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Disarmament Diplomacy

Issue No. 26, May 1998

P-5 Statement, 4 June

Joint Communiqué on India and Pakistan nuclear tests by the five Permanent Members of the UN Security Council, Geneva, 4 June 1998

Full text

"1. Bearing in mind the responsibility of their countries for the maintenance of international peace and security, the Foreign Ministers of China, France, Russia, the United Kingdom and the United States met in Geneva on 4 June, 1998 to coordinate their response to the grave situation created by the nuclear tests carried out in May 1998 by India and then by Pakistan. The Ministers condemned these tests, expressed their deep concern about the danger to peace and stability in the region, and pledged to cooperate closely in urgent efforts to prevent a nuclear and missile arms race in the Subcontinent, to bolster the non-proliferation regime, and to encourage reconciliation and peaceful resolution of differences between India and Pakistan.

2. The Ministers agreed that quick action is needed to arrest the further escalation of regional tensions stimulated by the recent nuclear tests. India and Pakistan should therefore stop all further such tests. They should refrain from the weaponization or deployment of nuclear weapons, from the testing or deployment of missiles capable of delivering nuclear weapons, and from any further production of fissile material for nuclear weapons. They should also halt provocative statements, refrain from any military movements that could be construed as threatening and increase transparency in their actions. Direct communications between the parties could help to build confidence.

3. To reinforce security and stability in the region and more widely, the Five strongly believe that India and Pakistan should adhere to the Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty immediately and unconditionally, thereby facilitating its early entry into force. The Five also call upon India and Pakistan to participate, in a positive spirit and on the basis of the agreed mandate, in negotiations with other States in the Conference on Disarmament for a Fissile Material Cut-Off Convention With a view to reaching early agreement. The Five will seek firm commitments by India and Pakistan not to weaponize or deploy nuclear weapons or missiles. India and Pakistan should also confirm their policies not to export equipment, materials or technology that could contribute to weapons of mass destruction or missiles capable of delivering them, and should undertake appropriate commitments in that regard.

4. The Ministers agreed that the international non-proliferation regime must remain strong and effective despite the recent nuclear tests in South Asia. Their goal continues to be adherence by all countries, including India and Pakistan, to the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) as it stands, without any modification. This Treaty is the cornerstone of the non-proliferation regime and the essential foundation for the pursuit of nuclear disarmament. Notwithstanding, their recent nuclear tests, India and Pakistan do not have the status of nuclear-weapons States in accordance with the NPT.

5. The Ministers concluded that efforts to resolve disputes between India and Pakistan must be pursued with determination. The Ministers affirm their readiness to assist India and Pakistan, in a manner acceptable to both sides, in promoting reconciliation and cooperation. The Ministers pledged that they will actively encourage India and Pakistan to find mutually acceptable solutions, through direct dialogue, that address the root causes of the tension, including Kashmir, and to try to build confidence rather than seek confrontation. In that connection, the Ministers urged both parties to avoid threatening military movements, cross-border violations, or other provocative acts.

6. The Ministers also considered what actions the Five could take, individually or collectively, to foster peace and security in South Asia. They will encourage India and Pakistan to adopt practical measures to prevent an arms race. They confirmed their respective policies to prevent the export of equipment, materials or technology that could in any way assist programmes in India or Pakistan for nuclear weapons or for ballistic missiles capable of delivering such weapons. They also undertook to do all they could to facilitate a reduction of tensions between those States, and to provide assistance, at the request of both parties, in the development and implementation of confidence- and security-building measures. They remain determined to fulfill their commitments relating to nuclear disarmament under Article VI of the NPT.

7. The Ministers viewed their meeting in Geneva as setting in motion a process aimed at strengthening peace and stability in South Asia, at encouraging restraint by India and Pakistan at promoting the resolution of outstanding differences, and at bolstering the international non-proliferation regime. They will remain fully engaged in pursuing these goals, and will work actively to build broad support in the international community for the objectives they agreed today."

© 1998 The Acronym Institute.

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