and strengthen their export control systems. Practices of utilizationism and double standards should be discarded. Non-proliferation and peaceful use of nuclear energy should be handled in a balanced manner. The legitimate rights of each state to peaceful use of nuclear energy should be fully respected and nuclear non-proliferation obligations should be strictly fulfilled. We wish to see peaceful solution to regional nuclear issues through dialogues and negotiations, and hope that the six-party talks on the nuclear issue on the Korean Peninsula could be resumed and the dialogue between Iran and E3+3 could be restarted at an early date.

Earnestly strengthening the nuclear security is crucial to the peaceful use of nuclear energy and non-proliferation. The Global Nuclear Security Summit in April this has helped raised the awareness of the international community about nuclear security. The consensus reached at the Summit has furnished useful guidance to international community in their efforts to address nuclear security challenges and nuclear terrorism threats. China ratified the International Convention for the Suppression of Acts of Nuclear Terrorism on 28 August this year.

The recommendation of this year’s NPT Review Conference on the 2012 International Conference on the establishment of a Middle East zone free of nuclear weapons and all other weapons of mass destruction is of positive significance. We hope that all parties concerned will participate in the preparatory process in a constructive manner so as to ensure that the conference achieve substantive outcome.

Second, the revitalization of the work of the Conference on Disarmament (CD) so as to take forward multilateral disarmament negotiations.

China welcomes the efforts of Secretary-General Pan Ki-moon for convening the high-level meeting 24 September. We are of the view that CD’s position and role are irreplaceable. To revitalize the work of the CD, we maintain that three principles are essential, i.e., to preserve and strengthen CD’s authority and position; respect and upheld CD’s Rules of Procedure, particularly its consensus rule; and to treat the legitimate security concerns of each member state as equal and address them in an earnest manner.

China, for its part, has all along active and supportive of CD’s work, and we firmly believe that, for a "Fissile Materials Cut-off Treaty "(FMCT) with the participation of all states concerned, CD is the only viable forum. The early commencement of the FMCT negotiation, on the basis of CD’s comprehensive and balanced Programme of Work, serves the common interest of all parties. In the meantime, it is also imperative that CD reactivate its substantive work on such core issues as the prevention of an arms race in outer space, nuclear disarmament and security assurances for non-nuclear-weapon states.

Third, the active pursuit of a preventive diplomacy in safeguarding a global common space to the benefits of all mankind.

Outer space is the common wealth of mankind, and the peaceful use and exploration of outer space is in the interest of the whole human-being. The early conclusion, through negotiation, of a new legal instrument on prevention of weaponization in outer space will help address the lacune in the existing legal system on this front, and is of great significance to preventing the weaponization of and an arms race in outer space, and safeguarding the outer space security. While it’s true that certain appropriate and feasible TCB measures in outer space may help safeguard outer space security, they nevertheless cannot substitute the role of the afore-mentioned legal instrument. They may only supplement such a role.

The 21st century is the era of information, and the wide application of information and communication technologies helps picking up the pace of the development of human civilization. Cyber space naturally constitutes a new dimension of multilateral arms control diplomacy. States should exercise effective administration over cyberspace and maintain its security, and avoid it from becoming a new battlefield and a tool of interfering in other countries’ internal affairs. In this context, we welcome the first report ever reached by the UN Group of Governmental Experts on the issue of information security. We hope that the international community will, on this basis, make fresh efforts to explore effective ways of combating cyber threats and preserving the sound international cyber order.

Fourth, a step-by-step approach in taking forward the arms control negotiations in the field of conventional weapons.

China shares the view that the international community should take proper measures to regulate relevant arms trade and combat illicit arms trafficking. The negotiation of "Arms Trade Treaty" (ATT) should proceed step by step and in an open, transparent and consensual manner. Such a treaty should cater for the legitimate concerns and requirements of states on political, security and economic fronts. In addition, it should also be based on the universal, objective and non-discriminate principles in avoidance of being used, for political purposes, to interfere in others countries' internal affairs and disrupt their normal arms trade.

The parties concerned should continue to seek to conclude, within the framework of the CCW, a protocol on cluster munitions balancing humanitarian concerns with legitimate security needs. The Chinese side appreciates the enormous efforts of the Chairman of the GGE put into this protocol. The latest version of Chairman's report reflects the new developments as well as the maximum consensus reached over the past two years’ negotiation. It is our hope that the GGE will, on the basis of the above text, move forward next year, and achieve positive outcome at an early date.

I would also wish to take this opportunity to share with you that, on 29 April this year, China ratified the Protocol on Explosive Remnants of War annexed to CCW.

Mr. Chairman,

We congratulate Mr. Üzümcü on his assumption of the new Director General of Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons(OPCW). We will continue to lend our full support to Director General. In the meantime, we call upon all State Parties to Chemical Weapons Convention (CWC) to fulfill their obligations in a comprehensive and faithful manner. The Chinese side attaches great importance to next year’s Seventh Review Conference of the Biological Weapons Convention (BWC), and commits itself to further enhancing the authority, effectiveness and universality of the Convention. China will co-host an international workshop on Review Conference with Canada and ISU in Beijing this November. We hope that the workshop will help contribute to a success of the Review Conference.

Mr. Chairman,

A more prosperous and harmonious world cannot be achieved in the absence of a peaceful and stable international environment. China, for its part, stands ready to work together with other countries to further advance the international arms control and non-proliferation process, so as to create a bright future of lasting peace and common prosperity.

Thank you, Mr. Chairman.

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