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Disarmament Diplomacy

Issue No. 5, May 1996

A monthly digest of news and documents edited by Sean Howard. Credits

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Editor's introduction

In addition to its regular features, Disarmament Diplomacy this month includes a Guest Analysis - by Geneva-based journalist Jo- Anne Velin - of the state of progress towards a comprehensive landmines ban. Her analysis focuses on the implications of the recently concluded first review conference of the Convention on Certain Conventional Weapons (CCW), which agreed to a revision of its protocol on landmines.

In her latest Geneva Update, Rebecca Johnson surveys the hectic scene at the Conference on Disarmament (CD) in Geneva as it struggles to conclude a Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty (CTBT). The Update includes coverage of initial reactions to the draft CTBT submitted by the Chair of negotiations on 28 May.

Our series of opinion pieces on the future of the CD continues with articles by Harald Muller, Director of the Frankfurt Peace Research Institute, and Henrik Wagenmakers, former Ambassador of the Netherlands to the CD.

Muller systematically deconstructs and reassembles the Conference's agenda, slimming it down from 10 points to 4. His analysis opens with a castigation of the tendency - certainly in evidence at the CD - to "play off nuclear and conventional disarmament against each other." "Clearly," he argues, "they both deserve pride of place on the world's only authoritative negotiating body's agenda."

Closely involved in the establishment of the UN Arms Register, Wagenmakers understandably devotes much attention to the issue of transparency in armaments. Of the Conference's devotion to the issue, he laments: "I confess to feeling frustration about the totally inadequate reception given so far in the CD to the...request made by the UN General Assembly for it to...elaborate universal and non-discriminatory practical means to increase openness and transparency."

Documents and Sources includes material from the CD, the review conference of the Conventional Forces in Europe (CFE) Treaty, the Moscow Nuclear Safety Summit, and the second meeting of the Canberra Commission on the Elimination of Nuclear Weapons.

Stories covered in News Review include the US ballistic missile defence debate, America's decision not to take action against China for an alleged nuclear-weapons related transfer to Pakistan, pronouncements by the temporarily triumphant BJP Party in India, and reaction to US assertions of its right to use nuclear weapons against a chemical weapons attack by a non-nuclear-weapon State ('the Libya scenario'). An extended Editor's Note is also provided on the issue of security assurances.

The CD Agenda: a summary

The agenda, in place since 1978, has ten items, known collectively as The Decalogue.

The Decalogue

Item 1. Nuclear Test Ban

Item 2. Cessation of the Nuclear Arms Race and Nuclear Disarmament

Item 3. Prevention of Nuclear War, including all Related Measures

Item 4. Prevention of an Arms Race in Outer Space

Item 5. Effective International Arrangements to Assure Non-Nuclear- Weapon States Against the Use or Threat of Use of Nuclear Weapons

Item 6. New Types of Weapons of Mass Destruction and New Systems of Such Weapons; Radiological Weapons

Item 7. Comprehensive Programme of Disarmament

Item 8. Transparency in Armaments

Item 9. Consideration of Other Areas Dealing with the Cessation of the Arms Race and Disarmament and Other Relevant Measures

Item 10. Consideration and Adoption of the Annual Report of the Conference and any other Report as Appropriate to the General Assembly of the United Nations

The review so far

For the 1994 Session of the Conference, Sweden's Ambassador, Lars Norberg, was appointed Special Co-ordinator on Review of the Agenda. No Special Co-ordinator was appointed for the 1995 Session. Algeria's Ambassador, Hocine Meghlaoui, has now been appointed as Special Co-ordinator on the Agenda, though his deliberations are principally concerned with the 1996 Session.

The fullest account of the review so far came on 1 September 1994 with Ambassador Norberg's report to the Conference. His statement referred to "divergent views" on the issue of "the appropriate balance" between nuclear and non-nuclear issues:

"...consultations have revealed conflicting views among delegations as to the appropriate balance between nuclear weapons and conventional weapons on the agenda. Divergent views have also been expressed with regard to the question of a possible widening of the CD's scope of activities to include the negotiation of politically binding agreements covering, for example, global confidence building measures or regional questions."

Specifically, Ambassador Norberg said that four of the Decalogue items in particular were inspiring controversy: items 2 (Cessation of the Nuclear Arms Race and Nuclear Disarmament), 3 (Prevention of Nuclear War, including all Related Measures), 7 (Comprehensive Programme of Disarmament) and 8 (Transparency in Armaments).

The review of the CD Agenda - Opinion

Reforming the CD Agenda

By Harald Muller

Introduction: the need for parallel conventional and nuclear disarmament negotiations

Arguments heard during the debate about the future Conference on Disarmament (CD) agenda extolling nuclear arms control to the detriment of conventional arms control or vice versa are unconvincing, if not insincere. There are two strong reasons why both issues must be pursued, not only in a deliberative, but also in a negotiation mode.

First, there is an intricate link between conventional and nuclear armament. The link is provided by a well-known mechanism of international politics, the security dilemma. Not being able to know the intentions of their neighbours with any certainty - particularly if they represent non-transparent systems of government - States' security planning has to rely on assessments of military capability. Perceived imbalances in conventional forces - their quality, quantity, deployment, and doctrine - give incentives to consider nuclear weapons as a means of compensation. And once nuclear weapons are in the possession of a country, a strong drive exists not only to protect their integrity by ever- growing conventional means, but also to give national leaders alternatives with a view to avoid the agonizing decision to employ these terrible weapons in war. Hence, all nuclear and de facto nuclear-weapon States (NWS) dispose of strong conventional arms establishments.

The second argument concerns the intrinsic necessity to come to grips with either type of weapon. Nuclear weapons are of unprecedented destructive power; they are, in my view, inherently at odds with the requirements of the humanitarian law of war; and the probability that they might be used accidentally or in an unauthorized manner, or in a planned and intentional manner, is above zero as long as they do exist. Nuclear disarmament is thus a must.

Conventional weapons, on the other hand, are the weapons that have killed and are killing millions of people since the last World War. They are feedstuff for arms races at the regional level and contribute much to the security dilemma. Conventional weapons lure States into war by escalation even when governments had not intended to enter fighting. They are also the main drain on national budgets needed for much more urgent purposes.

For these reasons, it is futile to play off nuclear and conventional disarmament against each other. Clearly, they both deserve pride of place on the world's only authoritative negotiating body's agenda.

Simplifying the present CD Agenda

With this principle in mind, we can take a hard and realistic look at the present CD agenda.

Item 1, the Nuclear Test Ban, will hopefully disappear as a result of successful negotiations.

Item 2, the Cessation of the Nuclear Arms Race and Nuclear Disarmament, should be kept as one main item. However, Item 3, Prevention of Nuclear War including all Related Measures, should be melted with Item 2, because it is logically nonsensical to conceive of preventive measures that would not also create more favourable conditions for nuclear disarmament, or of nuclear disarmament measures that would not also be conducive to preventing nuclear war.

Item 4, Prevention of an Arms Race in Outer Space, owes its birth to a special phase during the East-West conflict. In fact, the Outer Space Treaty gives a sound framework for the 'prevention', and, if needed, it could and should be amended by the parties according to the procedure of Article XV. There is no need to burden the CD anymore with this subject. Most CD members are parties to this Treaty, and the few non-parties would certainly see the incentive to accede if something relevant would happen among its parties; this, in turn, would be a welcome strengthening of this international instrument. This would contribute far more effectively to shaping a viable order for outer space than the inconsequential talk that has characterised the handling of Item 4 within the CD.

Item 5, Effective International Arrangements to Assure Non-Nuclear- Weapon States Against the Use or Threat of Use of Nuclear Weapons, is important, as emphasized by the Principles and Objectives adopted by the Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) Review and Extension Conference in 1995. However, the subject of negative security assurances (NSAs) is losing its saliency with the growth of nuclear-weapon-free zones (NWFZs). The Protocols to the NWFZ Treaties contain legally binding NSAs. Once the African and Association of South East Asia Nations (ASEAN) NWFZ enter into force, the vast majority of non-aligned countries will thus be covered by treaty-fixed, rather than unilateral, guarantees. This does not eliminate the eventual need for a global legal instrument for NSA, but it reduces the political pressure considerably.

Positive security assurances (PSAs), in contrast, have not received the same attention, despite repeated initiatives by Egypt. They are, however, of great importance for both conventional and nuclear disarmament. PSAs can relieve States from pressure to procure both nuclear and conventional arms in response to a perceived nuclear threat.

However, another consideration enters at this point: the issue of security assurances cannot and should not be debated out of the context of nuclear disarmament. It cannot, because how security will be guaranteed in a non-nuclear world against the sudden breakout - or attempt at breakout - of a non-faithful party is a question that must be answered convincingly if complete nuclear disarmament is ever to come. It should not, because the separate treatment of security assurances from a nuclear disarmament agenda conveys a degree of legitimacy on the possession of nuclear arms that is undesirable.

As guarantors of both negative and positive security assurances, nuclear-weapon States become parties to treaties, protocols, or non-legal agreements without any hint that their respective roles can only be temporary, pending nuclear disarmament. That is worse than the NPT, whose Preamble and Article VI contain at least the prospect for nuclear disarmament, however vaguely. Thus, it appears advisable to move Item 5 into Item 2 as well.

Item 6 - New Types of Weapons of Mass Destruction and New Systems of Such Weapons, Radiological Weapons - has largely been a dead letter in recent years. It is hard to see how to negotiate about weapons that one does not know ('New Types'), while Radiological Weapons belong well in the field of nuclear disarmament. The transparency and verification measures that would accompany a viable convention on radiological weapons would be a useful framework-condition for both further nuclear disarmament - as transparency in the NWS parties would be enhanced - and nuclear non-proliferation - as knowledge about non-nuclear-weapon States' (NNWS) nuclear activities would also arise.

Item 7, Comprehensive Programme of Disarmament, is pie-in-the-sky that should be dropped forthwith. The complete lack of substance in this title will forever prevent CD members from doing anything useful and reasonable with it. Disarmament remains the final objective of all the CD's activities. It needs no extra spot on the agenda.

Item 8, Transparency in Armaments, is a useful item whose substance should be kept, but which should be divided into its nuclear and non-nuclear components, and the relevance of the nuclear aspect should finally be recognized by the nuclear-weapon States.

Item 9 is basically 'Any Other Business'. This is reasonable, since no agenda will ever be so all-encompassing as to prove incapable of being surprised by new developments. This is also the place where 'New Weapons of Mass Destruction', the first part of Item 6, should be dealt with if necessary.

Item 10, the annual report, is a legitimate routine item.

The reformed agenda

Thus, my reformed CD agenda would contain just four items:

1. Nuclear disarmament, including prevention of nuclear war, security assurances, radiological weapons, and transparency in nuclear weapons (e.g. a nuclear weapons register).

2. Conventional disarmament, including transparency in conventional armaments (e.g. a global manoeuvre calendar, or an agreement for small arms control), and confidence-building measures. I would plead for tearing down the artificial wall that still separates disarmament talks from humanitarian law, whatever dogmatic zealots of international law may say about it. The debate on blinding lasers and landmines has clearly shown how close the relation is.

3. Any Other Business, including new types of weapons of mass destruction.

4. Annual report.

The CD should define, for both items 1 and 2, one substantial issue respectively on which negotiations would be conducted. Experiences with the CD show clearly that it is overwhelmingly difficult for the delegations to pursue with equal zeal more than one intense and central negotiation. The two years of hammering out the Chemical Weapons Convention (CWC) are as telling as the period since the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty (CTBT) negotiations started. Yet it is not completely impossible to do more than one thing at a time. The VEREX exercise and the working group on the Biological Weapons Convention (BWC) verification protocol was very much in the hands of the same delegations that were involved in the CTBT negotiations, with due support by experts from home governments. Some marginal improvement in staffing of both the CD Secretariat and the delegations might consolidate the two-track capacity of the CD. However, it is safe to conclude that it would be virtually impossible to work on more than two subjects at a time in a serious way.

Negotiating business would then take most of the time during each CD session. Each session, however, should reserve some time for:

a) reporting, including questions and answers, on respective disarmament negotiations, or implementation of existing agreements, outside of the CD. This would enable the CD to take stock of ongoing talks, for example, between the P-5, or in the Middle East regional security talks. And:

b) further planning, where priorities should be discussed with a view to approach consensus on the next subject for negotiations, once the ongoing negotiations had concluded.

The relation of the CD to regional negotiations and the enhanced NPT review

With this proposed arrangement, two questions remain to be answered. Can the CD negotiate conventional measures that are mainly of regional concern? And what is the relation between the CD and the enhanced NPT review process?

As for the first question, balances of forces, and agreements on force deployments, are certainly better negotiated at the regional level (e.g. the CFE Treaty). However, global arrangements, particularly in the areas of transparency, or of transfer control, might provide useful frameworks within which regional arrangements will be concluded more easily. Transparency measures like reporting on weapons holdings, for example, might open the path for even more intrusive measures at the regional level.

On the second question, some appear to believe that the enhanced review process is a full substitute for the CD in the area of nuclear disarmament. This is unconvincing and politically dangerous. The enhanced review is a body of deliberation, not a negotiating body. Certainly, it carries particular legitimacy as it embodies a bargain between nuclear and non-nuclear-weapon States whereby the latter renounce the possession of nuclear arms, while the former promise to pursue nuclear disarmament. The enhanced review is thus in a position to assess the progress in nuclear disarmament, and to make recommendations - politically binding on the parties - on which steps should be taken next. It has no mandate to negotiate such steps. Thus, it should give its suggestions to the CD, and the CD should take its suggestions seriously and act on them, as the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) takes the final documents of NPT review conferences seriously and takes action accordingly. But just as the NPT review does not replace the IAEA, it cannot replace the CD. And any attempt to play off one against the other is futile and counter- productive.


To conclude, I believe that the CD's agenda can be considerably shortened, that empty talk can be deleted and that the body can be focused on its serious business - negotiating the highest priority of the day in both the nuclear and conventional disarmament field. And since the occasion is too good to be missed, let me add a heartfelt call for the abolition of the UN Disarmament Commission that, between an enlarged CD and the UN First Committee, serves no purpose but to distract already overburdened negotiators from their serious business.

Harald Muller is Director of the Frankfurt Peace Research Institute.

The future of the CD: priorities for reform

By Henrik Wagenmakers

Introduction: The CD's objective

The goal of the Conference on Disarmament (CD) is to negotiate, on the basis of consensus, formal multilateral agreements on nuclear, chemical and conventional arms. At present the CD is composed of 38 full members from all regions of the world. There are also some 40 observer States who participate in the discussions but not in the decision-making process.

The CD balance sheet

During the Cold War, the CD, and its predecessor committees, negotiated the Partial Test Ban Treaty (PTBT - 1963), the Outer Space Treaty (1967), the Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT - 1968), the Sea-Bed Treaty (1971) and the Bacteriological (Biological) and Toxin Weapons Convention (BWC - 1972).

The Strategic Arms Limitation (SALT) and Anti-Ballistic Missile (ABM) treaties (1972), the Intermediate Nuclear Forces (INF - 1987), Conventional Forces in Europe (CFE - 1990) and Strategic Arms Reduction (START) (1991 & 1993) treaties were concluded outside the CD framework as a result of the changing nature and, later, the collapse of the East-West conflict. They were negotiated either between the two superpowers or between the two main military blocs.

The Conference of the Commission on Disarmament (CDD) elaborated the 1977 Convention on the Prohibition of Military of Any Other Hostile Use of Environmental Modification Techniques (ENMOD).

However, the CD's major feat is the completion in 1993 of the Chemical Weapons Convention (CWC). An innovative feature - next to the CWC's intrusive verification provisions - is that it constitutes the first treaty text completed in the CD which is not based purely on a prior American-Soviet compromise text.

The CD influences events in other fora. For example, work in the CD was particularly helpful to achieving the indefinite extension of the Non-Proliferation Treaty in 1995. The completion of a Test Ban Treaty later this year should constitute an important milestone. However, it has to be observed that the current treatment given in the CD to conventional weapons is inadequate.

The CD's chemistry

The choice of Geneva to be the base for arms control and disarmament efforts of the international community relates to the history of similar talks in the 1920s and 1930s. Parts of that history linger on.

It is true that over the years the Geneva disarmament talks were caught in the constraints imposed by the East-West confrontation. No delegation, from whatever quarter, could escape from its shadow.

In years of the deep frost of the Cold War, the dialogue was maintained in the Geneva disarmament forum. It should be kept in mind that Geneva provided the only forum where both the superpowers and other States maintained discussions on arms control and disarmament.

A trend towards democratization is to be found in the organizational structure and political opening up of the CD's predecessor body. This occurred when the 10th Special Session of the UN General Assembly devoted to Disarmament agreed in 1978 to the expansion of the 18-member Conference of the Commission on Disarmament (CCD) to the 40-member CD. The new status of the CD was not only the expression of the start of the easing of international tensions but also of democratization. It marked the ending of the US-Soviet co-chairmanship practised in the CCD. Another aspect of the same process is the fact that at present the number of actively participating non-member States is higher than ever. It is long overdue that this active participation be recognized by having the States concerned join the CD as full members.

What do we find in the CD today? For almost two decades a world- wide negotiating body, of limited size but geopolitically representative, has provided a platform for open deliberation and negotiation to a wide spectrum of States with greatly varying interests. The CD is in permanent session for a good deal of the year. The exchanges of views are, as a rule, characterized by a high degree of development of common understandings in the analysis of problems. The level of those who address the CD has been, and is, often that of the highest ranking politicians and diplomats. Willingness to listen, to absorb the thoughts offered, is invariably there. Issues are identified, data provided, priorities determined and mechanisms chosen - be it not always in unison. The competence acquired in the CD fosters the development of common terminology. New concepts are given the chance to mature in the minds of participants of the CD. The gradual acceptance of verification as an indispensable ingredient for effective arms control serves as an example.

The end of the Cold War has had an undeniable effect on Group dynamics: notably a shift from East-West to North-South. However, the picture is more complex than just a North-South divide, as witnessed by the realities of regional issues brought to the fore (e.g. Middle East and the Indian subcontinent).

The tasks entrusted to the CD

The CD's modest track record in statistical terms is not only due to political constraints. It is a basic fact that the objectives set out for the international community have been over-ambitious. Take for instance paragraph 19 of the Final Document of the 10th Special Session of the UN General Assembly devoted to Disarmament: "The ultimate objective of the efforts of States in the disarmament process is general and complete disarmament under effective international control." Inevitably, this grandiose concept brings to mind visions like those of Isaiah's: "the wolf dwelling with the lamb, the lion eating straw like the ox." Transpose this scene into the realities of today's world festering with religious feuds, ethnic strife, nationalistic threats and aggression (Kuwait!). The conclusion is clear: weapons are there and are being used. Even if there were a general desire to dispense with them - quod non - States, and the international community for that matter, still need arms for the purpose of legitimate self defence.

This is not to say that inspiration and aspiration should be stifled. On the contrary: life without hope and dreams is not worthwhile!

My only criticism is that arms negotiations, like those in the CD, have often been plagued by overly generalized and sweeping approaches. Harsh, intractable realities have been ignored. For example, the - incontestable - over-accumulation of arms along the East-West axis, notably in Europe, has been portrayed as the fundamental obstacle on the road to peace, and the Superpowers and their allies have constantly been reminded that the onus for disarmament lay on them: the fact ignored being that all the hundreds of thousands of victims of bloody conflicts fought after the Second World War did not die in Europe.

Of course, one might object that I, in my turn, risk making sweeping statements. Still, I do maintain that broad, instinctive conceptualizations have often beset negatively the way in which the CD's agenda is addressed. It is not just the old debate of arms control versus disarmament. Nor is it merely a question of acceptability of deterrence as a means of keeping the peace.

The CD cannot continue to show a detachment from the realities of conflicts raging throughout the world, in the Balkans, the Caucasus, Africa and Asia. Stability in the Gulf region remains threatened by volatility in the aftermath of the Gulf War.

Reform of the CD agenda

The text of the 10 items of the CD agenda, the so called 'Decalogue', reflects a high degree of compromise in which the notion of specific arms control measures lost out against generalized ideas about, mostly nuclear, disarmament.

Unless a substantial change in the Decalogue constituting the present agenda is brought about, the CD risks being consigned to the periphery of efforts to enhance global security.

To avoid misunderstanding: the Comprehensive Test Ban must be completed, the Convention banning the Production of Fissile Material for Nuclear Weapons and other Explosive Devices must get underway. In conjunction with the conclusion of these most important Conventions there is ample room to consolidate the nuclear issues to one or two CD agenda items instead of the present five.

In parallel to that specific agenda items should be drawn up to ensure that major conventional weapons are to be dealt with too. The conventional weapons concerned range from the most advanced (combat aircraft, missiles, warships, artillery systems) to the simple and crude (anti-personnel mines). They could include also all dual use technologies. The CD can draw inspiration from the categories to be found in the UN Register of Conventional Arms.

Another area for inclusion on the CD agenda is co-operative technology transfer. In that respect the recent recognition by the Secretary-General of the UN of the importance of regionalism, notably of regional co-operation in conflict prevention, is to be taken into account.

The agenda item 'Comprehensive Programme of Disarmament' is outdated and redundant. Rather the CD should recognize that the promise held out by specific - in preference to comprehensive - approaches stands the best chance of being fulfilled if the arms control effort is linked to stabilizing parallel confidence and transparency measures. By thus giving practical shape to the recognition that arms are a deadly symptom, not a cause, of tension, the CD could assist in the negotiation of meaningful measures of co-operative security between partners willing to engage themselves in that way.

How can one ignore the fact that the era of generalized arms treaties is over? Compare for instance the scope and nature of agreements like the Sea-Bed Treaty and the ENMOD Convention with that of the INF and CFE treaties. The first two conventions seek to stem an arms race in general terms; the latter two treaties provide for the elimination and reduction of whole classes of existing arms.

Amongst all the revolutionary developments witnessed in Europe, one of the dogmas that had to be abandoned was the conventional thesis that in the natural order of things it is disarmament that leads to peace. The European experience seems apt to demonstrate that genuine detente, peace, precedes and stimulates arms treaties. And we have not seen the end yet. The transformation of the CSCE (Conference on Security and Cooperation in Europe) agreements embodied in the Helsinki Final Act into an Organization for Co-operation and Security in Europe is a convincing example of how to go about the execution of Europe's new security agenda.

The European experience demonstrates that it is the resolution of political conflict that is the leading edge of the changes necessary to enable disarmament measures to be negotiated. The OCSE symbolizes Europe's recognition that today's problems are multi-dimensional in nature and do not lend themselves to an exclusively military solution.

All of this demonstrates amply that the CD agenda should be revamped; the CD can not permit itself the luxury of not facing up to the new security situation of the nineties. If the challenge is not taken up, the CD will become an irrelevance.

In addition to the agenda reform, of course the membership should be expanded. Such expansion should be to a realistic and practical level which will maintain the CD as a credible negotiating body and avoid it degenerating into just a talking shop.

My assessment is that, if the CD did not exist, it would have to be invented. The task of gaining agreement on substantive matters pertaining to the multi-faceted security requirements of our world community is more urgent than ever. Inspiration can be derived from the strong message given in the Presidential statement made on 31 January 1992 at the conclusion of the meeting of the UN Security Council at the level of Heads of State and Government.

In the spirit of that statement the CD will have to address newly emerging issues: transparency in armaments as both a global and regional confidence-building measure, regional approaches, objective information on military matters, outer space, proliferation in its various aspects, transfers of technology and conversion.

There is so much that the CD can accomplish. By tradition as well as by its discipline, the CD is uniquely placed to meet such challenges. The approach to be followed should not be, as the saying goes, that the sky is the limit. The work of the CD should be practical and down to earth; it has to engage in a permanent, structured dialogue on co-operative security.

I confess to feeling frustration about the totally inadequate reception given so far in the CD to the practically universally supported request made by the UN General Assembly for it to address, as soon as possible, the question of the interrelated aspects of the excessive and destabilizing accumulation of arms, including military holdings and procurement through national production, and to elaborate universal and non-discriminatory practical means to increase openness and transparency in this field.

What better task for a multilateral body like the CD than to engage the world community in efforts to arrive at a situation in which States are fully informed of arms purchases by their neighbours? Participation in the UN Register on Conventional Arms can be used by the UN member States to demonstrate to all, notably their neighbours, that their procurement of arms serves no other goal than to provide a sufficiency for self defence.

It is most unfortunate that the CD has not embraced this unprecedented opportunity to help establish the UN Register on Conventional Arms, operative since 1 January 1992, as an ongoing success. The drive for Transparency in Armaments is reflective of one of the pressing needs of today's international community.

Therefore 'Transparency in Armaments' should be inscribed without further ado as a new CD agenda item and vigorous discussions pursued.

Henrik Wagenmakers is the Ambassador of the Netherlands to Greece. He was formerly Ambassador to the CD. The views expressed in the paper are his own, and do not necessarily reflect the position of the Government of the Netherlands.

Reader's responses

The contributors and Editor encourage readers to submit responses, to be considered for publication, to the arguments put forward above.

Robert McNamara's article in issue No. 4 ('The Conference on Disarmament should focus on steps to move toward a "nuclear free world") inspired a counter-article - 'McNamara is mistaken!' - by Edward C. Perry II, a member of the Peace with Justice Committee of the California-Pacific Conference of the United Methodist Church. An abridged version of his article follows.

McNamara is mistaken!

McNamara proposed nuclear disarmament and, as a member of the Canberra Commission, predicted that a similar proposal would be its conclusion. Here is a different conclusion:

Soon after the Cuban missile crises, the US and USSR began negotiating the Nuclear Non-proliferation Treaty (NPT). They, plus Britain, wanted to make sure that there would be no new nuclear nations. The non-nuclear nations drove a hard bargain. If they had to forego nuclear weapons, everyone must give up nuclear weapons. They forced the nuclear powers to agree (Article VI of the NPT) that 'Each of the parties to the treaty undertakes to pursue negotiations in good faith on effective measures relating to cessation of the nuclear arms race at an early date and to nuclear disarmament, and on a treaty on general and complete disarmament under strict and effective international control.'

It should be noted that Article VI has three goals: 1) ending the nuclear arms race, 2) nuclear disarmament and 3) general and complete disarmament.

1) End the nuclear arms race

The Conference on Disarmament was asked to negotiate a Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty (CTBT) with the implication that the end of testing would end the arms race. To the contrary, the United States will develop new nuclear weapons with 'zero yield' tests and computers. The United States will continue the nuclear arms race even if we are the only nation in that race.

2) Nuclear disarmament

McNamara proposed that we go to the second goal. He concluded that 'the Conference on Disarmament is the forum in which such a process should begin.' The Conference on Disarmament cannot negotiate a CTBT, how could it possibly negotiate nuclear disarmament?

McNamara is a member of the Canberra Commission and he predicted that it would recommend the elimination of nuclear weapons. Accordingly, Australia will propose nuclear disarmament. However, there is no indication that Australia will be any more successful than the Soviet Union was when it proposed nuclear disarmament ten years ago. In January 1986 Mikhail Gorbachev announced that 'the Soviet Union is proposing a step-by-step and consistent process of ridding the Earth of nuclear weapons, to be implemented and completed within the next fifteen years, before the end of the century.' President Reagan rejected the proposal. One reason that he offered was that the Soviet Union had an advantage in combat troops in Central Europe.

McNamara fails to take into account the following considerations:

* We [the US] could not eliminate nuclear weapons because we were using them. Dan Ellsberg told us at the Third Global Structures Convocation that the United States has 'used' nuclear weapons over a dozen times. He defined 'use' as the way a bank robber 'uses' a gun.

* We are still 'using' nuclear weapons. Recently the 'use' was against North Korea. North Korea announced that an embargo would be considered an act of war to which it would respond accordingly. One response could have been to convert the nuclear power plants in South Korea into Chernobyls. The US had to assume that this threat was real and prepared for war. In poker terms - we called their bluff. We needed more than conventional weapons so we again 'used' nuclear weapons.

* Nuclear disarmament is impossible while these weapons are still being 'used'. It would upset the military balance - a violation of one of the key principles of disarmament negotiations. This principle makes multilateral disarmament negotiations difficult unless the proposed balance is at zero for all weapons - general and complete disarmament.

3) General and complete disarmament

In modern times this disarmament goal reached a peak in September 1961 when the United States and the Soviet Union proposed it in their 'Joint Statement of Agreed Principles for Disarmament Negotiations' and President John F. Kennedy told the United Nations General Assembly: 'Today, every inhabitant of this planet must contemplate the day when this planet may no longer be habitable. Every man, woman and child lives under a nuclear sword of Damocles, hanging by the slenderest of threads, capable of being cut at any moment by accident or miscalculation or by madness. The weapons of war must be abolished before they abolish us.' He went on to challenge the Soviet Union, 'not to an arms race, but to a peace race - to advance together step by step, stage by stage, until general and complete disarmament has been achieved.'

This goal was taken from the Joint Statement... which stated, 'All disarmament measures should be implemented from beginning to end under such strict and effective international control as would provide firm assurance that all parties are honoring their obligations.' To accomplish this, the US and USSR proposed, 'Creation of an International Disarmament Organization With Inspectors Having Unrestricted Access Everywhere Without Veto for Full Verification.' This organization would have been above a Security Council veto!

The Joint Statement was issued in September 1961 but Herman Kahn had discussed complete disarmament a year earlier, in his 1960 book "On Thermonuclear War". He wrote, "While total disarmament can be ruled out as an immediate possibility, one can conceive of some sort of international authority which might have a monopoly of war-making capability. Such a postulated international authority would have to have enough power to be able to overwhelm any nation that had reserved hidden destructive potential." He then listed six possibilities - one of which was world government. He ended consideration of this concept with, "I believe that even a poor world government might be preferable to an uncontrolled arms race, I also believe that the practical difficulties are so large that it is a digression to dwell on such possibilities as a possible solution for the problems of the sixties."

We are now considering solutions for the problems of the twenty- first century so this idea should be reconsidered. The first step is to change the idea from world government to global governance. We have created institutions for global governance without creating a world government. The most recent example is the World Trade Organization (WTO). Surely, world peace and the survival of humanity are more important than world trade.

Benjamin Ferencz has suggested that a system of global governance can be created with Security Council resolutions. In his 1994 book "New Legal Foundations for Global Survival; Security Through the Security Council" he offered twelve security council resolutions for peace. Dr. Ferencz has been in international law since, at age 27, he was designated the Chief Prosecutor for the United States in the Nuremberg war crimes trial.

His system of global governance would impose total disarmament by Security Council resolutions. Security Council resolutions were used to conduct the Gulf War and to impose severe disarmament requirement on one nation - Iraq. Can they be used to impose general and complete disarmament on all nations?

The Ferencz Plan has twelve resolutions: a) Five Security Council resolutions defining the legal obligations essential for peace. b) Three resolutions empowering judicial organs to interpret the laws of peace, adjudicate disputes and punish violators. And c) Four resolutions setting up special enforcement agencies to see that every peace mandate is fully implemented and carried out in the shortest possible time.

In drafting new binding legal obligations for disarmament, he used the Joint Statement of Agreed Principles for Disarmament Negotiations. As noted above, this was the basis for the complete disarmament promise in the NPT. Instead of the treaty called for in the NPT, Dr. Ferencz has proposed a system of global governance. Instead of a gentleman's agreement between sovereign States to disarm, (unless their vital national interests dictates otherwise) Ferencz proposed an international authority to impose general and complete disarmament.

You can almost here the politicians crying over the loss of national sovereignty. However, Senator Daniel Patrick Moynihan is one exception. He wrote, "This book is a thoughtful, practical and above all, timely examination of how to promote peace and security in the world. It advances the proposition - once at the core of American foreign policy - that increasing the salience of international law can help to regulate and mitigate violence in the world. And it is in our best interests. It should be read by those who despair of finding any useful steps forward from a world of anarchy and ethnic turmoil."


Robert McNamara advanced the second disarmament goal in the NPT - nuclear disarmament - based largely on his experience in the Cuban missile crises and his membership in the Canberra Commission. Accordingly he suggested that the Conference on Disarmament was the appropriate forum.

McNamara is mistaken!

Nuclear disarmament was proposed ten years ago by the Soviet Union and rejected because it would upset the military balance and because the threat of nuclear weapons has become very useful. It is difficult to believe that Australia will be successful, where the Soviet Union failed with a similar proposal.

The pragmatic approach is to go to the third and inclusive disarmament goal in the NPT. However this goal should be reworded to emphasize that "strict and effective international control" is the first objective. Disarmament verification "without veto" will require a system of global governance so the appropriate forum is the United Nations Security Council.

Guest Analysis - Landmines

Diplomacy after the negotiation: Protocol II and the Anti- Personnel Landmine Ban

By Jo-Anne Velin


Following two and a half years of negotiations, the 57 States Parties at the first review conference of the UN's 1980 Convention on Certain Conventional Weapons (CCW) wound up their efforts to strengthen customary international humanitarian law on landmines by adopting a new protocol (see Appendix A for detailed summary and assessment) in Geneva on 3 May. The review process, inspired and in many senses driven by strong humanitarian non-governmental organisation (NGO) campaigns, may have changed forever how future international humanitarian law will be shaped. But the revised protocol is still a long way off from an effective global anti- personnel landmine ban and has left many of those following the issue asking where the diplomatic search for a total ban will go from here.

Protocol II

Even though Protocol II is a customary international humanitarian law agreement, and countries had assembled to discuss the use of landmines, negotiators weren't shy about borrowing whatever seemed helpful from other bodies of international law to give Protocol II a few teeth.

International lawyers participating in the negotiations say the revised Protocol II has ventured deeper into traditional arms control and disarmament terrain than any other humanitarian law treaty. These new features concern restrictions and prohibitions on landmine transfers, implied production limitations, and an embryonic monitoring framework. But there's resistance against going further: some delegations that accepted this kind of open jurisprudence on the one hand, also occasionally - and transparently - reverted back to strict legal arguments when turning down specific proposals they were not politically ready to accept.

If the new agreement is the best that could be got both politically and legally, the new rules cannot and will not be enough to stop the humanitarian disaster caused by anti-personnel landmines. Some of the delegations conceded that the new rules will encourage accelerated production of the kind of mines permitted under the Protocol, such as self-destructing and self- deactivating mines launched by the thousands from aircraft and artillery. A robust growth is now anticipated in the production, transfer and use of these mines. The International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) - which acted as the Technical Rapporteur for the Review Conference - noted that the new Protocol "promotes the development and use of new weapons - a first for an IHL [international humanitarian law] agreement."

Military arguments

How indispensable are anti-personnel landmines to a country's defense? The outcome of the review conference suggests that they may become one weapon countries can, in the not-so-long-term, learn to do without. However, some argue that the revised Protocol shows that the humanitarian prerogative, at this stage, still comes second to military chauvinism. As one Eastern Group delegate said last May, "the main concept is [the] transfer from old mines to new ones." No delegation realistically expected the review conference to result in a comprehensive anti-personnel mine (APM) ban. What the review process has done, however, is needle, provoke and stimulate military circles into serious reviews, resulting in some cases in important changes of policy.

Under political and public pressure, military doctrines can and have quickly developed an emphasis on avoiding APM use. In the seven months between the opening of the review conference in Vienna in October 1995 and its conclusion in Geneva in early May 1996, a further 25 countries declared various degrees of unilateral bans or moratoriums on APM production, use and transfer, bringing the total number to over 40. The focus now is on those powerful countries which have dug their heels in to preserve anti-personnel landmines - the US (which has since made some limited policy changes), China, India, Russia, and Pakistan. No comprehensive global ban will stick without these countries' support.

The nature of the anti-landmines campaign

So far, the driving force behind the campaign for a total ban has been the international coalition of over 450 NGOs, and the ICRC. Growing since 1991, the coalition has emphatically put the issue on the international agenda: in 1993, backed by a formal request from US Senator Patrick Leahy, it persuaded French President Francois Mitterrand to ask the UN Secretary-General to call for the CCW review conference; it's been instrumental in persuading over 40 countries to commit themselves unilaterally to a comprehensive APM ban; and it's provided much substantial research and many well-grounded arguments in support of an outright, global ban. However, it may also be fast approaching the limit of what it can achieve in countries where public opinion exerts little or no influence on weapons policy.

A second potentially powerful group to emerge is the above- mentioned group of over 40 countries which have acted unilaterally. It's in their interest to build on the momentum they have helped to create, and explore ways to keep up the campaign's momentum in multilateral and regional forums.

Multilateral initiatives

1. The UN.

Most diplomats expect that energy will soon shift to preparing for next Fall's UN General Assembly (UNGA), where at least three resolutions are expected to be tabled: one asking Member States to sign up to the CCW ("an annual request," confirmed one negotiator); one asking the UNGA to endorse the results of the review conference ("Apple pie and motherhood," remarked another); and a new one, circulated by Canada at the end of the review conference, calling on States "to implement moratoria and/or bans on the transfer, production, and operational use of anti-personnel landmines..." This latter resolution, however, is not expected to get a majority of the UN's 187 Member States on board this Fall.

Leading up to the UNGA, Canada is hosting a brainstorming strategy- session in Ottawa in September for pro-ban countries and selected NGOs (as of the time of writing - 29 May - an invitation list and agenda were not available). Some critics fear that this 'clubby' approach will contribute to polarising States into pro- and anti- ban camps, to the detriment of the overall humanitarian effort. Supporters of the Canadian offer, on the other hand, see the September meeting from a pragmatic perspective, saying it just continues what many pro-ban countries were doing through the review conference, and also affirms the working relationship with pro-ban NGOs.

2. The CD.

Moving landmines onto the CD agenda was listed as one multilateral option in the UNGA draft resolution put forward by Canada. The idea was also amplified by US Secretary of State Warren Christopher following the American mines policy announcement of 16 May.

The advantage of pursuing a global APM ban in the CD is, according to one analyst, that "those countries which should be there are there. They can't escape the issue." Getting the issue on the CD agenda would normally follow a decision - adopted unanimously or overwhelmingly - in the UNGA recommending such a course of action. It would also depend on consensus among the, currently 37, CD Member States.

Set against the proposal is the consideration that the sense of humanitarian urgency that has so far moved the issue ahead so rapidly might be snowed under in the CD. As one veteran of both the CD and the Protocol II negotiations put it, "if you want [the issue] to go nowhere, put it in the CD."

3. The CCW.

Another option being mooted is the creation of a separate body for the CCW. The new Protocol II obliges the High Contracting Parties to meet annually, in an attempt to encourage them to compare notes on how the new agreement is being implemented. Should a Secretariat be constructed around this event?

4. The European Union (EU).

Within the EU, committed pro-ban countries like Germany, Ireland, and Belgium, can be expected to continue lobbying for a common EU pro-ban policy by addressing the particular concerns of hesitant EU Member States. However, mid-May's CODUN (Cooperation on Disarmament in the UN System) meeting in Brussels produced nothing concrete.

Regional initiatives

1. The Organisation of American States (OAS).

At the OAS's forthcoming annual General Assembly in Panama, 3-7 June, a resolution proposed by St. Lucia and Canada will call on the Organisation "to adopt the goals of global elimination of anti- personnel landmines and the creation of a Western Hemisphere Wide Anti-Personnel Landmine Free Zone." (Wording taken from the draft resolution available on 20 May.)

2. ICRC-sponsored meetings.

Two forthcoming regional meetings of Defence and Foreign Ministries sponsored by the ICRC - in Nicaragua, 28-29 May and Indonesia, 29-30 May - will cover demining, and legal and political aspects of the mines issue.

3. The Organisation of African Unity (OAU).

Finally, the Chiefs of Staff of 19 African armies are due to meet in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, 3-5 June, and may discuss the issue. The OAU declaration of February 1996 certainly sets the tone for progress there.

Conclusion: assessment of initiatives

With regard to both regional and multilateral initiatives, it's too early to say which birds will fly. Generally, countries are uncertain how they will move forward. While some are keen to keep pushing, many say they need time to absorb the new rules. In some cases due to legal confusion over how aspiring States Parties can sign up for the new Protocol II, this means figuring out how to become a State Party to the CCW - in itself a steeplechase. Diplomatic proposals on mines are expected to shake themselves out after the CTBT is (hopefully) put to bed at the end of June - many of the negotiators handle both dossiers.

Although the international landmine banning campaign led by the NGOs and ICRC is continuing steadily to expand its stable of supportive countries, thinking in Washington, Moscow, Beijing, or Islamabad may not change - at least sufficiently - anytime soon. The political, diplomatic, and military effort to ban anti- personnel mines requires stamina and a little lateral thinking to carry it beyond the date when the revised Second Protocol will enter into force - which, it's now estimated, will take one to one and a half years.

Appendix A

Article-by-Article: extracts from a journalist's notebook on Protocol II


According to the ICRC, even though the new Protocol II combines elements of international humanitarian law (use of the weapon), disarmament law (production prohibitions and standards, though these are implied) and arms control (restrictions on transfers), it remains an international humanitarian law document. According to Peter Herby, of the ICRC's Legal Division: "If States decide that in the 1980 Convention they want to introduce a prohibition on production, for example, there's nothing legally preventing them from doing so."

Article 1: Scope

The Protocol has been extended to apply to internal as well as international armed conflicts, using language borrowed from common Article 3 of the 1949 Geneva Conventions.

Laser weapons

In Vienna, it was suggested that the scope of the newly agreed Laser Weapons Protocol should be the same as the scope for the mines protocol. In fact, the Laser Weapons Protocol still applies only to international conflicts.

Article 2: Definitions

Clause 2 - remotely-delivered mines: "Mines delivered from a land- based system from less than 500 metres are not considered to be 'remotely delivered'..." This definition sounds arbitrary but it preserves the British Ranger delivery system, keeping it out of the remote-delivery category. Experts say Ranger is not being used with self-destructing and self-deactivating mines - the only kind of mine that can be "remotely delivered" according to the revised protocol.

Article 3: General Restrictions on Use

Clause 5. Anti-detection devices that set off the mine if it senses a metal-detector nearby, are prohibited.

Clause 6. Anti-handling devices are not allowed to outlive a mine's self-deactivating feature. Several military experts expect anti-handling devices to become a standard feature on anti-vehicle (anti-tank) mines, to prevent theft of these often expensive, bulky weapons. The Chinese and Russians claim they need anti- handling devices on some APMs.

On the whole, countries want to keep their anti-tank mines. Elements of the Protocol that could have threatened this did not survive the negotiation. The ICRC has prepared a detailed comment on how future development of dual-use landmines may undermine progress made in the review conference. Its Update No. 8 on the Review Conference states:

"An ambiguous definition of anti-personnel mines, which are now specifically regulated, was introduced, despite vigorous objections by the ICRC and agreement by many States that it constitutes a dangerous ambiguity. (AP mines are defined as mines 'primarily designed to be exploded by the presence, proximity or contact of a person...') This definition could be used to exclude any dual-use AP mines which can be claimed to serve another 'primary' purpose. Some twenty western States, led by Germany, introduced an official interpretation of the word 'primarily' indicating that this only means that anti-tank mines with anti- handling devices are not AP mines. However this is not binding on other States, some of which did not accept this interpretation."

Article 4: Restrictions on Use

Using non-detectable anti-personnel landmines is now illegal. However, States Parties can take up to nine years after the treaty has entered into force to obey the new rule. Sold as a great step forward, it will have a substantial impact only if demining operations in affected communities receive the massive support they need to make lands safe.

Article 5: Restrictions on Non-Remotely Delivered APMs

Clause 2. Such mines do not have to self-destruct and self- deactivate if they're used in marked or fenced areas monitored by military personnel. Roundly criticised for being disconnected from battlefield reality, this is the clause that legalises mining of borders and Demilitarised Zones (DMZs) with long-lived mines.

Clause 6. Mines "which propel fragments in a horizontal arc of less than 90 degrees and which are placed on or above the ground" survived the Protocol revisions, with some restrictions. This clause refers to Claymores, which can be used with or without a tripwire. With a tripwire, they're considered to be a mine. Without a tripwire, they're detonated remotely by the operator. According to the US military, when Claymores are used without the tripwire they're not indiscriminate, not really mines - and so, not regulated by Protocol II.

Article 6: Restrictions on Remotely-Delivered Mines

Clause 2. Remotely-delivered anti-personnel mines must be both self-destructing and self-deactivating. Remotely-delivered anti- tank mines must have a similar mechanism only "to the extent feasible." Again, States have nine years to introduce the new restrictions.

This is one of the most controversial Articles of the new agreement. Up close, it's hard to assess if it contributes to humanitarian progress, bearing in mind that banning remotely- delivered APMs was not on the agenda this time. An important question is whether, and which, countries were planning to use long-lived remotely-delivered mines before the review process began.

Remotely-delivered Russian Butterfly (PM1) mines were used intensively in Afghanistan. Their self-destructing mechanism is notoriously unreliable. They are again outlawed by this Protocol.

Article 7: Prohibitions on the Use of Booby-Traps and Other Devices

This means: no more exploding toys; no exploding animal carcasses; and respect for medical and civilian facilities, historic monuments, and religious and cultural features.

Article 8: Transfers

Clause 1 (a). No prohibited mines can be transferred at all, even if the State that wants to transfer them is using them at home. The nine-year transition period doesn't apply to this rule on transfers: it's in effect now.

Clause 2. However, one gap worth mentioning reads "...subparagraph 1(a) of this Article shall apply to such mines." The 'shall' implies a legal obligation not to transfer illegal mines, according to one of the senior negotiators. But the revised Protocol doesn't become legally binding until it enters into force, a process that's now expected to take a little over one year. A political fix for this legal obstacle appears to have been included at the end of this Article: "All High Contracting Parties, pending entry into force of this Protocol, will refrain from any actions which would be inconsistent with subparagraph 1(a) of this Article."

Transfers of other mines can be made only between States bound by the Protocol "unless the recipient State agrees to apply this Protocol." Mines can't be transferred to non-State entities, like paramilitary armed groups.

Unfortunately, transfers are not monitored by any formal system except those few export controls outside the Protocol that have been put in place unilaterally by some States. No restrictions on the transfer of landmine components appears in the Protocol.

Two days before the review conference's deadline, Pakistan threatened to break consensus if it did not get wording that would, in effect, allow transfers of anti-personnel landmines to non-State entities. This kept the review conference swaying on a high-wire until its last hours. The Pakistani proposal was stared down and a face-saving reassertion of "the Purposes and Principles contained in the Charter of the United Nations" was included in the Final Declaration at the end of the review conference.

Article 9: Recording

Minefields should be recorded; this data should be shared when fighting stops.

Article 10: Removal of Minefields

Also known as 'The Responsibility Clause': he who lays the mine bears responsibility for clearing it. If the mined territory falls under another's control, cooperation on mine-removal after the conflict ends, for example, is stressed. The responsibility clause has, of course, tremendous implications: in economic terms alone, demining costs ten to one hundred times more than laying a mine.

Article 11: Technical Cooperation

The focus here is on demining and destroying or modifying mine stockpiles to conform with new standards, but one colleague asks: "what weapons technology can be transferred to countries that want to manufacture mines meeting the new requirements?"

Article 12: Protection from the Effects of Minefields

Protection against mines for a range of international humanitarian workers and UN factfinders rests on the shoulders of the (military) commander who controls the area in question.

Article 13: Consultations

The States shall meet annually, but are not obliged to report on any one of a number of items. The wording that describes States' obligations to report was watered down from a German proposal which would have obliged all the High Contracting Parties to report on a series of sensitive topics relating to how the revised Protocol is put into practice.

While no formal verification regime came out of the negotiations, some senior delegates say the annual meeting could evolve over the next years into a more rigorous monitoring process.

A second review conference shall take place in five years. It's been suggested that at that time States Parties vote on a clear ban resolution: yes or no.

Article 14: Compliance

Compliance is required, but based on goodwill and promises. However -

Clause 2. People in an armed conflict who violate the Protocol and who "wilfully kill or cause serious injury to civilians" commit a crime, and must be brought to justice. States are required to write the domestic laws that will allow them to try someone for these offences.

Technical Annex

Controversial in and of itself, the technical annex describes what kinds of anti-personnel landmines are legal in detailed technical terms.

The transition period of nine years added in the annex was carved out of extreme positions held in particular by Russia and China - asking initially for 15 and 20 years respectively - and several countries that wanted no transition period at all.

The Russian delegation said its biggest problem with the transition is financial, not technological. When asked how much it would cost, the reply was "hundreds of millions of dollars."

Drafting the technical annex consumed the formal negotiations for several weeks. Some observers criticised the States Parties for not having done their homework in the preparatory meetings leading up to the formal talks. The feeling in Vienna was that some countries had sent the wrong mix of people earlier - professional diplomats working without the appropriate technical experts on their delegations.

Appendix B: Selected statements and reaction

Closing statement by Review Conference President Ambassador Johan Molander of Sweden, 3 May 1996

"We should look at our achievements - but also the shortcomings - in a proper perspective. This negotiation may seem to have been about weapons and legal procedures. Surely this is part of the picture. But at a more fundamental level this has been a negotiation about human values - about innocent women and children falling prey to indiscriminate warfare. The true test of our success will be whether we will contribute to limiting this moral and humanitarian affront. In adhering to and complying with the new rules we can do just that.

I stress the word 'contribute'. ...

I remain, personally, convinced that the only viable long-term solution to the landmine disaster would be a comprehensive international ban on all anti-personnel landmines. I am, personally, encouraged by the growing support for this goal. But I have no illusions that it is a goal which can be achieved rapidly. Indeed, if I ever had any such illusions they have been removed by two years of chairing this negotiation.

It is inevitable that many of us feel that not enough was achieved. The amended Protocol reflects the consensus of all States Parties: the growing number of States Parties favouring an international ban, but also the probable majority of States which are of a different opinion. From all these different starting points, States have in good faith come together to elaborate a new Protocol. Its force will be its universal application.

It represents - in my view - substantial progress as compared to the old Protocol. ...

Decisions have been taken to hold annual Conferences of States Parties to deal with implementation and other key issues, as well as to provide for regular Review Conferences. I have no doubt that these Conferences will also serve as focus of attention for public opinion on landmines worldwide. ...

Let me also recall that we have demonstrated the dynamic nature of the Convention by adding a new Protocol IV on Blinding Laser Weapons. The Protocol banned the use of laser weapons designed to cause permanent blindness - at the very moment when such weapons were about to be deployed.

Two major tasks lie ahead of us: we must ensure universality and we must ensure compliance.

At the opening of this Review Conference, the number of States Parties had gone from 40 two years earlier up to 53. It now stands at 57. Although the number is growing, it is still insufficient and large parts of the world are heavily under-represented, in particular the African continent.

With a strengthened and more meaningful Land Mines Protocol there is a compelling case to urge all States now to accede. I would also hope that all Parties to the present Protocol II take urgent action to be bound by the new instrument."

Statement by India, 3 May

"...we believe that the use of anti-personnel landmines should only be permitted for long term defence of borders, perimeters and peripheries of States. We regret that these proposals could not find consensus and we have had to be content with strict limitations on the use of landmines, booby traps and other devices. For its part, the Government of India has never used, and remains committed not to use landmines in armed conflicts not of an international character."

Statement by Pakistan, 3 May

"Each country participating in the negotiations for the amended protocol was expected to make concessions in order to achieve consensus. Pakistan has contributed in full measure to this endeavour. I have been instructed by my Government to announce that Pakistan has decided to freeze an entire programme of our production of a category of remotely delivered mines which in our assessment will not be able to conform to the technical requirements of the Protocol. Instructions have also been issued to cease production of non-detectable mines. We will achieve the required standards of the Technical Annex regarding detectability much earlier than the permitted deferral period."

Jo-Anne Velin is a freelance journalist based in Geneva.

CTB Negotiations - Geneva Update No. 28

By Rebecca Johnson, Disarmament Intelligence Review

Latest developments

1 June 1996: Ramaker introduces his Chair's draft treaty

On 28 May, exactly one month before the end of the second part of the CD's 1996 session, Ambassador Jaap Ramaker of The Netherlands presented his draft text for a comprehensive nuclear test ban treaty (CTBT). Ramaker, Chair of the Nuclear Test Ban Committee, emphasised that his completed text was not the final word, but intended 'to accelerate the pace of the negotiations that have been going on since 1994, and offer the negotiating countries the opportunity to reach final agreement on a CTBT before 28 June.' This is the target date set by the unopposed United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) resolution (50/65) in December 1995.

By contrast with his working paper delivered at the end of March, the Chair's draft text (CD/NTB/WP.330) contains no brackets or gaps. In choosing among different States' proposals, Ramaker has attempted to reflect as far as possible the options able to command the widest support. Inevitably this has left a number of delegations disappointed. To reassure States with strongly held positions, Ramaker stresses that his draft is to facilitate 'the last and final stage of negotiations', and has not been tabled with a 'take it or leave it attitude'. With similar caution, the NTB Committee is likely to avoid taking a formal decision to accept Ramaker's text rather than the rolling text with its disputed alternatives contained in more than 1200 brackets as the basis for continued negotiations. Nevertheless, the draft treaty will be studied carefully in capitals and is expected to become the main focus of the final deals and agreements in the coming weeks.

India, Pakistan, Russia and China protested vigorously when Ramaker announced on 22 May that he would shortly be tabling a draft treaty from the Chair. Munir Akram, Ambassador of Pakistan, warned that a 'Treaty which descends from heaven or elsewhere may arrest rather than accelerate our negotiations and the fulfilment of our deadline.' However, with most other States of the view that Ramaker could not have waited much longer if he wanted to conclude by 28 June, no-one called the draft 'premature' when it was presented.

While there were mutterings that it overly represented the 'Western perspective', a number of Western countries, notably the United States and UK, complained that the verification provisions leant too far towards the positions of G-21 group of non-aligned States. India raised particular objections that none of its positions had been incorporated, while other non-aligned countries pointed to provisions which they felt could provide some leverage to keep the nuclear-weapon States up to their obligations. As it is being translated into the six United Nations languages and studied carefully in capitals, this Update can only provide an initial view of the reception accorded to the Chair's draft.


As widely expected, the NTB Chair adopted the general scope formulated by Australia, with a zero yield understanding. No provision for so-called peaceful nuclear explosions (PNEs) has been made in the treaty. The scope is bolstered by paragraphs in the preamble referring to the intended constraint on the development and qualitative improvement of nuclear weapons and the ending of the development of advanced new types of nuclear weapons, a relationship to which Ramaker drew attention in his speech to the 30 May plenary. Whether the preamble is strong enough to satisfy those countries which had pushed for more overt restrictions on vertical proliferation and links with a timetable for nuclear disarmament remains to be seen, but the initial response to the preambular compromises has not been as negative as anticipated.

The CTBT Organization (CTBTO) will be located in Vienna, and will comprise a Conference of States Parties, Executive Council and Technical Secretariat, headed by a Director-General. It will be independent, but is expected to make use of expertise and facilities shared with the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA). Ramaker opted for a 45-member Executive Council, with seats elected and designated from six geographical regions, ensuring 'continuous' membership for those with a high stake in terms of nuclear capability and funding of the Organization. Alphabetical rotation of at least one seat per region will ensure that no State is excluded. Though the structure is likely to be accepted, some of the regions and countries, notably in Africa and Western Europe, are pushing for more seats.

The International Monitoring System (IMS) comprises four basic technologies - seismic, hydroacoustic, infrasound and radionuclide monitoring. The numbers and locations of stations have been agreed, and the problem raised by Russia regarding the test sites has been resolved. Ramaker has included monitoring for noble gases which are released during a fission explosion, while leaving electromagnetic pulse (EMP) and satellite monitoring outside the IMS. The treaty contains the possibility of incorporating them at a later date. China has so far refused to accept this arrangement, arguing that either noble gas monitoring should be omitted or that EMP sensors and satellites should be included.

Ramaker has tried hard to find a middle way between the strongly held US position that in the event of suspicion, access should be quick and easy, which is backed by most Western States, and the strict controls demanded by China and Pakistan, supported in principle by many G-21 States. Ramaker accepted the Western view that on-site inspections should be able to be triggered by any kind of information, but provided some conditions so that national technical means (NTM) would not be utilised 'in an unqualified manner'. However, he repudiated the US argument that an inspection should proceed automatically unless the Executive Council deliberately votes against, instead requiring the positive vote of a simple majority of the Council. The US is reportedly unhappy about the restrictions, while China, Pakistan, India and Israel continue to demand that a two-thirds vote of the Executive Council should be required. Other aspects of the on-site regime, including managed access and overflights may also require some finessing.

On an issue as closely bound up with national security as this, it is unsurprising that the Chair's text has failed to satisfy all the main protagonists. However the majority of States have responded positively to the 'genuine compromises' in the section on inspections, arguing that the envisaged time-lines would permit timely access and collection of evidence and that the US should have more confidence in its ability to persuade the members of the Executive Council to investigate a genuine anomaly, given the informational resources at its disposal.

Finally, the Chair's text sought to resolve one of the most highly charged political issues by adopting a last minute British suggestion on entry into force which would make full implementation of the treaty subject to ratification by 37 States which hosted either a primary seismic station or a radionuclide laboratory as part of the IMS. This formula would provide pressure for the accession of the eight States capable of conducting a nuclear test, while also giving them the power to prevent the treaty coming into effect. However, in view of the impasse over entry into force, Ramaker had to test the waters, and see if it does 'indicate the way forward', as he hopes.

Determining appropriate entry into force conditions has become critical as delegations consider the options which might be taken by new governments in India and Israel. As more States discuss the possibility of India 'walking out' of the negotiations, the implications are two-fold: there is a reduced willingness to negotiate on India's positions because a growing number of delegations doubt whether it would have much effect; on the other hand, there is concern that a CTBT that structures its implementation on India's political decision whether or not to join will not be taken seriously. The Indian delegation continues to insist that it is committed to an effective CTBT, by which it means one that binds its States Parties to further measures on nuclear disarmament. Pakistan has clearly and publicly stated that it will not accede to the CTBT without India. Meanwhile, there is a vacuum of decision-making in New Delhi at the moment, and no-one is quite clear which way the new Prime Minister, H D Deve Gowda, will move his coalition government on these issues.

Similarly the Arab States are nervous about Israel's direction following the election of Binyamin Netanyahu and the Likud Party. Some, such as Egypt, are talking of making their accession to the treaty conditional on Israel's, either in the entry into force text or in regional arrangements.

By contrast, there is a greater sense of confidence that Beijing has committed itself to the CTBT and will sign when it has completed this year's test programme. Negotiations among the P-5, which recently solved Russia's problems over the test sites and radionuclide monitoring, have been trying to broker deals with China over scope, PNEs, on-site inspections including NTM, and noble gas, EMP and satellite monitoring. While China appears to have accepted the majority decision that the treaty's scope will prohibit PNEs, it is still pushing for some provision in review of the treaty. This is opposed by the non-nuclear-weapon States, who nevertheless fear that the P-5 might deliver this provision to China as part of a P-5 package, presenting them with a fait accompli.

As the negotiations enter their final stages, much is indicated but nothing is set. To allow focused negotiations on the remaining few clusters of 'treaty-breaking' issues, Ramaker has appointed 'moderators' with a less formal brief than the former friends of the Chair. These include: Antonio de Icaza of Mexico on entry into force; Mounir Zahran of Egypt on preamble and review; Mark Moher of Canada on on-site inspections; Richard Starr of Australia on the IMS; and Nacer Benjelloun-Touimi of Morocco on the CTBTO. Yukiya Amano has been retained to solve remaining difficulties on funding, while Wolfgang Hoffmann of Germany has been given charge of the preparatory commission. Stephen Ledogar of the United States has been appointed friend of the Chair to negotiate with Vienna over the terms and conditions under which Austria will host the CTBTO.

With just three weeks before the June target date, and only nine working weeks before the CD closes in September, the fate of the treaty now hangs in the balance. If the main structure of Ramaker's draft text is accepted in capitals, as looks increasingly likely, the negotiations should be able to find 'bearable' compromises on the remaining points of contention. While there are rumours that Ramaker would bring an updated draft out before the end of June, he should beware of the 'Landmines Syndrome', where the Conference Chair produced so many revised drafts that each carried less authority than the previous. Ramaker intended his CTBT draft text to highlight the choices but allow room for change if good alternatives can be agreed.

The next Chair's text should be the finalised treaty.

Statements to the CD Plenary

14 May Plenary

The 734th plenary of the CD, chaired by Ambassador Ejoh Abuah of Nigeria, heard from the Foreign Minister of Brazil, the UK Minister of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, Russia, Egypt and Croatia.

Ambassador Berdennikov took the opportunity to announce that Russia had agreed to the Australian scope formulation, without any thresholds, confirming President Yeltsin's decision on 19 April to accept this general scope and the zero yield understanding backed by the US, UK and France (contained in CD/1395). He presented the short statement on the CTBT on behalf of the Moscow G-8 summit on nuclear safety, stressing that the CTBT must prohibit any nuclear weapon test explosion or any other nuclear explosion, and affirming the importance of the decision on principles and objectives for nuclear non-proliferation and nuclear disarmament adopted on 11 May, 1995 at the Nuclear Non Proliferation Treaty (NPT) Conference. However, 'pending 'the complete elimination of nuclear weapons, which remains our ultimate goal', Russia would 'have to conduct activities to maintain [its] nuclear stockpile, including at [the] test site ...'

In terms remarkably similar to those uttered by President Clinton when he announced the US decision on zero yield and 'stockpile stewardship' on 11 August, 1995, Berdennikov listed: a federal programme to ensure the safety and reliability of the arsenal without conducting nuclear explosions; support for research centres and maintenance of design teams, scientific and technological expertise; maintenance of a 'basic capability' in case the CTBT should collapse in the future; improvement of monitoring capabilities; and further improvement of intelligence resources to monitor nuclear proliferation and capabilities around the world. He stressed that such activities would 'not run counter to the ban' envisaged in the CTBT.

Russia also emulated the US, UK and France by adopting the same interpretation relating stockpile safety to 'supreme interests' in the treaty's provisions on withdrawal: 'Russia, if its supreme interests are threatened, will make use of its right to withdraw from the treaty in order to conduct all necessary tests which may be called for if there is no other possible means of confirming a high level of confidence in the safety or reliability of any of the key types of Russian nuclear weapons.'

The Minister of External Relations of Brazil, Luiz Felipe Lampreia, gave a general statement, affirming that the international community should become more involved in disarmament and should redirect resources from weapons production to 'social and economic advancement in developing countries such as my own.' He welcomed the Pelindaba and Bangkok nuclear free zone treaties and urged the two main possessors of chemical weapons (Russia and the United States) to ratify the Chemical Weapons Convention (CWC). Although commending recent initiatives by some of the nuclear-weapon States, including the START I and II processes, Lampreia urged the CD to launch discussions on a fissile materials ban and to undertake multilateral nuclear disarmament negotiations. He said that a CTBT was to be regarded not as an end in itself, but as a significant first step, and stressed the need for provisions 'emphasising the vertical proliferation constraint it imposes' and its context, stressing 'the need for the complete elimination of nuclear weapons at the earliest possible time and according to a phased programme under a multilaterally agreed process of nuclear disarmament.'

In a reference aimed at China, Lampreia called for acceptance of the 'most widely supported article' on scope and the dropping of exceptions. Similarly, he criticised the US positions on some aspects of verification, specifically division of costs, NTM and the analysis of information from the IDC.

UK Minister of State at the Foreign Office, David Davis MP, announced his country's ratification of the CWC on 13 May and urged others to do likewise, so that the Convention could enter into force. The main thrust of his statement was to explain 'why Britain is such a firm supporter of a comprehensive test ban treaty, given that - as is well known - we firmly believe that nuclear deterrence has made a major contribution to security in Europe over the past 50 years.'

Twice characterising a test ban as a 'sacrifice' (though 'a price worth paying'), Davis said that it would 'limit the capability of all the nuclear-weapon States to develop new nuclear weapons and to modernise their existing stocks.' Underlining the need for the CTBT to be 'truly comprehensive...effectively verifiable...[and] universal', Davis repudiated attempts to link it with nuclear disarmament: 'the continuing uncertainties which characterise our security mean that we cannot accept a commitment to a deadline for the elimination of nuclear weapons.' Clearly referring to the G-21 call for an ad hoc committee on nuclear disarmament, he rejected attempts to address this in the CD and called 'bizarre' the suggestion 'that the declared nuclear powers should pay for the privilege of accepting constraints on our capabilities.'

Addressing the NTM argument, he said that the UK considered that 'parties should be able to bring all relevant information to bear in the verification process. No artificial distinctions should be drawn, and no source of data be excluded.' Responding to criticisms of the UK's 'five plus three' formula for entry into force being made conditional on accession by (at least) the five nuclear-weapon States and three threshold countries, Davis said that the UK 'do not hold this position so firmly because we have some absurd secret desire to see the treaty collapse so that we can test again...we can have no interest in seeing the negotiations fail - just the opposite.' However, 'it is vital that the international community should not miss the opportunity to make a real contribution to non-proliferation and global stability by the establishment of a universal treaty.' The UK also called for a 'balanced' CD agenda 'covering both conventional armaments and weapons of mass destruction.'

Ambassador Mounir Zahran of Egypt introduced the Cairo Declaration (CD/1390), adopted on the occasion of the signing of the African Nuclear Weapon Free Zone Treaty on 11 April 1996. He welcomed that 45 African States signed the Pelindaba Treaty and four nuclear- weapon States and Spain signed the relevant protocols, viewing this as 'overwhelming success'.

Reviewing the history of attempts to denuclearise Africa, Zahran noted that 'all disarmament measures help to create the conditions needed for the promotion of development'. The Treaty would prevent testing and nuclear dumping, so that the African environment would be protected and safeguarded, giving confidence 'that the African continent will no longer be viewed as a cheap dumping ground for nuclear waste.' The Pelindaba protocols provided comprehensive security assurances against the use or threat of use of nuclear weapons, which 'go far beyond the unilateral or multilateral declarations made by the nuclear-weapon States and [UN] Security Council resolutions 255 and 984' , which would thus constitute an 'incentive to continue work' to achieve universal and unambiguous security assurances.

Zahran reiterated the need for the 'total elimination of all nuclear weapons within a well-defined and legally binding time- frame' and for a CD committee on nuclear disarmament to begin work as soon as negotiations on a CTBT were concluded. Finally he called on Israel to adhere to the NPT and to cooperate on establishing a zone free of weapons of mass destruction in the Middle East.

Bernard Goonetilleke, Ambassador of Sri Lanka, urged the CD to move 'at a much faster pace' if it is to reach the desired goal by 28 June.

Addressing the CD for the first time, Ambassador Neven Madey said Croatia's commitment to disarmament was 'reinforced by our own grave experience of the importance of a credible force and armaments to fight against aggression and, on the other hand, the human tragedy, suffering and destruction that armaments and the imposed war have caused to our country and its population', citing 11,000 killed, 38,000 wounded and 2,800 still missing. After expressing support for the CWC, Biological Weapons Convention and for a 'total moratorium on the use, production, stockpiling, import and export of anti-personnel landmines, booby-traps and remotely delivered anti-personnel mines', Madey addressed the CTBT negotiations. Croatia opposed the concept of PNEs, saying that they would 'considerably weaken the credibility of the treaty and would raise a great number of ambiguities'. The remainder of the speech was devoted to discussion of the General Framework Agreement negotiated at Dayton, and Croatia's view that there were three legitimate successor States for Yugoslavia's vacant seat in the CD, and that it should not automatically go to the 'Federal Republic of Yugoslavia (Serbia and Montenegro)'.

The Russian Federation's belated commitment to the zero yield and Australian scope formulation was widely welcomed. A few States expressed disappointment that Russia had duplicated the US approach on nuclear stockpile 'stewardship' or maintenance activities and supreme national interests, but said that in the circumstances they were not surprised. The UK ratification of the CWC and Egypt's presentation of the Cairo declaration were received very positively, but the overall tenor of the UK statement, which emphasised the security function of nuclear deterrence and dismissed attempts to negotiate nuclear disarmament as 'bizarre', was regarded as less helpful at this stage of negotiations.

23 May Plenary

The 735th plenary of the CD, chaired by Nigeria, was addressed by Pakistan, Brazil on behalf of the G-21 Group of Non-Aligned States, and Italy on behalf of the European Union (EU). Before handing over the Presidency of the CD, Abuah reported that there was no consensus yet on the proposal of the G-21 for an ad hoc committee on nuclear disarmament. However, he said the CD was 'on the threshold of a breakthrough' to resolve the impasse on its expansion of membership. Paying tribute to Ramaker, Berdennikov and Zahran, Chairs of the NTB Committee and its working groups, Abuah said that success was within the CD's grasp and should not be thrown away: 'we all need a sound CTBT which should command the support of all CD members and all other members of the international community.'

Munir Akram, Ambassador of Pakistan, said that he had expected that negotiations would have intensified at this stage, but 'our pace has become more sedate, even as our deliberations have been lifted to the level of the ad hoc Committee and beyond into more opaque realms.' Having committed to a CTBT for over 30 years, Pakistan was 'not about to change [its] mind now that the moment of truth is here', but questions remained to be answered. Acknowledging the growing consensus on the Australian scope formulation, Akram criticised the intention to continue 'zero yield or subcritical tests' and condemned the notion of 'safety and reliability' testing altogether. Raising questions about verification and by what technical or political means States could be assured that such subcritical tests would not contribute to qualitative development of nuclear weapons, Akram complained that 'such tests will subvert one of the main attractions of the CTBT to the world's peoples - the realisation of nuclear disarmament through a process of attrition.' To clarify this, Pakistan had suggested a separate section in the preamble spelling out the 'purposes and objectives' of the treaty and a related amendment to the Review article for a periodic review of the purposes and objectives of the CTBT.

While insisting that the 'el cheapo' IMS (echoing an earlier US description) should not be used as an excuse for overly intrusive on-site inspections or the use of NTM, Akram now signalled some flexibility. Reiterating Pakistan's opposition to NTM which 'could be used for harassment and undue interference', and ruling out 'human intelligence or espionage', Akram opened the door to non- IMS data, subject to 'certain stringent criteria'. He affirmed Pakistan's determination that the Executive Council should decide by at least a two-thirds majority to allow an inspection to go ahead. IDC data should be 'accessible to all in a form which does not require further processing.' Emphasising that Pakistan could not accept a 'one sided restraint', and that all eight countries which 'have the capability to conduct nuclear test explosions' should be on board, he said that his delegation had thus adopted 'from a former colonial power, the formula that the treaty should enter into force once it is ratified by 40 States including all the eight [nuclear test capable] States.' However, he also argued that 'since it is primarily these eight States which are likely to be involved in the resolution of 'ambiguous' or 'suspicious' events, it is essential that they should be represented on a continuous basis on the Executive Council.

Ambassador Gilberto Saboia of Brazil asked for the special coordinator on the agenda to take into account the G-21 demand for an ad hoc committee on nuclear disarmament to commence immediately after the conclusion of the CTBT negotiations in 1996.

On behalf of the EU, Ambassador Alessandro Vattani of Italy presented the 22 April EU Council declaration on a CTBT (CD/1396). This statement attached the highest priority to conclusion of a CTBT 'before the end of the spring session' of the CD and endorsed the zero yield option. It underlined the EU view that a CTBT would be a 'concrete step in the full realisation and effective implementation of article VI [of the NPT]' and that it would 'contribute to the prevention of the proliferation of nuclear weapons, to the process of nuclear disarmament and therefore to the enhancement of international peace and security.'

While Pakistan's indication of greater flexibility was welcomed, especially on verification positions the rigidity of which had previously been causing difficulties, there was concern that its desire to ensure veto power for the nuclear and threshold States on entry into force and the Executive Council could make final agreement more difficult, especially given the confusion over India's policy following its elections and hung parliament.

30 May Plenary

The 736th plenary of the CD, chaired by Ambassador Munir Akram of Pakistan, was addressed by the Chair of the Nuclear Test Ban Committee, Australia and Kenya.

Ramaker explained that with little more than four weeks to go, he had decided that tabling a complete text was essential, so that 'delegations can see all outstanding issues, major and minor, in their proper context, in their interrelationship.' He then explained the thinking behind his choices on some of the key issues, particularly the preamble, basic obligations and on-site inspection. These are addressed below in the appropriate sections on the treaty negotiations. Ramaker concluded his statement by pledging to spare no effort to facilitate the final stage of negotiations and expressing confidence that they would succeed, for 'succeed we must!'

Taking the floor on behalf of Australia, Ambassador Richard Starr appeared to be speaking for many when he said that the Chair's text reflected 'the deft touch, hard work and highly professional approach of Ambassador Ramaker and his delegation.' While acknowledging that the text does not necessarily represent the choices Australia would have wished for, Starr supported the Chair's initiative as 'the best, and indeed only, means by which we can see the negotiations being finished successfully.' With this, the CD stands 'poised and equipped to complete these negotiations in the four remaining weeks.'

Although she said that Kenya would be studying the Chair's text, tabled two days earlier, 'very carefully', Ambassador Esther Mshai Tolle expressed concern that 'to date no negotiation of the text has taken place at the NTB ad hoc Committee meetings.' Kenya opposed 'selective testing' and wanted the preamble to reflect the treaty objectives, including 'the promotion of non-proliferation of nuclear weapons in all its aspects, to prevent the qualitative development of nuclear weapons, and thereby promote nuclear disarmament.' The treaty and its preamble should be subjected to 'periodic review' to ensure the realisation of their objectives. She backed Vienna as the location of the CTBT Organisation, but considered that a 'better formula' than that proposed by Ambassador Benjelloun-Touimi could be found to reflect 'regional equitability and avoid marginalisation' in the membership of the Executive Council. She favoured option 3 of the Friend of the Chair working paper on the IDC, providing the greatest degree of analysis and screening for those with more limited national resources.

Stressing the need for the CD to follow its work on a CTBT by establishing a committee to 'commence negotiations on a phased programme of nuclear disarmament for the eventual elimination of nuclear weapons within a specific time frame', Kenya also called on countries - 'particularly those in Africa [which] are being liberalised' - to share their knowledge of civilian nuclear energy 'for peaceful purposes.' Kenya backed the expansion of the CD by admission of the 23 countries in waiting.

Analysis of the Chair's draft text

Negotiations on a CTBT opened in the CD in January 1994, chaired by Miguel Marin Bosch of Mexico, who bequeathed an initial rolling text of 93 pages. Ludwik Dembinski of Poland took over the chair in January 1995, in a year which saw substantial progress on verification but little movement on the central political issues until August, when the US and France dramatically pledged themselves to zero yield. When Jaap Ramaker of the Netherlands took over in January 1996, he inherited a revised rolling text, with more than 1200 brackets around disputed text or options.

In February, Iran and Australia submitted draft or 'model' treaty texts, which were widely welcomed as providing genuine attempts to find middle ground, demonstrating areas of agreement and showing how the mass of brackets could be pared away. While differing in the detail of their solutions, the Iranian and Australian texts were remarkably similar in their conceptual approach to many of the outstanding problems. They thus paved the way for Ramaker to put down a Chair's text. Because of strong opposition to any 'premature' attempt to circumvent the rolling text, expressed by India, Pakistan and China (and milder but significant objections from Russia), Ramaker chose to pull the text together in two stages. At the end of March he therefore tabled an 'Outline of a draft Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty' (CD/NTB/WP.321) to 'assist States...in preparing for the final stage.' This outline consisted of a preamble and 17 articles, but included in brackets considerable sections of the rolling text, including China's proposals on PNEs, peaceful use of nuclear energy, security assurances and the relation to other international agreements.

On 28 May, Ramaker presented a complete 'Draft Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty', consisting of a preamble and 17 articles with no brackets. To this were attached various annexes and protocols covering the treaty's verification.


Ramaker explained that he had opted for the term 'basic obligations' for article I of the draft CTBT, as 'the scope of the treaty...what the treaty intends to prohibit, comprises more than one obligation.' As expected, the Chair's draft reproduces the scope originally proposed by Australia in March 1995:

"1. Each State Party undertakes not to carry out any nuclear weapon test explosion or any other nuclear explosion, and to prohibit and prevent any such nuclear explosion at any place under its jurisdiction or control.

2. Each State Party undertakes, furthermore, to refrain from causing, encouraging, or in any way participating in the carrying out of any nuclear weapon test explosion or any other nuclear explosion."

This formulation had already received the backing of the majority of States, including four of the nuclear weapon States and a significant number of non-aligned countries. China has agreed to the first part of the obligation but, while now speaking of 'flexibility', has not yet formally agreed to prohibit PNEs, as covered by 'any nuclear explosion'. Egypt has caused surprise and dismay by reiterating its support for the proposal put forward by Indonesia in June 1995, that the word 'explosion' should be deleted from the first part so that the treaty would ban all nuclear weapon tests and any nuclear explosion. This is supported by India, which had sought to define the prohibited activity as 'any release of nuclear energy caused by the rapid assembly or compression of fissile or fusion material by chemical explosive or other means.'

However, Indonesia had dropped its proposal in February 1996, and together with other G-21 countries which are opposed to subcritical testing and laboratory activities that could contribute to the perpetuation of nuclear arsenals, seeks to have its concerns reflected in the language of the preamble rather than attempting to define the basic obligations any further. The nuclear-weapon States have made it clear that they regard the zero yield decision as a major concession and will not go further on scope. While not necessarily accepting this limiting of the treaty's context, many States fear that if all nuclear weapon related testing were to be defined in the scope, the verification regime would have to be renegotiated and made considerably more intrusive and expensive.

Peaceful Nuclear Explosions (PNE)

China has long pushed to be able to conduct so-called peaceful nuclear explosions, but Ramaker's text bowed to the will of the overwhelming majority and prohibited PNEs in the basic obligation. In keeping with this decision, he did not include any provision for allowing the Conference of States Parties or any other body to decide on a PNE request in the future, an idea floated in February by the Iranian draft treaty. Sha Zukang, China's Ambassador to the CD, had returned from Beijing at the beginning of the May session and publicly expressed that China 'was prepared to be flexible [on PNEs] providing others also showed flexibility on this issue.' Given the renewed opposition by the majority of States to any provision or mention of PNEs in the treaty text following the brief flirtation of some States with the Iranian attempt to find a 'face saving' formula, it was not surprising that Ramaker chose to omit them. While this has been greeted with relief by many States, China has yet to agree.

There are some concerns among non-nuclear-weapon States that this might be the subject of a deal among the P-5 nuclear-weapon States, who are believed to have been discussing an additional article or paragraph in the review section of the treaty. According to reports, this might specify that if changing circumstances made it possible to conduct nuclear explosions with no military benefit, the issue could be brought up at a future review conference; if it received agreement there, it could then be brought to an amendment conference, as provided in the treaty. (Any amendment would require the consensus of all States Parties.) Although this would appear to have the effect of ruling out PNEs, a number of key States are concerned that any mention in the treaty text could provide a legitimisation for PNE research, introduce a loophole or ambiguity which would benefit the nuclear weapon and threshold States and may undermine the basic obligations of the treaty. There is now a general feeling that China should accept that it has failed to persuade even one other State of the value of PNEs, and that the treaty should unequivocally ban all nuclear explosions. Any reservation on this should be made in an accompanying statement and not in the treaty text.


The preamble sets the context of the treaty and can inform the meaning of the basic obligations. As more States decided to back the general scope prohibition now reflected in Ramaker's draft, they wanted to ensure that those with advanced technology would not be able to carry on business as usual. This view was summed up by India's Ambassador Ghose, who warned that the CTBT should not merely 'drive testing into the laboratories by those who have the resources to do so.' Fearing that a more defined language on basic obligations could cause verification and compliance ambiguities, many States such as Indonesia and Pakistan have pushed instead for stronger language in the preamble.

The Chair's draft preamble consists of ten paragraphs. These reiterate the NTB Committee's mandate for a universal and internationally and effectively verifiable CTBT, to 'contribute as effectively as possible to the process of nuclear disarmament and to the prevention of the proliferation of nuclear weapons in all its aspects, and therefore to the enhancement of international peace and security...' They welcome recent arms reduction measures, underline the importance of their implementation and of further measures towards nuclear disarmament. Utilising language agreed in the decisions on Principles and Objectives at the NPT Conference in May 1995, the preamble stresses the need for 'continued systematic and progressive efforts to reduce nuclear weapons globally, with the ultimate goal of eliminating those weapons, and of general and complete disarmament under strict and effective international control' and regards an end to nuclear explosions as 'a meaningful step in the realisation of a systematic process to achieve nuclear disarmament.' Finally the preamble States that the treaty 'seeks the discontinuance of all nuclear weapon test explosions and all other nuclear explosions for all time.'

The most controversial paragraph reads: 'Convinced that the cessation of all nuclear weapon test explosions and all other nuclear explosions, by constraining the development and qualitative improvement of nuclear weapons and ending the development of advanced new types of nuclear weapons, constitutes an effective measure of nuclear disarmament and non-proliferation in all its aspects...'

This was Ramaker's compromise on an earlier Indian proposal which wanted 'an end to the qualitative improvement and development of nuclear weapon systems' as an objective of the treaty. India was supported by the majority of G-21 countries but opposed by at least three of the nuclear-weapon States (UK, France and the US). With the UK particularly rejecting inclusion of this paragraph as an objective, the Chair sought to identify development and qualitative improvement as consequences of the scope prohibition, leaning heavily on the statement by US Director of the Arms Control and Disarmament Agency (ACDA), John Holum, to the CD in January 1996. Some States, however, fear that the nuclear-weapon States could weasel their way out of an expression of constraint as an effect of the CTBT. Preferring to refer to prevention of development and qualitative improvements as an aspiration of the treaty, they point to the way in which the NPT Principles and Objectives exhortation of 'utmost restraint' on nuclear testing in May 1995 was followed by two Chinese and six French nuclear blasts.

While India, Egypt and others have expressed dissatisfaction with this paragraph, Pakistan continues to push for a separate section on 'purposes and objectives of the Treaty' to be included in the preamble. This would include 'preventing the qualitative development of nuclear weapons; preventing the qualitative development of new kinds of nuclear weapons and systems; contributing to nuclear non-proliferation in all its aspects; promoting nuclear disarmament and the eventual elimination of nuclear weapons within a specific time-frame; and promoting international peace and security.' Other States expressed their disappointment that protection of the environment was not included as an effect or aspiration of the treaty. Some States have also regretted the omission of paragraphs referring to the NPT and calling on all States to undertake not to acquire or develop nuclear weapons, while recognising that such explicit linkage with the NPT was likely to be rejected by India.

Ramaker attempted to find a balance between 'the desirable and the attainable', utilising language agreed among NPT parties in May 1995. Given the intransigence of the nuclear-weapon States on accepting the concept of a time-table for nuclear disarmament, and the insistence by the non-aligned that the preamble should more clearly reflect their aspirations in entering into the CTBT, it is unlikely that further discussions on the preamble and review, now being conducted under the auspices of Ambassador Zahran, will be able to shift the balance significantly in one or other direction. Some modification and strengthening of concepts is still possible. Pakistan and Egypt are expected to continue to push hard, but India's political confusions have weakened its leverage and the preamble is unlikely to assume a treaty-breaking role.

The CTBT Organization (CTBTO)

As expected, the Chair's draft treaty establishes a Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty Organization (CTBTO) in Vienna. This will comprise a Conference of States Parties, expected to meet annually, an Executive Council and a Technical Secretariat, headed by a Director-General. The CTBTO will be an independent body, but can 'seek to utilise expertise and facilities, as appropriate, and to maximise cost efficiencies, through cooperative arrangements with other international organisations such as the International Atomic Energy Agency.' There are few surprises, but some States are still unhappy with the composition of the Council, as determined through consultations by the Friend of the Chair, Ambassador Benjelloun- Touimi of Morocco.

Faced with some States wanting 'assured seats' on the Council - the requirements of manageable size competing with those of regional and political balance - and with strong advocates of the IAEA or UN regional models clashing with equally strong rejecters, Benjelloun-Touimi proposed an Executive Council of 45 members. He grouped States Parties among six regions and allocated seats accordingly: 9 to Africa, 6 to Eastern Europe, 8 to Latin America, 6 to the Middle East and South Asia, 9 to North America and Western Europe, and 7 to South-East Asia, the Pacific and the Far East. To meet the needs of States which regard themselves as having a particular stake in the implementation of the treaty, as well as ensuring that no State Party is excluded from the Executive Council, the draft treaty provides for election of members designated by their region, with at least one third of seats weighted towards those with nuclear capabilities determined by the IAEA, or which underwrite the Organisation in terms of financial or monitoring contributions. However, Ramaker stressed that the designation should not be 'according to' the four criteria, but 'taking them into account.' There is also provision for at least one seat per region to be rotated alphabetically, so that all States Parties can have the opportunity to serve on the Council.

Kenya expressed a feeling among several African States that they should be allocated more seats. However, at the same time, the Western Europeans and those within the Middle-East and South-Asia region point out that they each contain three nuclear or threshold States which will vie for continuous places on the Council. Pakistan voiced concern that having the IAEA determine nuclear capabilities discriminated against those which were not subject to full-scope safeguards. One solution could be to increase the number of seats per region, but many fear that this could make decision-making in the Council unwieldy. Despite these criticisms the majority seem to regard the model as a useful compromise among competing national egos and interests. While it is unlikely that the Benjelloun-Touimi structure will be rejected, battles over whether (and if so, how) to modify it are likely to continue for some time.

The powers and functions of the Executive Council are also causing debate, as the draft text has included responsibility for resolving concerns 'regarding apparently imminent non-compliance' with the treaty and 'abuse of the rights established' by the treaty. Combined with provisions in the section on consultation and clarification, this was intended to supply reassurance to States concerned about preparations, such as Germany and Sweden, as well as non-aligned States which had given up proposals that dealt more widely with nuclear weapon testing. Though the nuclear- weapon States are reportedly unhappy with these provisions, to insist at this point on their deletion would invite a re- examination among some States of the compromises they made towards agreement on scope, and would cast serious doubt on the P-5's intentions with regard to their CTBT obligations.


With the exception of the highly charged question of on-site inspections, Ramaker's verification provisions closely resemble the agreements painstakingly worked out during the previous two years of negotiations. The regime would consist of an international monitoring system (IMS) of four basic technologies, non-mandatory consultation and clarification, on-site inspections, and confidence-building measures. As far as the IMS is concerned, there is agreement on the number and location of stations providing global networks of seismic, radionuclide, infrasound and hydroacoustic monitors.

In view of the strength of opinion in many States that noble gas monitoring would enhance the deterrence and detection capabilities of the system, as the venting of gases such as xenon and argon are indicative of a nuclear explosion and cannot be completely or confidently contained even if a test is carefully concealed, Ramaker has included noble gas monitoring. The draft requires 40 of the 75 stations for measuring radioactive particles in the atmosphere to monitor for the presence of relevant noble gases as well. Most countries support the inclusion of noble gas monitoring, but China maintains that it is 'unconvinced', while India says it is sceptical. Ramaker has omitted electromagnetic pulse (EMP) and satellites, which China wanted, but has included provisions for 'improvement of the verification regime', allowing EMP, satellites or other technology to be incorporated in the IMS subject to the consensus of the Executive Council. In this manner, technologies can be either added or deleted from the IMS without requiring the full process of an Amendment Conference. It would also be possible, under separately established 'cooperative arrangements' for any State Party to make available supplementary data from national monitoring stations that are not formally part of the IMS, although it appears that this only applies to the IMS technologies.

By discussions solely among the P-5, agreement was reached on Russia's demand for 'identical transparency' at the test sites. The location of one seismic station has been changed from California to Nevada, closer to the test site, and the station earmarked for Kazakstan has been moved closer to the border with China and up-dated to a more sophisticated array. This compromise appears to have satisfied Russia without overly offending China or the United States, and has been accepted by the rest and incorporated in Ramaker's draft. Similarly Russia has abandoned its proposal for specially equipped aircraft to monitor radionuclides in the atmosphere and now agrees to the network of monitors outlined in the draft treaty.

The International Data Centre (IDC), attached to the Technical Secretariat, would be responsible for processing the mass of raw data from the IMS stations and sending it to States Parties in a variety of forms. The controversy over how much the IDC should analyse the data as part of its regular bulletin to States Parties was decided by Ramaker in favour of 'an enhanced option 2' of the Friend of the Chair's working paper (CD/NTB/WP.312). Therefore the IDC would screen data in accordance with internationally standardised criteria established by the CTBTO, filter it according to nationally requested criteria, and provide some additional technical assistance to States Parties. This seems now to have been accepted.

On IMS funding, Ramaker has decided that unless the responsible State meets the costs itself, the CTBTO would pay for establishing new facilities identified as necessary for the primary networks, upgrading existing primary or auxiliary facilities to the international standards, operating and maintaining primary IMS facilities, transmitting IMS data, both processed and raw, analysing samples and authenticating data from auxiliary stations. There is presently a lack of overall agreement on Ramaker's solution to the controversy over verification financing. The United States had sought a complicated system of 'contribution credits' to enable a State to offset its financial liabilities by payment in kind on monitoring facilities. The Chair's text allows a State Party to offset its costs on establishing and operating its stations against its assessed financial contribution through a 'credit' to the CTBTO of up to half its annual financial liability. This may be accepted, although some countries, including Germany and Mexico, oppose the use of credits for anything but the establishment and upgrading of IMS stations. Overall, the costs of the CTBTO will be met by all States Parties in accordance with the UN scale of assessments adjusted to take account of the difference in membership of the two organisations.

Confidence-building measures relate to notification of chemical explosions and calibration of the IMS stations, but do not encompass any transparency or measures relating to the existing test sites, as some G-21 countries had hoped.

Consultation and clarification, identified by Ramaker as an essential component of the verification regime, has not been made mandatory, as demanded by Israel, India, China and others. States have the right (but not the obligation) to seek clarification and attempt to resolve, either among themselves or through the CTBTO 'any matter which may cause concern about possible non-compliance with this treaty.' A State Party may request assistance from the CTBTO and be provided with information from the Technical Secretariat. The party to whom the request is directed is obliged to provide clarification within 24 hours, and can be pursued for additional explanations if the initial information is deemed inadequate. Consultation and clarification should also be sought immediately if any request for an on-site inspection is received. Although time-lines are provided so that results of this exchange of information can inform the OSI decision process, conclusion of the clarification process is not obligatory.

On-Site Inspections (OSI)

Given the myriad options and complications in the rolling text on inspections, Ramaker's attempt to resolve the section on inspections has been significantly welcomed, but is by no means agreed. This is hardly surprising, since this issue goes to the heart of some States' concerns about security and national sovereignty, while others have strong views on the necessity for a robust inspection regime, with a presumption of access if a violation is suspected. In his statement to the CD plenary, Ramaker said that he had tried 'to balance the concern that the regime should contribute effectively to the verifiability - and therefore the credibility - of the treaty on the one hand and concerns that the inspection regime should not jeopardise legitimate security concerns of States Parties or even be abused or used in a frivolous manner on the other.'

In summary, with some nuanced variations, China, Pakistan, Israel and India wanted a mandatory consultation and clarification process and no OSI without a qualified majority of the Executive Council ('green light' decision). In their view inspection requests should be based only on IMS data. In recent weeks those which had opposed any incorporation of national technical means in the verification regime indicated that they would accept some utilisation of NTM, subject to strict controls and restrictions, and those who had pressed for a green light decision by three- fourths of the Executive Council were prepared to accept a two- thirds majority instead. On the other side, the United States, backed by the UK and France, wanted to be able to use any kind of relevant information to back up an OSI request, which should go ahead automatically unless stopped by a decision of the Executive Council (red light). Russia considered that NTM but not human intelligence and espionage should be allowed, and favoured a green light decision.

Treading a line between such polarised positions was never going to be easy. Ramaker decided that NTM should be 'acceptable in principle, but not in an unqualified manner.' His draft text allows any kind of information, including national technical means, but 'consistent with generally recognised principles of international law', understood to exclude espionage. However, before the inspection can go ahead, the Executive Council must decide by a 'majority of all members' (green light). The United States and others argue that with a 45-member Council, as envisaged, this would require 23 positive votes, since all absentees or abstentions would be counted as votes against. They regard this as too stringent a condition, which could be abused or manipulated by an accused State. On the other side, however, Pakistan and China do not accept a simple majority, arguing that they have already dropped their requirement from three-fourths. They are primarily concerned to prevent countries using inspections to harass, abuse or spy on them. Both sides seem convinced that the other would be able to martial more supporters more easily to their cause. A two-thirds majority of States present and voting might be a realistic compromise, with absentees and abstentions treated together as neither positive nor negative, instead of swelling the numbers of those voting against.

Although he has not recommended phases, as proposed by the United States, Ramaker has introduced the provision that once an inspection is initiated, it can only be halted by a majority decision of the Council, or by recommendation of the inspection team (unless countermanded by the Council). However, if drilling is to be conducted, a further decision of the Council must be sought (green light). Those concerned about time-critical evidence have been reassured by a timeline that requires that an inspection should begin within one week of an OSI request being made. Intrusion and effectiveness have been balanced with overflight provisions and managed access. The envisaged time-frame for an inspection is 70 days, with the possibility of extending by up to 60 days, subject to majority decision of the Executive Council.

Various provisions cover the conduct of inspections, to diminish the opportunity for abuse while ensuring that the inspection team is not prevented from carrying out its mandate by undue delays and impediments thrown up by an inspected State. States are allowed to protect sensitive facilities and information unrelated to compliance with the treaty. The inspection should move from less intrusive to more intrusive procedures. Inspectors and access points have to be identified to the CTBTO on a States' accession to the treaty (and updated as appropriate), and so would not be appointed in relation to a particular request. Consideration has been given to inspections where the site under one State's jurisdiction or control is on the territory of another State (as with US bases in Europe or Japan). During an inspection, personnel are granted privileges and immunities consistent with diplomatic status, and up to three observers from the requesting part(ies) may accompany the team.

The draft treaty also includes penalties if the Executive Council deems a request to have been 'frivolous or abusive'. This may be financial (requiring the requesting State Party to bear the costs incurred) or any of the measures in Article V, which covers the redressing of a situation, compliance and sanctions. Accordingly, failure to comply with treaty obligations or abuse of the treaty's provisions can result in penalties ranging from suspension of membership rights, collective measures in conformity with international law, and the taking of cases of 'particular gravity' to the United Nations General Assembly and Security Council.

Entry into Force (EIF)

The Chair's draft opted for the latest entry into force option from the UK, intended to ensure that the five nuclear-weapon States and three threshold States of India, Israel and Pakistan would have to accede before the treaty came into effect. An earlier formula that identified these eight directly was opposed by a number of key States who complained either that this conferred special status or that it singled out the eight. The operative paragraph in Ramaker's text on entry into force now reads: 'The treaty shall enter into force 180 days after the date of deposit of the instruments of ratification by all States listed in Tables 1-A and 2-B of Annex 1 to the Protocol, but in no case earlier than two years after its opening for signature.'

Table 1-A contains the 34 countries which host the 50 primary seismic stations in the IMS. Table 2-B lists 14 radionuclide laboratories. Combined, they comprise the following 37 countries: Argentina, Australia, Austria, Bolivia, Brazil, Canada, Central African Republic, China, Colombia, Cote d'Ivoire, Egypt, Finland, France, Germany, India, Iran, Israel, Japan, Kazakstan, Kenya, Mongolia, Niger, Norway, Pakistan, Paraguay, Republic of Korea, Russian Federation, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, Spain, Thailand, Tunisia, Turkey, Turkmenistan, Ukraine, United Kingdom, United States of America.

Those who advocated the IAEA list of 68 States because it included the eight nuclear weapon capable States seem to be comfortable with this formula, although they point out that it contains some odd countries. Those who bitterly opposed the formula that encompassed just the eight which were not subject to IAEA full scope safeguards are less happy, but concede that this formula does not endow them with such special privileges. However, it does give any individual State on the list the power to prevent the treaty from entering into force. With India and Israel undergoing post-election upheavals, and with both holding strong positions (on nuclear disarmament and on-site inspections respectively) that have not been fully incorporated in the draft text, handing them such a power could cripple the treaty's credibility before it is even signed. Furthermore, as recently as 4 June, India reiterated its position that the treaty cannot enter into force without a time-table for nuclear disarmament accepted by all States Parties.

The CD is polarised on this issue. Among the P-5, Russia, the UK and China are most vehemently in favour of making accession by the eight a condition of entry into force. The US strongly opposes this, leaving France leaning towards the UK position but more flexible. Pakistan strongly supports the entry into force provision in the Chair's text, while Japan, Australia, India, Canada (and even the Netherlands, nationally) are unhappy. Some continue to press for a simple numerical solution, relying on political pressure to bring in the necessary States. Others argue that this is insufficient, since political pressure did not force India, Pakistan and Israel to join the NPT. Some advocate agreements whereby certain States attach to their own entry into force requirements that they will coordinate their accession with that of another State.

This envisages the possibility of a P-5 arrangement, agreement between Israel and certain Arab States, and a coordinated ratification by India and Pakistan. Although most consider the concept of a waiver conference now to be dead, not all delegations have abandoned the hope of combining a list of States with some mechanism for enabling the treaty to enter into force even if it has to bypass the non-ratification of a particular State. As expected, this issue is turning out to be one of the key stumbling blocks in the final stages of negotiations, hinging on national and security considerations and the need to balance adherence by target States with early implementation. The Chair's text provision is by no means the final word, but any alternative will have to garner convincing support.

1996 Session

The first part of the 1996 session ran from 22 January to 29 March. The second part will run from 13 May until 28 June, and the final part from 29 July to 13 September.

Note: The latest Red Report, ACRONYM No 9, gives a fuller summary of CTBT negotiations to the end of March and is available from Disarmament Intelligence Review or on the DFAX Websites.

Documents and Sources

Russia CD statement on nuclear stockpile maintenance

Statement by Ambassador Grigory Berdennikov, Permanent Representative of the Russian Federation, Plenary Meeting of the Conference on Disarmament, 14 May 1996

Ambassador Berdennikov concluded his short statement by reading out (and submitting as a CD document) a statement made by Russia on 19 April: 'Statement by the Press Secretary of the President of the Russian Federation concerning the Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty.' The statement, reproduced in full below, sets out Russia's plans for maintaining its nuclear weapons stockpile and programme without recourse to nuclear testing:

"'The Russian Federation is a steady advocate of a comprehensive nuclear test ban. This October, it will be five years since Russia maintains its moratorium on nuclear tests.

I am convinced that the Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty (CTBT), the elaboration of which is now entering its decisive stage, will be a powerful factor preventing the proliferation of nuclear weapons and their qualitative improvement.

Guided by the desire to facilitate the prompt elaboration of the treaty at the Conference on Disarmament, I declare that Russia supports the commitment to ban any nuclear weapon test explosion and any other nuclear explosion in any environment.

With this in mind, we proceed from the assumption that Russia, like other nuclear powers, bears particular responsibility for ensuring the safety of its nuclear arsenals, pending the general and complete elimination of nuclear weapons, which remains our ultimate goal.

In this connection, when the CTBT becomes effective, Russia will have to conduct nuclear stockpile maintenance activities which will not be in contravention with the ban to be imposed by the future treaty. To this end, the following measures will be implemented:

1. Adoption and implementation of a Federal Program of activities aimed at ensuring the safety and reliability of the Russian nuclear arsenal without conducting nuclear explosions.

2. Continued support to existing Russian nuclear centers and the implementation of programs in the field of theoretic and nuclear technology research activities, which would ensure the maintenance of the scientific and technological potential and the high level of qualification of the scientists, designers and employees of those centers.

3. The up-keeping of the basic potential for the renewal of test explosion activities in case the situation develops in such a way that the Russian Federation will cease to be bound by the restraints contained in the treaty.

4. The continuation of activities aimed at improving our capabilities in monitoring the nuclear test ban.

5. Further improvement of information-gathering and analytical means, including intelligence means, in order to ensure the collection of reliable and timely information and data on nuclear arsenals, possible concealed development of nuclear activities or other activities conducted by third countries that could be relevant for nuclear weapons purposes.

At the same time I declare that if Russia's supreme interests are threatened, it will sue its right to withdraw from the treaty in order to conduct all necessary tests which would be called for if there is no other possibility to establish the high level of safety or reliability of any of the key types of Russian nuclear weapons.

Expressing our support to the relevant decision of the 1995 NPT Review and Extension Conference, we call upon all participants to the negotiations on the elaboration of the Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty to do whatever is possible to bring these negotiations to an end not later than September 1996.'"

New US Landmines policy

Statement by President Clinton

Statement by the President, the White House, 16 May 1996


"Today I am launching an international effort to ban anti- personnel land mines. For decades the world has been struck with horror at the devastations that land mines cause. Boys and girls at play, farmers tending their fields, ordinary travelers - in all, more than 25,000 people a year are maimed or killed by mines left behind when wars ended. We must act so that the children of the world can walk without fear on the earth beneath them.

To end this carnage, the United States will seek a worldwide agreement as soon as possible to end the use of all anti-personnel land mines. The United States will lead a global effort to eliminate these terrible weapons and to stop the enormous loss of human life. The steps I announced today build on the work we have done to clear mines in 14 nations, from Bosnia to Afghanistan, from Cambodia to Namibia. They build as well on the export moratorium on land mines we have observed for four years - an effort that, thankfully, 32 other nations have joined.

To pursue our goal of a worldwide ban, today I order several unilateral actions. First, I am directing that effective immediately, our Armed Forces discontinue the use of all so-called 'dumb' anti-personnel mines. Those which remain active until detonated are cleared. The only exception will be for those mines required to defend our American troops and our allies from aggression on the Korean Peninsula and those needed for training purposes. The rest of these mines, more than 4 million in all, will be removed from our arsenals and destroyed by 1999.

Just as the world has a responsibility to see to it that a child in Cambodia can walk to school in safety, as Commander-in-Chief, my responsibility is also to safeguard the safety, the lives of our men and women in uniform. Because of the continued and unique threat of aggression in the Korean Peninsula, I have therefore decided that in any negotiations on a ban, the United States will and must protect our rights to use the mines there. We will do so until the threat is ended or until alternatives to land mines become available.

Until an international ban takes effect, the United States will reserve the right to use so-called 'smart mines' or self- destructing mines as necessary, because there may be battlefield situations in which these will save lives of our soldiers.

Let me emphasize: These smart mines are not the hidden killers that have caused so much suffering around the world. They meet standards set by international agreement. They destroy themselves within days, and they pose virtually no threat to civilian life once a battle is over. But under the comprehensive international ban we seek, use of even these smart anti-personnel mines would also be ended.

We're determined that lands around the world will never again be sown with terror. That is why I will propose a resolution at the 51st United Nations General Assembly this Fall, urging the nations of the world to support a worldwide ban on land mines. I have instructed Ambassador Albright to begin work now on this resolution.

Third, while the exceptions I have mentioned are necessary to protect American lives, I am determined to end our reliance on these weapons completely. Therefore, I am directing the Secretary of Defense to begin work immediately on research and development of alternative technologies that will not pose new dangers to civilians.

Fourth, as we move forward to prevent the mine fields of the future, we must also strengthen the efforts to clear those that still exist today. At this moment, unbelievably, some 100 million mines still lie just beneath the Earth, in Europe, in Asia, in Africa and in Central America.

To help end the anguish they cause, the Department of Defense will expand its efforts to develop better mine detection and mine- clearing technology for use in the many countries that are still plagued by mines. We will also strengthen our programs for training and assisting other nations as they strive to rid their territory of these devices. For these efforts, as well as those to develop alternatives to anti-personnel mines, we will assure sufficient funding. I will personally work with Congress on this issue. ..."

Statement by Chair of the Joint Chiefs of Staff

Statement by General John Shalikishvali, United States Information Agency, 16 May 1996

Full text

"I strongly endorse the US policy to pursue an international agreement that would effectively ban the use, stockpiling, production and transfer of anti-personnel landmines (APLs). I along with all responsible citizens, abhor the reckless and illegal use of anti-personnel landmines. Such practices have caused countless civilian casualties and incalculable human suffering.

At the same time, my first obligation must be to the safety and security of our men and women in uniform. It is they who must, day- in and day-out, go in harm's way and perform those missions our nation asks of them. For years, the US military has responsibly employed anti-personnel landmines in accordance with the laws of land warfare. In recent years, this became even more important as US force levels declined and our military restructured.

With these issues in mind, I asked the Joint Staff to undertake a review of our use of APLs, taking into account my responsibility for protecting US forces, as well as the compelling humanitarian dimensions of this issue. In addition, I sought the views of the Joint Chiefs, our unified Commanders in Chief, as well as other experts.

The Chiefs and I concluded that with very limited exceptions, we could immediately terminate the US military's use of non-self- destructing APLs and work toward the ultimate goal of ending our reliance on all anti-personnel landmines.

The Joint Chiefs and I firmly believe that we have charted a prudent and responsible course that will lead to the elimination of all APLs, while continuing to protect American lives. We are convinced it is the right thing to do and there is no doubt the US military must be a leader in this global humanitarian effort."

Remarks by Secretary of State Warren Christopher & Secretary of Defense William Perry

Remarks made at a White House press conference, White House Transcript, 16 May

Remarks by Secretary Christopher


"In 1994 the President also dedicated our nation to the goal of eventually eliminating all anti-personnel land mines. Today we have a road map for achieving that objective. The President has asked me and his foreign policy team to move forward on that road map as rapidly as possible. As the President said, we will propose a resolution at the 51st General Assembly this fall calling for an international agreement to ban all forms of anti-personnel mines. We will begin to consult immediately with our allies on the best way to achieve this.

One possible approach would be to proceed through the Conference on Disarmament in Geneva. That's where we succeeded in negotiating a chemical weapons convention, and that is where we're moving forward toward agreement this year on a comprehensive nuclear test ban. ...

Bosnia makes it clear that these weapons do not cease to kill when peace treaties are signed and the guns of war fall silent. These anti-personnel land mines do not distinguish between civilians and combatants; indeed, they probably kill more children than soldiers. They frustrate our foreign policy goals because they make it so much harder for nations to move from conflict to reconstruction and growth. It's very clear to me that an international ban on land mines cannot happen without American leadership, which of course is so true of many issues in the world today. ..."

Remarks by Secretary Perry


"I and all of the Chiefs [of Staff] strongly support the President's new policy. Indeed, we recommended it to him. We are all appalled by the carnage caused each year by the millions of anti-personnel land mines that are a residue of civil wars and regional conflicts. And, therefore, we seek to find a way to end this scourge.

But we also are responsible for preparing and executing our nation's war plans with maximum effectiveness and minimum casualties to the US forces. This objective to eliminate anti- personnel land mines, therefore, is partially in conflict with one of our most critical war plans, namely, the war plan to defend Korea against a mass assault.

North Koreans have more than a million infantry troops amassed just north of the DMZ - the Demilitarized Zone. Many of these are within 50 to 100 miles of Seoul. The metropolitan area of Seoul has a population in excess of 10 million inhabitants. And, therefore, our contingency war plan is designed to stop a North Korea attack before it gets to Seoul.

Today, in order to execute that war plan, it requires the use of anti-personnel mines - indeed, almost a million of them. These are necessary to delay and to disrupt the mass infantry attack long enough for our air power to get in and be fully effective. If we simply remove those anti-personnel land mines, it is likely that North Korea could overrun Seoul before we could finally turn the invasion around. Overrunning Seoul would entail the loss of tens of thousands of soldiers and perhaps hundreds of thousands of civilians. And, therefore, we see this as an unacceptable risk.

The proposed plan, therefore, that we made to the President protects the right to use anti-personnel land mines in Korea until, first, the possibility that the threat of a mass infantry attack is removed, or we are able to achieve alternative ways to affect our tactics of delaying and disrupting that attack.

I should emphasize that we, myself and the Chiefs, are all anxious to remove this exception. And we will move vigorously on both parallel paths that I have described to you so that we can remove that exception as soon as possible."

White House Fact Sheet

'US announces anti-personnel landmine policy', White House Fact Sheet, 16 May 1996

Full text

"People in 64 countries, mostly in the developing world, face a daily threat of being killed or maimed by the estimated 100 million landmines in place today. Anti-Personnel Landmines (APL) claim more than 25,000 casualties each year, obstruct economic development and keep refugees from returning to their homeland. As more than a million mines are still being laid each year, they will remain a growing threat to civilian populations for decades unless action is taken now.

The US initiative sets out a concrete path to a global ban on APL but ensures that as the United States pursues this ban, essential US military requirements and commitments to our allies will be protected.

International Ban

The United States will aggressively pursue an international agreement to ban use, stockpiling, production, and transfer of anti-personnel landmines with a view to completing the negotiation as soon as possible.

Korea Exception

The United States views the security situation on the Korean Peninsula as a unique case and in the negotiation of this agreement will protect our right to use APL there until alternatives become available or the risk of aggression has been removed.

Ban on Non-Self-Destructing APL

Effective immediately, the United States will unilaterally undertake not to use, and to place in inactive stockpile status with intent to demilitarize by the end of 1999, all non-self- destructing APL not needed to (a) train personnel engaged in demining and countermining operations, or (b) defend the United States and its allies from armed aggression across the Korean Demilitarized Zone.

Self-Destructing APL

Between now and the time an international agreement takes effect, the United States will reserve the option to use self- destructing/self-deactivating APL, subject to the restrictions the United States has accepted in the Convention on Conventional Weapons, in military hostilities to safeguard American lives and hasten the end of fighting.

Annual Report

Beginning in 1999, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff will submit an annual report to the President and the Secretary of Defense outlining his assessment of whether there remains a military requirement for the exceptions noted above.

Program to Eliminate

The President has directed the Secretary of Defense to undertake a program of research, procurement, and other measures needed to eliminate the requirement for these exceptions and to permit both the United States and our allies to end reliance on APL as soon as possible.

Expanding Demining Efforts

The Department of Defense will undertake a substantial program to develop improved mine detection and clearing technology and to share this improved technology with the broader international community. The Department of Defense will also significantly expand its humanitarian demining program to train and assist other countries in developing effective demining programs."

CFE Review Conference

Opening US statement

Statement by Under Secretary of State Lynn Davis, CFE Review Conference, Vienna, 15 May 1996


"When CFE was signed in November 1990, it marked the first time in history that European nations, together with the United States and Canada, agreed to reduce their conventional armaments and to accept unprecedented information exchange and verification provisions. ...

Over the past five years we have largely met these goals. More than 50,000 pieces of equipment have been eliminated and more than 2,000 intrusive on-site inspections have been carried out. The transparency and predictability provided by the CFE treaty have helped transform former adversaries into partners.

While we have been successful in implementing the treaty, difficulties have arisen. These were anticipated by the drafters of the treaty, who set in place a mechanism for their resolution. Accordingly, the joint consultative group has dealt with a number of issues, the most serious of which concerns the flank limits.

In November 1995 the joint consultative group reached agreement among the 30 CFE parties on a framework for resolving the flank problem through a combination of measures:

- a realignment of the flank map.

- a time-line for withdrawal of excess equipment.

- enhanced transparency measures and constraints.

Considerable progress has been made on elaborating specific provisions in these three areas, but resolution of this flank issue will require flexibility on the part of all of us. ...

We recognize that there have been many changes since the treaty was signed. The review conference offers an opportunity to explore the implications of the changes and to put in place a process for making appropriate adaptations.

As we look ahead we see two basic goals:

- militarily, we want to ensure that CFE continues to provide a solid foundation for security through real constraints on conventional forces.

- politically, we want to foster cooperative approaches to security by generating a sense among all the States in Europe that the CFE treaty can advance their own security interests.

The United States seeks [a] CFE modernization [that will] provide for NATO's continuing role in safeguarding military security in Europe, by ensuring that the CFE treaty continues to restrain threats faced by all European states. Beyond this traditional role, the treaty has also been the basis for transparency and predictability in Europe and needs to promote these goals.

We will also want to use CFE to reinforce broader efforts underway to reshape Europe's security structures. The CFE regime provides the best example of what we mean by 'cooperative security' structures in Europe. It does this through the process of ongoing military discussions among the States of Europe and is the venue for reacting to changing security developments.

CFE needs to play in the future a central role in our common security agenda by tying all its States to the process of transformation that is now underway and by reinforcing our shared commitment to cooperative approaches to security.

The challenges before us...as we begin adapting CFE to the new situation in Europe are much different from the challenges faced by the original framers of the CFE treaty, but they are no less difficult. We trust that we will be as successful as they were in fashioning a durable framework that serves our common military and political interests, and in which CFE will continue to play a central role in Europe's security and stability."

US Fact Sheet

'Fact Sheet: Conventional Forces in Europe Conference', Arms Control and Disarmament Agency (ACDA), 8 May 1996

Full text


Like other arms control treaties, the CFE Treaty provides for periodic review conferences (Article XXI, paragraph 1), to be convened by the Depositary (The Netherlands) - in this case 46 months after its entry into force - and at five-year intervals thereafter, to conduct a review of the operation of the treaty. The first review conference will be convened in Vienna, Austria, May 15 to 31, 1996. The US delegation will be headed by Ambassador Thomas Graham of the Arms Control and Disarmament Agency.

The principal objective of the 1996 Review Conference is to assess the operation and implementation of the CFE Treaty during its first five years. Specifically, this effort involves: (1) examination of the implementation of the limitation and reduction provisions of the treaty, and (2) assessment of implementation of the verification and information provisions of the treaty.

Treaty Implementation

Despite many political developments since the CFE Treaty was signed in 1990 - such as the dissolution of the Soviet Union - implementation of most of the provisions of this complex treaty has generally been smooth. Most aspects of implementation have improved throughout the course of the past three and three- quarters years. The related CFE 1-A Agreement, which limits full- time military manpower in the CFE region, has provided an additional increment of stability on the European continent.

By the end of the reduction period prescribed by the treaty, the 30 CFE States Parties completed and verified by inspection the destruction or conversion to other uses of over 50,000 battle tanks, armored combat vehicles, artillery pieces, combat aircraft and attack helicopters (more than 18,300 by the newly independent States of the former Soviet Union - the NIS). In addition, the States Parties conducted and accepted some 2,300 intrusive on-site inspections of military units and installations, and of specified areas.

The most serious implementation issues came to the forefront as the States Parties approached the end of the reduction period and the time when treaty limits would go into effect. As of November 1995, when CFE equipment limits took effect, Russian equipment in the treaty's flank zone (see below) was significantly in excess of treaty-permitted levels. Russia and Ukraine both raised concerns about the impact of the flank limits on their security; this issue has been under discussion for many months in the CFE Joint Consultative Group (JCG) in Vienna. Additionally, four of the NIS failed to complete their required reductions by the end of the reduction period. The eight NIS fell almost 2,800 items of equipment short of their collective obligation to reduce at least as many pieces of TLE (Treaty-Limited Equipment) as the former Soviet Union would have to reduce as of treaty signature. Five NIS were in excess of one or more of their overall national TLE limits, while four of them also exceeded their limits for the flank region.

Finally, Russia did not meet an associated commitment to destroy 14,500 pieces of equipment of types limited by the treaty east of the Urals, as required by a Soviet political agreement of June 1991. Through the end of 1995, the Russians had notified the reduction east of the Urals of only some 6,500 items of equipment, a number more than sufficient to fulfill Russia's legally binding obligation on east of the Urals destruction, but insufficient to meet the separate, politically binding commitment.

The CFE Treaty: Mandate and Achievements

The Treaty on Conventional Armed Forces in Europe was signed in Paris on November 19, 1990, by heads of State or government of the 22 members of NATO and the former Warsaw Treaty Organization then present for the Paris Summit of the Conference on Security and Cooperation in Europe (renamed the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe, effective January 1995). Following the reunification of Germany, the disintegration of the Soviet Union, the dissolution of the Warsaw Pact, and the separation of Czechoslovakia into the Czech and Slovak Republics in the early 1990s, the total number of States Parties to the CFE Treaty increased to 30 (with the eight successor States of the USSR assuming its treaty obligations on June 5, 1992).

The treaty provisionally entered into force 17 July 1992, and formally entered into force on 9 November, 1992. It was complemented by the politically binding CFE 1-A Agreement of July 10, 1992, which limits the personnel strength of the conventional armed forces of each State Party in the CFE area of application. Additionally, a political agreement of June 14, 1991 committed the Soviet Union/Russia to the destruction of nearly 16,000 items of military equipment located east of the Urals by the end of 1995.

The preamble to the treaty describes its objectives as follows: strengthening stability and security in Europe through the creation of balanced conventional forces; establishing lower levels for conventional armaments/equipment; eliminating disparities prejudicial to stability and security; and, as a priority, precluding the capability for launching surprise attacks or large-scale offensive operations.

Notwithstanding the historic changes in Europe's geopolitical landscape since 1990, the treaty continues to foster the goals of its mandate, and remains in the best interest of all States Parties.

The treaty reduces and limits holdings of major conventional military equipment in Europe - battle tanks, artillery, armored combat vehicles, combat aircraft and attack helicopters. The resulting equipment ceilings - the core of the treaty - came into force on November 16, 1995, after a 40-month period in which reduction of excess equipment took place. This phase was followed by the 120-day residual level validation period (November 17, 1995 to March 15, 1996), which involved random inspections to confirm that military equipment had in fact been reduced to levels specified by the treaty and associated documents.

The Flank Issue

The CFE Treaty's four subzone ceilings further restrict geographically the distribution of the equipment CFE States or groups can deploy in the CFE zone in order to prevent destabilizing concentrations of forces in any one region of Europe. The flank zone is a subzone of particular political and military importance, as it comprises territory belonging to Russia, Norway, Iceland, Ukraine, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia, Moldova, Turkey, Greece, Romania, and Bulgaria.

Since 1994, citing various military, political and economic concerns, Russia and Ukraine have been seeking relief from CFE Treaty equipment limits for the flank zone. The United States and its NATO allies believe that full implementation of CFE's commitments is critical to future European security, and have urged both countries to solve their problems within the treaty's existing flexibility concerning deployments in the flanks. With growing recognition that this was apparently not possible, and that there were some legitimate aspects to Russian and Ukrainian complaints, all States Parties agreed to work toward a cooperative solution that will not require a formal treaty amendment. These concerns are being discussed at the highest levels bilaterally among the major parties concerned, and in the multilateral forum of the JCG on the basis that any solution must be acceptable to all 30 CFE signatories, and ensure their national security.


For the United States, the CFE Treaty has been part of a continuing effort to achieve stability in Europe. Strict implementation of its provisions continues to serve as the basis for a new security relationship between East and West. The treaty has proven itself a vital element of the structure for peace in post-Cold War Europe. It has significantly enhanced security, accountability, cooperation, and openness throughout the area of application. In sum, this landmark treaty has been and will remain the cornerstone of European security and stability."

Editor's note: on 15 May, ACDA issued a question-and-answer brief on the Conference. The following extracts address the question of Russia's unhappiness with the Treaty as it currently stands.

"Question: What is the 'flank' zone?

- To assuage concerns of States in the outermost areas of the treaty's area of application that equipment moved back from the central zone might be massed in these "flank" areas, a separate, lower set of limits was assigned to apply in this area only.

- The flanks consist of the Black Sea Littoral area (the former Odesa military district) in Ukraine, the Caucasus region (the North Caucasus military district), and the northwestern area of Russia (the Leningrad military district) and the entire territories of Norway, Iceland, Greece, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia, Moldova, Romania, Bulgaria, and most of Turkey.

Question: What concern does Russia have with the flank limits?

- The CFE treaty limits the number of tanks, artillery, and ACVs (armored combat vehicles) that may be deployed in the flank regions. For some time, Russian authorities have claimed that additional equipment is needed in the flanks because of the changes of the last five years and instability in the Caucasus region.

- It is important to note the flank issue does not involve the treaty's overall limits. Rather, the flank issue revolves around treaty restrictions of the amount of equipment, under these overall ceilings, which can be deployed in certain regions.

Question: Has there been a proposal made to the Russians on the flank issue?

- The United States and our NATO allies have for some time been looking at ways to address Russian and Ukrainian concerns about the treaty's flank limits. In late September 1995, NATO allies presented a proposal to Russia and Ukraine which we urged them to accept as a basis for resolving this issue. Ukraine accepted the proposal. In late October, Russia accepted the concept of a map realignment and presented a counter-proposal. In November, all 30 CFE States Parties agreed to resolve the flank problem on the basis of a geographic realignment of the flank zone, a withdrawal schedule, and constraining and transparency measures. Subsequent discussion clarified the perceived equipment needs of the Russian Federation and better defined concerns of other parties about equipment in the area. In the latest round of negotiations in March, a new proposal was presented to Russia. Russia again offered a counterproposal which was discussed at the meeting of the two Presidents in April.

- While the specifics of these proposals differ, they have all been based on the concept of realigning the flank zone map plus accompanying transparency measures, such as additional inspections and information exchanges, and a time-line for the removal of excess equipment. Discussions are continuing between NATO allies and Russia on the elements of flank solution.

- This is not a new issue. Treaty parties have been discussing aspects of the flank issue over the past two years in Vienna in the Joint Consultative Group (JCG), the forum established by the treaty to deal with implementation concerns. ...

Question: How is the current proposal structured?

- The proposal would involve a realignment of a portion of the Soviet map provided at treaty signature. This realignment would be accompanied by agreed offsets, to include additional information exchanges, inspection opportunities, and constraints. It would require Russia to reduce its equipment in the flank zone according to an agreed schedule.

- The map is a document associated with, but not part of, the treaty. For the US, adjustments of the map along the lines of the NATO proposal would require Congressional approval.

Question: Does this approach represent a capitulation to Russian interests?

- No. This approach would not permit Russia to keep current equipment levels in the flank region. Russia would still be required to make substantial withdrawals from the flank region to meet flank limits.

- The proposal recognizes that the CFE treaty has been an extremely successful arms control mechanism which has served the interests of all parties and remains the cornerstone for European security. Since its entry into force in 1992, CFE has resulted in the destruction of over 50,000 pieces of military equipment. Russia alone has destroyed or converted to non-military uses nearly 11,000 pieces of equipment, including tanks, artillery, armored combat vehicles, combat aircraft, and attack helicopters.

- CFE's limits and zonal structure were crafted to apply, inter alia, to a unitary Soviet Union and at a time when the Warsaw Pact existed. As circumstances have changed, it is natural that concerns have emerged in the course of applying those limits to an entirely new European reality. ...

Question: What is the status of compliance with the treaty?

- The most serious implementation issues came to the forefront as the States Parties approached the end of the reduction period and the time when treaty limits would go into effect. As of November 1995, when CFE equipment limits took effect, Russian equipment in the treaty's flank zone was significantly in excess of treaty- permitted levels. Russia and Ukraine both raised concerns about the impact of the flank limits; this issue has been under discussion for many months in the CFE Joint Consultative Group. Additionally, four of the NIS failed to complete their required reductions by the end of the reduction period. The eight NIS fell almost 2,800 items of equipment short of their collective obligation to reduce at least as many pieces of the TLE as the former Soviet Union (FSU) would have to reduce as of treaty signature. Five NIS were in excess of one or more of their overall national TLE limits, while four of them also exceeded their limits for the flank region.

- Finally, Russia did not fully meet associated commitments to destroy approximately 16,000 pieces of equipment of types limited by the treaty east of the Urals. Russia did meet a legally-binding obligation to destroy 1,500 pieces of equipment. It did not meet the politically binding commitment to destroy an additional 14,500 pieces of equipment. Through the end of 1995, the Russians had notified the destruction east of the Urals of only some 5,000 items of equipment in fulfillment of the politically binding commitment. ..."

US statement ruling out sanctions against China

'No basis for nonproliferation sanctions against China', Statement by State Department spokesperson Nicholas Burns, 10 May.

See also News Review.

Full text

"In the last few months, the United States and China have engaged in intensive discussions on the questions of nuclear nonproliferation and nuclear-related exports. These discussions have addressed US concerns about Chinese nuclear cooperation with other countries, including the transfer of ring magnets.

In the course of these discussions, especially the 19 April meeting in The Hague between Secretary Christopher and Vice Premier Qian, the Chinese provided clarifications and assurances regarding China's policies toward nuclear nonproliferation and nuclear cooperation with other countries. Of particular significance, the Chinese assured us that China will not provide assistance to unsafeguarded nuclear facilities, and the Chinese will now confirm this in a public statement. In addition, senior Chinese officials have informed us that the Government of China was unaware of any transfers of ring magnets by a Chinese entity, and they have confirmed our understanding that China's policy of not assisting unsafeguarded nuclear programs will preclude future transfers of ring magnets to unsafeguarded facilities.

On the basis of a close review of the evidence available in this case, and the clarifications and assurances provided by China regarding past transfers and Chinese nuclear export control policies, the Secretary of State has concluded that there is not a sufficient basis to warrant a determination that sanctionable activity occurred under Section 825 of the Nuclear Proliferation Prevention Act of 1994. Accordingly, sanctions will not be imposed in the current situation and Export-Import Bank operations in support of US exports to China are returned to normal.

The United States looks forward to continuing consultations with China on export control policies and related issues. These consultations can help us to develop a common understanding on fully effective export control policies and practices and to strengthen national export control systems, and thus will help avoid future problems and provide an additional avenue to advance our common nonproliferation goals."


The statement was read out by State Department spokesperson Nicholas Burns at a 'Special briefing on US-China discussions on non-proliferation and nuclear-related exports' on 10 May. Having read the statement, Mr. Burns elaborated on it as follows:

"The Chinese have given us, in the decision that we arrived at this morning, clarifications and commitments regarding their nuclear export policy. Specifically, I want to draw your attention to four important elements that have emerged from the discussions between the United States and China.

First is that China will issue a public statement...that China will not provide assistance to unsafeguarded nuclear programs in any country.

We believe the Chinese undertaking represents a significant, new public commitment by China with respect to its nuclear cooperation with other countries. That's the first thing I wanted to point out.

Second, the Chinese have confirmed our understanding that this new commitment means that they will not transfer ring magnets in the future to unsafeguarded facilities.

Third, China has agreed with the United States to hold consultations on national export policies and practices. The understanding we've arrived at provides for continued consultations on export controls.

These will help the United States and China to develop common understandings on export control policies for nuclear-related items, but they will also facilitate cooperating in strengthening the export control systems. It will also serve as a promising foundation, we think, for advancing the broader goal we have of eliminating, preventing the spread of dangerous weapons.

On the Ex-Im question, Secretary Christopher sent a letter to the Ex-Im this morning apprising the Ex-Im of the understanding that we've reached with China. As a result of the receipt of that letter in Ex-Im - and it has been received - Ex-Im operations will now return to normal, meaning that final decisions on loan applications for American companies pertaining to China can now be made.

I would also draw your attention to another point. The statement that I've read, and the commitments obtained from the Chinese, were precisely what we would have sought as a basis to remove sanctions had it been necessary to impose sanctions. I think that is a particularly important point.

I can also tell you that once the decision was made this morning, the Secretary began a series of Congressional calls. He was assisted in this by others in the Department of State - other senior officials here. We have contacted a number of members of Congress to inform them of the decision. We, of course, are also contacting a number of governments, including the Government of Pakistan to inform them of the decision that we have made."

Mr. Burns then fielded questions from the press. Extracts follow:

"Question: 'Does the United States Government accept the Chinese Government's statement as true, that it had no idea that ring magnets were being exported to Pakistan?'

Mr. Burns: '...I think there's no question that there was a ring magnet transfer to Pakistan on the part of the State entity in China. The Chinese, however, have assured us that the government in Beijing - the policymakers in Beijing - were not aware of this transfer. ... Certainly, we accept that now as a result of the work that we've done with the Chinese.'

Question: '...what makes these assurances from the Chinese more credible or persuasive than the assurances they gave that they would stop pirating software, or a few years ago the assurances they gave they were not exporting Silkworm missiles or any number of other assurances that turned out not to be the case?'

Mr. Burns: '...I think it's very important that not only did we have expert-level discussions over the last couple of months with the Chinese on this issue, but Secretary Christopher was able to have an important discussion with Vice Premier and Foreign Minister Qian in The Hague. ...

There's been a high-level discussion of this. There's been a good deal of cable traffic, of telephone conversations, of diplomatic conversations. The commitments that they have made to us are important commitments, and we accept those as commitments by the Government of China.

Of course, the United States will monitor this agreement very carefully. Of course, we'll want to make sure, as well as the Government of China, that there are no such transfers in the future. In monitoring this agreement, we will see then the proof of the agreement. But we certainly expect that this agreement is going to be carried out to the letter.'

Question: 'There are two parties involved in this transaction. Is there any blame or any sanctions attached to Pakistan?'

Mr. Burns: 'I think that in the case of Pakistan, we certainly informed the Government of Pakistan of the decision that we've made, and I can tell you that the Brown Amendment is in place, and there's no reason, I think, to change the Brown Amendment. So we'll go ahead with the Government of Pakistan as we can.'

Editor's note: the 'Brown Amendment', passed in 1995, permits a one-off waiver of a ban on US military sales to Pakistan. The US is currently proceeding (see last issue) with a portion of a large military sale suspended in 1990 under the terms of the 1985 Pressler Amendment, mandating the termination of US military assistance to Pakistan as a means of registering US disapproval of Pakistan's alleged nuclear weapons programme.

Second meeting of the Canberra Commission

The Canberra Commission on the Elimination of Nuclear Weapons - established by Australia's Labour Prime Minister Paul Keating in November 1995 (see issues 1 & 2) - held its second meeting on 22- 24 April in New York City. The documentation which follows was kindly provided by the Australian High Commission in London.

The Commission's 17 members are: Ambassador Celso Amorin (Brazil); Retired General George Butler (US); Ambassador Richard Butler (Australia, Commission Chair); Retired Field Marshall Lord Carver (UK); Commander Jacques-Yves Cousteau (France); Ambassador Jayantha Dhanapala (Sri Lanka); Ambassador Rolf Ekeus (Sweden); Retired Ambassador Dr. Nabil Elarby (Egypt); Professor Ryukichi Imai (Japan); Dr. Ronald McCoy (Malaysia); Robert McNamara (US); Professor Robert O'Neill (Australia); Retired Ambassador Qian Jiadong (China); Michel Rocard (France); Professor Joseph Rotblat (UK); Professor Roald Sagdeev (Russia); Dr. Maj-Britt Theorin (Sweden).

Statement by Foreign Minister Downer

'Second meeting of the Canberra Commission on the Elimination of Nuclear Weapons', Media Release from the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Mr Alexander Downer, 22 April 1996

On 2 March, the Liberal Party, led by John Howard, won the Australian General Election. Shortly before the second meeting took place, the new Foreign Minister, Alexander Downer, issued the statement reproduced below. Minister Downer did not repeat the commitment made by his Labour predecessor, Gareth Evans, that the report would be submitted to the United Nations General Assembly in September this year. He also urged the Commissioners to "balance its instincts for idealism with realism", and advised: "If in doubt...err on the side of realism."


"I take this opportunity to announce that I wrote to Commissioners individually in March to advise them of the Government's support for the work of the Commission. In my letters I noted that since the first meeting of the Commission held in Canberra in January, General Elections in Australia had returned a new Government under John Howard. I drew their attention to the broad continuity of approach to non-proliferation, disarmament and arms control issues by Australia's major parties.

In January the members of the Commission addressed the task before them of developing ideas and proposals for a concrete and realistic program to achieve a world totally free of nuclear weapons. The meeting was successful in covering the full range of relevant issues, in agreeing to a structure for the report to be submitted to the Prime Minister in August and in establishing a program of work for the period ahead.

I consider the April meeting of the Commission to be equally important. For the first time Commissioners will have before them elements of text which they will consider with a view to setting precise directions for their report.

I have today in a separate message emphasised to members of the Commission the importance of their identifying concrete and realistic steps for achieving a nuclear-weapon-free world. I noted from the mandate that the proliferation of nuclear weapons is widely recognised as having become the most serious threat to global security. I advised the Commission that it is in a position to show that major benefits flow from progress towards a nuclear- weapon-free world, including the positive multiplier effect of a cooperative system of inter-State behaviour.

In my message I said the Commission must identify steps that are logical, achievable and likely to lead to the desired effect. In so doing it can not only help to mark out the disarmament agenda into the next century but also materially help to move deliberations along this course. I emphasised that the proposals it produces should above all be practical. To carry weight, the Commission's report will need to convince opinion-formers and decision-makers in perhaps fewer than a dozen States of the benefits of a world without nuclear weapons. It will also need to attract support within the wider global community, including those constituencies who can influence opinion-formers and decision- makers.

The Government believes that in undertaking the challenging task before it the Commission must balance its instincts for idealism with realism. If in doubt, the Commission should err on the side of realism: its report should point to measures which are practicable and achievable and will command support. The Government looks forward to receiving the Commissioner's report."

Press Release

'Press Points', Canberra Commission Meeting, New York, 22-24 April 1996


"The Australian Government, through a message to the Commissioners from Foreign Minister Downer on 22 April, reaffirmed its commitment to the work of the Canberra Commission, particularly the importance of identifying concrete and realistic steps for achieving a nuclear-weapon-free world.

At this meeting Commissioners considered in more detail the substance of the final report.

Central to the Commission's consideration of that subject, and through all the Commission's work, has been the Commission's continuing commitment to a world without nuclear weapons.

The Commission discussed, but inconclusively at this stage, a range of concrete measures through which the possibility of a nuclear-weapon-free world might be realised.

The Commission agreed to meet again in the middle of July in Europe at which time it is hoped it will come close to concluding its report.

The Commission will meet for the final time in the middle of August in Canberra to fulfill its mandate by presenting its report to the Australian Government."

G8 Nuclear Summit: Final Declaration and Statements

I: Final declaration

Moscow Nuclear Safety and Security Summit Declaration, 20 April 1996


"1. The end of the Cold War and the political and economic reforms in Russia have opened a new era in our relationship and have provided the international community with real possibilities for cooperation in the fields of nuclear safety and security. The Moscow meeting is an important step in the realization of these objectives. ...

2. We are committed to give an absolute priority to safety in the use of nuclear energy. As we approach the tenth anniversary of the Chernobyl accident, it is our shared objective that such a catastrophe cannot reoccur.

We are ready to cooperate among ourselves so that the use of nuclear energy is conducted all over the world consistently with fundamental principles of nuclear safety. Further, we are committed to measures which will enable nuclear power, already a significant contributor to electricity supply in those countries choosing to exploit it, to continue in the next century to play an important role in meeting future world energy demand consistent with the goal of sustainable development agreed at the Rio Conference in 1992.

We recognize the importance of openness and transparency to obtain public trust which is a key factor in the use of nuclear energy.

3. The security of all nuclear material is an essential part of the responsible and peaceful use of nuclear energy. In particular, the safe management of fissile material, including material resulting from the dismantling of nuclear weapons, is imperative, not least as a safeguard against any risk of illicit trafficking in nuclear materials.

4. In the spirit of the decisions adopted during the...[NPT Review & Extension] Conference of May 1995, including the Decision on Principles and Objectives for Nuclear Non-Proliferation and Disarmament, we will increase our cooperation...by promoting adherence to the NPT, working vigorously to strengthen the International Atomic Energy Agency...safeguards system and through effective and responsible export control measures. We are issuing a separate statement on CTBT. We renew our commitment to the immediate commencement and early conclusion of negotiations on a non-discriminatory and universally applicable convention banning the production of fissile material for nuclear weapons or other nuclear explosive devices. ...

Safety of Civilian Nuclear Reactors

6. Nuclear safety has to prevail over all other considerations. ...

7. The promotion of an effective nuclear safety culture in each country with nuclear installations is essential to that end. ...

9. Nuclear safety can...be enhanced by greater international transparency in nuclear power activities, in particular by means of peer reviews, and this should lead to existing reactors which do not meet current safety requirements being brought to an acceptable level of safety or ceasing operation.

10. The adoption of the Convention on Nuclear Safety...is a major accomplishment in this field. We urge all countries to sign this Convention and to complete internal procedures to join so that the Convention can be brought into force expeditiously certainly before the end of 1996.

11. National efforts have been made in the countries of Central and Eastern Europe and the Newly Independent States to improve nuclear safety levels... [W]e acknowledge these important efforts...but note that further substantial progress is still required. ...

Nuclear liability

12. An effective nuclear liability regime must assure adequate compensation to victims of, and for damage caused by, nuclear accidents. ...the regime should at the same time protect industrial suppliers from unwarranted legal action. ...

14. It is essential that countries with nuclear installations that have not yet done so establish an effective regime for liability for nuclear damage corresponding to these principles. ...

Energy Sector Strategies in transition countries

16. Efficient market-oriented strategies for energy sector reform are essential to promote nuclear safety. ... All countries in transition should pursue such market-oriented reforms...

Nuclear Waste Management

International Convention

19. The development of the Convention on the Safety of Radioactive Waste Management...is of paramount importance. We call on all countries generating nuclear waste with nuclear installations to participate actively in the preparation of this Convention under the auspices of the IAEA and to encourage its effective finalisation and prompt adoption.

Ocean Dumping

20. We commit ourselves to ban dumping at sea of radioactive waste and encourage all States to adhere at the earliest possible date to the 1993 amendment of the London Convention.

Nuclear Material Security

Programme on Preventing and Combating Illicit Trafficking in Nuclear Material

21. ...we have agreed on, and released, a programme [see below] on preventing and combating illicit trafficking in nuclear material to ensure increased cooperation among our governments in all aspects of prevention, detection, exchange of information, investigation and prosecution in cases of illicit nuclear trafficking.

We call on other governments to join us in implementing this programme.

Nuclear Material Control, Accountancy and Physical Protection

22. ... We underline the need for the urgent strengthening of IAEA capabilities to detect undeclared nuclear activities. We note that these measures are also conducive to preventing illicit trafficking of nuclear material. ...

24. We urge ratification by all States of the Convention on the Physical Protection of Nuclear Material and encourage the application of the IAEA recommendations on the Physical Protection of Nuclear Material.

25. We pledge our support for efforts to ensure that all sensitive nuclear material (separated plutonium and highly enriched uranium) designated as not intended for use for meeting defence requirements is safely stored, protected and placed under IAEA safeguards (in the Nuclear Weapon States, the relevant voluntary offer IAEA-safeguards agreements) as soon as it is practicable to do so.

Safe and effective Management of weapons fissile material designated as no longer required for defence purposes

28. We welcome the steps that the United States and the Russian Federation have taken to blend highly-enriched uranium (HEU) from dismantled nuclear weapons to low-enriched uranium (LEU) for peaceful non-explosive purposes, and the cooperation programs of Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the United Kingdom, the United States of America and other States with the Russian Federation for the safe storage, the peaceful uses of fissile material released by the dismantlement of nuclear weapons, and their safe and secure transportation for that purpose; we encourage other efforts along these lines.

29. We are determined to identify appropriate strategies for the management of fissile material designated as no longer required for defence purposes. Options include safe and secure long-term storage, vitrification or other methods of permanent disposal, and conversion into mixed-oxide fuel (MOX) for use in nuclear reactors. ... We shall convene an international meeting of experts in order to examine available options... The meeting will take place in France by the end of 1996. ..."

II: Separate statements

All statements issued on 20 April.

Programme for Preventing and Combating Illicit Trafficking in Nuclear Material


"International efforts to suppress illicit trafficking in nuclear material should address several fundamental aspects of the problem:

* safe and secure storage of nuclear material and effective material protection, control, and accounting to prevent its diversion;

* cooperative intelligence, customs, and law enforcement efforts to prevent the transportation and sale of diverted material;

* and joint efforts to identify and suppress illicit supply of, and demand for, nuclear material and to deter potential traffickers.

In addition, nuclear material released by the dismantling of nuclear weapons and no longer required for defence purposes must be safely, affordably, and effectively stored, protected and controlled, until it can be used for non-explosive purposes or safely and permanently disposed of. This material must also be placed under international safeguards as soon as it is practicable to do so. ...

In order to strengthen our collective response to illicit trafficking in nuclear material we will:

* regularly share and promptly disseminate, in accordance with the Convention on Physical Protection of Nuclear Material, information on nuclear theft and smuggling incidents;

* exchange information on significant incidents in this area, especially if sensitive material is involved, and establish appropriate national points of contact for this purpose;

* foster enhanced cooperation and coordination among our national intelligence, customs, and law enforcement agencies and cooperation with those other concerned countries in order to ensure prompt investigation and successful prosecution in cases of illicit nuclear trafficking;

* vigilantly discharge our national responsibility to ensure the effective storage, protection, control and accounting of nuclear material in our respective territories;

* exchange experience and advice among ourselves and make it available to others and support efforts to provide appropriate assistance to ensure safe and effective nuclear material storage, protection, control and accounting;

* maintain effective national systems of export licensing and control, which are important to deter and prevent illicit trafficking, and encourage and assist other States to do the same;

* support efforts to define training requirements pertaining to detection of concealed nuclear material, radiation protection, safe handling and transportation of nuclear material and radiation protection, for law enforcement agencies (customs, police) in accordance with their respective tasks and closely coordinate relevant training activities in this area;

* support the exchange of scientific information and data to permit the identification of the origin, history and route of seized illicit nuclear material';

* support efforts to ensure that all [surplus] sensitive nuclear material...is safely and effectively stored and protected and placed under IAEA safeguards...as soon as it is practicable to do so;

* work to strengthen the effective application of IAEA safeguards and encourage all States to provide adequate funding for them;

* seek to identify strategies for the safe, effective, and affordable peaceful use of nuclear material no longer required for defence purposes or for its safe permanent disposal;

* encourage bilateral and other assistance and cooperation arrangements in the above areas and support their appropriate coordination...;

* promote universal adherence to the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty...;

* contribute to the enhanced [NPT] Treaty review process and implement the Principles and Objectives...agreed at the 1995...Review and Extension Conference; and

* work to promote the immediate commencement and early conclusion of negotiations on a [fissile materials cut-off] convention..."

Statement on Complete Test Ban Treaty

Full text

"We affirmed our commitment to conclude and sign a comprehensive nuclear test ban treaty (CTBT) by September 1996. We agreed that a CTBT will be a concrete step toward the achievement of one of the highest priority objectives of the international community in the field of disarmament and non-proliferation, and the fulfilment of the obligations under article VI of the Treaty on the non- proliferation of nuclear weapons (NPT). We also agreed that the CTBT must prohibit any nuclear weapon test explosion or any other nuclear explosion. We affirmed that this would constitute a truly comprehensive nuclear test ban.

In this connection, we recalled the importance of the Decision on Principles and Objectives for Nuclear Non-Proliferation and Disarmament adopted on 11 May 1995."

Statement on Ukraine

Full text

"We met on 20 April 1996 with President Kuchma of Ukraine and together examined a wide range of issues to improve nuclear safety and security. We agreed to continue our bilateral and multilateral cooperation with Ukraine in this field.

President Kuchma announced Ukraine's endorsement of the Programme on Preventing and Combating Illicit Trafficking in Nuclear Material and expressed his willingness to support the objectives and actions described in the Moscow Nuclear Safety and Security Summit declaration. President Kuchma also endorsed the statement on CTBT.

The importance of President Kuchma's decision to close Chernobyl by the Year 2000 in accordance with the Memorandum of Understanding signed on 20 December 1995 with all its provisions was recognized.

The signatories to the Memorandum reaffirmed their commitment to its full implementation and will cooperate closely with Ukraine and with International Development Banks on measures to support Ukraine's decision. For his part, President Kuchma confirmed Ukraine's willingness to cooperate actively and efficiently within the framework of the Memorandum."

Editor's note: find below a summary of the various Conventions referred to above.

Speech by President Clinton

Address by President Clinton to the US Coast Guard Academy, Washington, DC, 22 May 1996

The speech was billed as an important summation of the Administration's arms control achievements and objectives - "the most far-reaching arms control and nonproliferation agenda in history".


"...there is more to be done for America to keep moving forward and to pass on an even safer and more prosperous world to our children as we enter this new century and a new millennium. First, we must continue to seize the extraordinary opportunity to reduce the threat of weapons of mass destruction. We have set the most far-reaching arms control and nonproliferation agenda in history, and I am determined to pursue it and complete it. Already, there are no Russian missiles pointed at our cities or our citizens. We are cutting our arsenals by two-thirds from their Cold War height. Ukraine, Belarus, and Kazakstan have been convinced to give up their nuclear weapons.

Our diplomacy backed with force persuaded North Korea to freeze its nuclear program. We have now secured the indefinite and unconditional extension of the nuclear nonproliferation treaty. (Applause.) Sometimes I wonder if people know what that is. Now I know you do. (Laughter.) I wish I could give you a citation. (Laughter.)

But we have other things to do. We must continue to help people who will work with us to safeguard nuclear materials and destroy those nuclear weapons so they don't wind up in the wrong hands. We have got to stop an entire new generation of nuclear weapons by signing a comprehensive test ban treaty this year. We have to ban chemical weapons by ratifying the chemical weapons convention now.

All of these things are focused on reducing the threat of weapons of mass destruction. But we also have to be prepared to defend ourselves in the extremely unlikely event that these preventive measures fail. That's why we're spending $3 billion a year on a strong, sensible, national missile defense program based on real threats and pragmatic responses. Our first priority is to defend against existing or near-term threats, like short- and medium- range missile attacks on our troops in the field or our allies. And we are, with upgraded patriot missiles, the Navy Lower and Upper Tier and the Army THAAD.

The possibility of a long-range missile attack on American soil by a rogue State is more than a decade away. To prevent it, we are committed to developing by the year 2000 and defensive system that could be deployed by 2003, well before the threat becomes real.

I know that there are those who disagree with this policy. They have a plan that Congress will take up this week that would force us to choose now a costly missile defense system that could be obsolete tomorrow. The Congressional Budget Office estimates that this cost will be between $30 and $60 billion.

Those who want us to deploy this system before we know the details and the dimensions of the threat we face I believe are wrong. I think we should not leap before we look. I believe this plan is misguided. It would waste money. It would weaken our defenses by taking money away from things we know we need right now. It would violate the arms control agreements that we have made and these agreements make us more secure. That is the wrong way to defend America. ...

The right way to defend America includes eliminating weapons of mass destruction, stopping this dread, and building a smart missile defense system. It also includes continuing the fight against the increasingly interconnected forces of destruction like terrorism, organized crime and drug trafficking. ..."

Speeches by US Defense Secretary

Speech on 'preventive defense'

Speech by Defence Secretary William Perry as prepared for delivery at Harvard University, 13 May 1996


"The security of the United States continues to require us to maintain strong military forces to deter and, if necessary, to defeat those who threaten our vital national interests - and we do. But today, the United States also has a unique historical opportunity, the opportunity to prevent the conditions for conflict and to help create the conditions for peace. Today, I want to talk to you about how America's security policy in the post-Cold War era requires us to take advantage of that opportunity: to make 'preventive defense' the first line of defense of America, with deterrence the second line of defense, and with military conflict the third and last resort. ...

...for the post Cold War world to be one of peace, and not conflict, America must lead the world in preventing the conditions for conflict and in creating the conditions for peace. In short, we must lead with a policy of preventive defense. So we have created an innovative set of programs in the Defense Department to do just that - some national, some international. They include: The Cooperative Threat Reduction program to reduce the nuclear weapon complex of the nuclear nations of the former Soviet Union; the counter-proliferation program to deal with the threat of the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction; the Framework Agreement to eliminate the nuclear weapons program of North Korea; and the Partnership for Peace to begin the integration of 27 nations of Eastern and Central Europe and Central Asia into the European security structure. ...

Nowhere is preventive defense more important than in countering the spread of nuclear, chemical and biological weapons. During the Cold War, the world lived with the nightmlare prospect of global nuclear holocaust, and the United States and the Soviet Union relied on deterrence, a balance of terror known as Mutual Assured Destruction, or MAD. Today, the threat of global nuclear holocaust is vastly reduced, but we face the new danger that weapons of mass destruction will fall into the hands of terrorist groups or rogue states. The threat of retaliation may not matter much to a terrorist group or a rogue nation - deterrence may not work with them. This new class of 'undeterrables' may be madder than MAD.

The aspiration of these rogue nations to obtain weapons of mass destruction is set against the backdrop of the disintegration of the former Soviet Union. This disintegration meant that instead of one nuclear empire, we were left with four new states, each with nuclear weapons on their soil: Russia, Kazakstan, Ukraine, and Belarus. The depressed economies of these nations created a buyer's market for weapons of mass destruction, including the materials, infrastructure, and work-force, and the unsettled political conditions made it potentially harder to protect those weapons and materials.

The increase in demand for nuclear weapons, and the potential increase in supply of weapons, material and know-how have required us to augment our Cold War strategy of deterrence with a post-Cold War strategy of prevention. The most effective way to prevent proliferation is to dismantle the arsenals that already exist. Fortunately, through our Cooperative Threat Reduction program with Russia and the other nuclear States of the former Soviet Union, we have the dismantlement well started. Through a defense program created by Senators Sam Nunn and Richard Lugar, we have helped Russia, Ukraine, Belarus and Kazakstan dismantle thousands of nuclear warheads and destroy hundreds of missiles, bombers and silos. This January, I personally detonated an SS-19 silo at Pervomaysk, which once had 700 nuclear warheads aimed at targets in the United States. By the end of the month, this missile field will have been converted to a wheat field. By the end of the year, Kazakstan, Ukraine and Belarus will be entirely free of nuclear weapons. We are also using Nunn-Lugar funds to help these nations safeguard and secure the weapons and materials to keep them out of the global marketplace. Under Project Sapphire, for example, we bought 600 kg of highly enriched uranium from Kazakstan to ensure that it did not fall into the hands of nuclear smugglers.

But preventing proliferation means more than just dismantling the Cold War nuclear arsenals. It also means leading the world in the right direction, as we did last year in gaining a consensus for the indefinite extension of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty. It means working to strengthen the Biological Weapons Convention and ratifying the Chemical Weapons Convention. It means taking the lead in a range of international export controls to limit the flow of goods and technologies that could be used to make weapons of mass destruction. During the Cold War, for example, we had the COCOM regime of export controls, designed to prevent the spread of dangerous technologies to the Soviet Union and Eastern Bloc. Today, we are creating the Wassenaar regime, set-up in cooperation with Russia, updated to fit today's technology and designed to prevent the spread of dangerous technologies to potential proliferators and rogue regimes.

Preventing proliferation also means leading the international community in opposing rogue nations with nuclear and/or chemical weapon aspirations, such as Iran and Libya. Economic sanctions and export controls have helped prevent Iran from acquiring nuclear weapons and they have significantly slowed Libya's efforts to put a chemical weapons production plant into operation.

Sometimes preventing proliferation means employing 'coercive diplomacy' - a combination of diplomacy and defense measures. In North Korea, for example, we used such a combination to stop that nation's nuclear weapons program. The diplomacy came from the threat by the United States and other nations in the region to impose economic sanctions if North Korea did not stop their program and the promise of assistance in the production of commercial power if they did. The defense came from our simultaneous beefing up of our military forces in the region. The result is that today, while North Korea continues to pose a conventional military threat on the peninsula, it is not mounting a nuclear threat.

Overall, the United States has been instrumental in eliminating or reversing nuclear weapon programs in six States since 1991: Ukraine, Belarus, Kazakstan, Iraq, North Korea and South Africa. These efforts have made both America and the world safer; and the gains to our national security have been dramatic, direct and tangible. I can think of few more satisfying moments in my life than when I turned the key to blow up that missile silo in Pervomaysk. ..."

Speech on ballistic missile defense

Statement by Secretary of Defense William Perry, as prepared for delivery to George Washington University, 25 April 1996


"I want to focus today on that third line of defense - ballistic missile defense - because there is great debate over this issue, and I want to clarify what the debate is about - and what it is not about. ...

So what is the threat? First, there is the here-and-now threat from short-range theater ballistic missiles - SCUD-type missiles. Second, there is an emerging threat from longer-range theater missiles. And third, there is a future threat that undeterrable rogue States will obtain ICBMs that can reach the United States. Each threat is different, so our response to each threat is different.

The first threat we are concerned about is that SCUD-type missiles will be used to attack our troops deployed overseas in battle theaters, or to terrorize our allies. This is not a hypothetical threat - it is real. Desert Storm was a wake-up call. Saddam Hussein had SCUDs. And he used them against our forces. He also used them in a terrorist mode, by firing SCUDs at population centers in Israel, which was not even a participant in the war. We do not know what Saddam would have done if his nuclear program had succeeded in producing nuclear weapons by then. We do know that he had chemical and biological warheads for the SCUDs, but chose not to use them. Certainly, he had very strong warning of the retaliation he would suffer if he did use chemical weapons.

Today, about 30 nations have SCUD missiles. Some of these nations also currently have chemical and biological weapons. Defending our troops against these theater missiles of mass destruction is a high priority of our military commanders. It is a high priority of the President, and it is a high priority of Congress. Indeed, Congress fully supports our defense program against this threat.

We already have theater missile defense systems deployed to a number of hot spots, such as the Middle East and the Korean peninsula. These defenses include upgraded Patriot missiles. But this technology is not good enough. Therefore, we have shifted additional funds to building and fielding better theater missile defense systems. For the '97 fiscal year, one-third of our overall budget for ballistic missile defenses is focused on defenses against this here-and-now missile threat. A new generation of more advanced Patriots and Navy missile defenses will soon be tested, and they are scheduled for delivery to Army units and Navy ships beginning in 1999. These new systems will seek and hit incoming missiles with more deadly aim. And they will have a much more effective kill mechanism that will minimize the dispersal of nuclear, chemical or biological agents on the ground.

But as we improve our defenses against the here-and-now missile threat, we must also gear up to defend against the second missile threat that is emerging on the horizon. Rogue nations evidently are beginning to develop more advanced theater ballistic missiles, which will pose a greater threat to our troops and allies than SCUD-type missiles. North Korea, for example, is developing a ballistic missile for its own military and for export markets such as the Middle East and North Africa. With a range of 1,000 kilometers, this missile will be able to fly farther than the SCUD. It would allow North Korea, for example, to strike Tokyo. It would also allow Libya to strike our allies in Europe. By the time these longer-range theater ballistic missiles hit the global market, more nations may have biological and chemical weapons - and some may have nuclear weapons. This threat is not here and now, but it is emerging, and we view it seriously.

Our response to this emerging threat is to develop the next generation of theater ballistic missile defenses. These systems will be able to protect areas over 10 times larger than the theater missile defenses we are building now, allowing us to protect an entire Army division or a metropolitan area.

As we develop these systems, however, there are two sets of decisions we are going to need to grapple with. The first decision involves priorities - how much and how fast. Some in Congress want us to speed up and spend more on defenses against future missile threats. In a world where financial priorities must be set, we believe the highest priority should be given to developing and deploying defenses against the missile threat that is here today.

The second set of decisions we need to grapple with as we develop broader theater missile defenses involves the Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty between the United States and Russia. The ABM Treaty prohibits each of us from building anti-ballistic missile systems to shield our nations from each other's nuclear arsenals. Through the years, this treaty has maintained stability by discouraging a race to build larger and better nuclear arsenals to overcome each other's defenses. In fact the treaty has encouraged reductions in our nuclear arsenals.

The ABM treaty does not prohibit America and Russia from building defenses to shield our troops from theater missiles. But the language of the treaty is not explicit about what is permitted. Therefore, we are working closely with Russia on an agreement to more clearly differentiate between theater missile defenses and those missile defenses prohibited by the ABM treaty.

But our bottom line is, we will not give up the right to defend our troops or our allies from attack by theater ballistic missiles.

As we field better systems to protect our troops and allies against theater ballistic missile attack, we must also prepare to protect our nation from the third missile threat. It is the prospect that rogue States will some day obtain strategic ballistic missiles - ICBMs - that can reach our shores. To defend our nation against this potential threat, we need to be ready to deploy a national missile defense. Today, we do not need a national missile defense system, because our nation is not now threatened by missiles of mass destruction. No rogue nation has ICBMs.

Only the established nuclear powers have ICBMs. And if these powers should ever pose a threat, our ability to retaliate with an overwhelming nuclear response will serve as a deterrent. Deterrence has protected us from the established nuclear arsenals for decades, and it will continue to protect us.

But while the United States is safe today from strategic missile attack, this picture could change in two ways. First, if rogue nations were to develop their own ICBMs. According to the US intelligence community, this threat is more than a decade away. However, it could come sooner if rogue nations get help from other nations in developing ICBMs. No nation seems so inclined, and we will continue to discourage such help - but we must be alert to this possibility. The second scenario is if an unauthorized or accidental launch of an ICBM occurs in Russia or China. Our intelligence considers this probability remote, and we are working to make it more remote through arms control and diplomacy.

Because of these two scenarios, we have a hedge strategy: to develop a national missile defense system that we could deploy if an ICBM threat to our country were to appear on the horizon. This national missile defense system under development would not be comparable to the system that was under development in the Strategic Defense Initiative - that is, it would not be capable of defending against thousands of warheads being launched at the United States. On the other hand, our system would be quite capable of defending against the much smaller and relatively unsophisticated ICBM threat that a rogue nation or a terrorist could mount any time in the foreseeable future. And it would be capable of shooting down an unauthorized or accidentally launched missile.

The system we are developing would include sensors in space to identify and track incoming missiles, and interceptor missiles and radars on the ground. Our plan is to develop elements of this system over the next three years. Then, at that point, if we were to see a rogue threat emerging, we could construct this system and have it on site in another three years - that is, by the year 2003. If, as we expect, we see no such threat emerging, we will continue developing and improving the technologies, all the while retaining the capability to have the system up and running within three years of a decision to deploy. That way, we will be ready and able to field the most advanced system possible to counter missile threats to our nation as fast as they can emerge.

How we defend the nation from ballistic missiles was the subject of great debate during the Cold War. The debate has begun again today. Critics of our program in Congress are supporting a bill sponsored by Senate Majority Leader Dole and House Speaker Gingrich. The Dole-Gingrich bill would replace our national missile defense plan with a plan of its own.

In many critical areas, our two plans see eye-to-eye. Both recognize the need to be capable of defending our nation against a potential rogue missile threat. And both would make it possible to deploy a system by 2003. The critical difference between our plans is timing.

The Dole-Gingrich bill says we must choose a system now and begin deploying it in three years, independent of how our threat assessment evolves. Our plan says, let's develop a system, assess the threat in three years, and make our deployment decision accordingly. Our choice between these two plans could be quite significant. Everyone should know what is at stake in the choice.

The first issue at stake is the chance to further reduce Cold War nuclear arsenals. Committing now to deploy a national missile defense system, as called for in the Dole-Gingrich bill, would almost certainly put at risk Russia's full implementation of the START I treaty, and ratification and implementation of the START II treaty. In other words, the Dole-Gingrich bill could jeopardize the elimination of an additional 3200 former Soviet nuclear warheads. No ballistic missile defense offers our country better protection than the elimination of 3200 nuclear warheads. In this case, the choice is between defending against a threat that does not exist, versus eliminating a threat that does exist.

Additionally, committing right now to deploy a system could require the United States to amend or abrogate the ABM Treaty with Russia. This is unnecessary without a real threat on the horizon. Only if and when we decide to deploy a national missile defense would we need to decide whether we need amendments to the ABM Treaty.

The second issue at stake is the effectiveness of the national defense system we deploy. Choosing a system now will limit our options to build a better system that is better matched to the threat. In this case, the choice is between building an advanced system to defeat an actual threat, versus a less capable system to defeat a hypothetical threat. ...

The choices we make in missile defense have far reaching implications. I believe this Administration has made the right choices to protect us in the post-Cold War nuclear age. We work to prevent threats from endangering us. We maintain strong forces, and the strong will to use force, to deter attack. We maintain missile defenses that can defeat a missile attack against our deployed troops; we are focused on getting better theater missile defenses into the field as soon as possible. And we have a robust and flexible program to develop a national missile defense against a rogue ICBM threat to our nation, if such a threat emerges in the future. Overall, our ballistic missile defense program strikes the right balance, with an emphasis on the threat that is here and now. ..."

Statement on US chemical weapons destruction

'Interim assessment of chemical demilitarization program', Department of Defense Press Release, 3 May 1996

Full text

"The Department of Defense released today an interim report on the status of the Chemical Stockpile Disposal Program indicating that the CDSP is now into its operational phase. The report assesses the current status of the chemical stockpile demilitarization program, including the results of the Army's analysis of the physical and chemical integrity of the stockpile and implications for the chemical demilitarization program, and providing recommendations for revisions to the program that have been included in the budget request of the Department of Defense for fiscal year 1997.

The US stockpile consists of some 30,000 tons of chemical weapons - about 3.3 million individual items, located at eight sites in the US and one site on Johnston Atoll in the Pacific Ocean. Currently the Johnston Atoll incineration facility is in full operation and has already destroyed more than two million pounds of chemical weapons. A second site, at Tooele Army Depot, Utah, where more than 40 percent of the chemical weapons stockpile is maintained, is set to begin incineration operations this summer. Construction of similar facilities at Anniston, Alabama, Umatilla, Oregon, and Pine Bluff, Arkansas, are scheduled to begin later this year.

The National Research Council of the National Academy of Sciences has determined that incineration is a safe and effective method of destroying chemical weapons. The NRC has also concluded that indefinite storage of the chemical weapons stockpile presents greater risk then getting on with the destruction effort, using the baseline incineration technology developed by the Army.

In parallel with implementation of its baseline technology, the Army is aggressively assessing two neutralization-based technologies which will provide alternatives to the incineration process. Three additional technologies have been identified from recommendations from US industry. All five technologies are now being evaluated by the NRC. A decision on whether to proceed with a pilot scale program with one or more of these technologies is expected to be made by the Department of Defense later this year.

Cost of the CDSP, over the 16 years of its anticipated life cycle, is estimated to be $12.4 billion. Major factors contributing to the growth of this cost have been changing environmental permit requirements, legislative requirements, and modifications resulting from program experiences. The Army continues to pursue several cost reduction initiatives which will not jeopardize the health and safety of the work force or the public and which will protect the environment. The results of this ongoing cost reduction study will be provided to Congress with the Defense Department budget request for fiscal year 1998."

The Cairo Declaration on the African Nuclear-Weapon-Free Zone

The Cairo Declaration, Adopted on the occasion of the Signature of the African Nuclear-Weapon-Free Zone Treaty (the Treaty of Pelindaba), Cairo, 11 April 1996

The Declaration was submitted as a CD document (CD/1390) by Egypt on 16 April 1996 - see Geneva Update.

Full text

"The African States signatories of the African Nuclear-Weapon-Free Zone Treaty (the Treaty of Pelindaba), meeting in Cairo, Egypt, on 11 April, 1996,

Recalling the Declaration on the Denuclearization of Africa adopted by the Assembly of Heads of State and Government of the Organization of African Unity at its first ordinary session held in Cairo in 1964,

Recalling also the adoption by the Assembly of Heads of State and Government of the Organization of African Unity at its thirty- first ordinary session, held at Addis Ababa from 26 to 28 June 1995, of the final text of the Treaty,

Recalling further United Nations General Assembly resolution 50/78 of 12 December 1995, by which the Assembly welcomed the Adoption by the African leaders of the final text of the Treaty,

Recognizing the valuable contribution that the establishment of nuclear-weapon-free zones in Latin America and the Caribbean, South Pacific and South East Asia have made to the process of nuclear non-proliferation,

Stressing the importance of promoting regional and international development of Nuclear Energy for peaceful purposes in the interest of sustainable social and economic development of the African Continent,

Solemnly declare that the signing of the Treaty further consolidates global efforts towards the non-proliferation of nuclear weapons including the objectives of the Treaty on the Non- Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT) and is a highly significant contribution to the enhancement of international peace and security;

Invite the African States to ratify the Treaty as soon as possible so that it can enter into force without delay;

Call upon the Nuclear-Weapon States as well as the States contemplated in Protocol III to sign and ratify the relevant Protocols to the Treaty as soon as possible;

Emphasize that the establishment of nuclear-weapon-free zones, especially in regions of tension, such as the Middle East, on the basis of arrangements freely arrived at among the States of the region concerned, enhances global and regional peace and security;

Call upon all those States who have not yet done so to adhere to the NPT;

Call upon the Nuclear-Weapon States to actively pursue the goal of a nuclear-weapon-free world as embodied in article VI of the NPT, through the urgent negotiation of agreements with effective measures of verification towards the complete elimination of nuclear weapons at the earliest possible time;

Decide that the first session of the Conference of the States Parties to the Treaty shall be held not later than one year after its entry into force, and endorse the establishment of the headquarters of the African Commission on Nuclear Energy in South Africa;

Request the Secretary-General of the United Nations, in accordance with resolution 50/78, adopted by the United Nations General Assembly on 12 December 1995, to provide the necessary assistance in 1996 in order to achieve the aims of the present declaration."

Editor's note - Negative Security Assurances

Apparent and actual undertakings

The following note is intended to assist in clarifying the currently extremely confused situation concerning the scope of the negative security assurances - assurances not to use or threaten to use nuclear weapons against non-nuclear-weapon States - on offer under the terms of both the Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) and the various regional nuclear-weapon-free zones (NWFZs), and in particular the recently signed African NWFZ.

Controversy over the issue has arisen following claims by senior US officials, including the Defense Secretary, William Perry (see last issue), that the US would have the right to use or threaten to use nuclear weapons against Libya if Libya used chemical weapons against it.

The following interpretation, if correct, suggests that the US has - along with France, Russia and the UK - carefully ensured that it does have such a right. If so, the issue then becomes one not of US inconsistency or deceit, but the value of the negative security assurances as currently constituted, hedged as they are not only with well-known conditions but, it would seem, lesser-known pre- conditions.

The apparent contradiction

The common formula of the 'P4' - France, Russia, the UK and US (China offers unequivocal assurances) - was set out on 6 April in the form of four virtually identical national statements. The US, for example, reaffirmed that -

"it will not use nuclear weapons against non-nuclear-weapon States Parties to the Treaty [the NPT] except in the case of an invasion or any other attack on the United States, its territories, its armed forces or other troops, its allies, or on a State towards which it has a security commitment, carried out or sustained by such a non-nuclear-weapon State in association or alliance with a nuclear-weapon State."

The April 1996 African NWFZ, or Pelindaba Treaty, appears to represent a significant advance on this formulation. Under Protocol I, Article 1, the nuclear-weapon States undertake simply "not to use or threaten to use a nuclear explosive device against [a]ny party to the Treaty".

Apparently, then, it would be inconsistent, under either the NPT or Pelindaba formulation, for the US to claim it has the right to reserve the option to counter or threaten to counter with nuclear weapons a chemical weapons attack by Libya - a non-nuclear-weapon State Party to both the NPT and Pelindaba Treaty, acting alone.

However, it would appear, on the basis of the evidence and interpretation set out below, that in the estimation of the P4 this option is made available by the inclusion of a further, general requirement which would have to be met before an NPT State, or State Party to any NWFZ, was eligible for coverage by any assurance.

In addition, it would seem reasonable to conclude that the P4 have no intention of committing themselves to the unequivocal assurances contained in the Pelindaba Treaty - even though France, the UK and US have already signed the Protocols, and Russia has said it hopes to.

Actual undertakings under the NPT

The additional, general requirement is that a non-nuclear-weapon State Party does not acquire any weapons of mass destruction. This was spelled out in the preamble to the 6 April undertakings: "universal adherence to and compliance with international conventions and treaties seeking to prevent the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction is a cornerstone of global security." The US text goes on: "bearing the above considerations in mind, the President declares the following...". Then follows the formula quoted above. These 'considerations', then, it seems - at least in the view of the P4 - are actually pre-conditions which have to be satisfied in order for the assurance to apply.

It will be noted that under the requirement, not only is compliance with international legal bars to the acquisition of weapons of mass destruction (the NPT, the Biological and Chemical Weapons Conventions, etc) necessary; signature and ratification of such Treaties is also compulsory. For example, if Libya did not become party to the Chemical Weapons Convention (CWC), it would not qualify for any assurance whatsoever. Thus, when the US talks about using nuclear weapons in response to a chemical weapons attack by Libya or a State in a similar position, it is not making statements at variance with the undertakings it has given. It is activating an over-ride mechanism inserted into those undertakings in order to cover precisely such a scenario.

The NWFZ opt-out

The P4 are intent on ensuring that the unequivocal assurance in the Pelindaba Protocol text only applies subject to certain terms and conditions: in other words, that it does not constitute an advance on the NPT assurances.

For example, in the following note - kindly provided by the Foreign & Commonwealth Office* - appended by the British Government to its signature to the Pelindaba Protocols, the UK stipulates that it "will not be bound by their undertaking under Article 1 of Protocol I":

"...in the case of an invasion or any other attack on the United Kingdom, its dependent territories, its armed forces or other troops, its allies or a State towards which it has a security commitment, carried out or sustained by a party to the Treaty in association or alliance with a Nuclear-Weapon State."

France and the US are believed to have entered an identical statement - and France, the UK and US are also thought to have repeated the need for all States Parties to abide by the general requirement discussed above. In the words of the UK statement: "universal adherence to and compliance with international agreements seeking to prevent the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction are vital to the maintenance of world security."

Russia can be expected to follow suit if and when it accedes.

News Review

Review compiled from reports appearing between 15 April and 15 May. The Review is an account of news reports and does not seek to put forward or reflect the views or claims of Dfax.

G-8 Nuclear Safety Summit

This review provides a brief summary of reaction to the 19-20 April 'G-8' (Group of 7 leading industrialised nations plus Russia) Summit in Moscow, devoted to issues of nuclear safety and security. The Summit adopted a general communique - essentially just stressing the importance of the issue - and separate statements, on nuclear smuggling, a CTBT, and Ukraine. See last issue and Documents and Sources for extensive background and details.

After the signing of the general communique, President Yeltsin glowed (20 April):

"We held these discussions not as opponents but as friends, inasmuch as the atom did not become something that divided, but united, our countries."

The Summit was co-Chaired by President Yeltsin and France's President Chirac. Chirac (20 April) characterised the discussions as "extremely positive", and expressed confidence that they represented "an important step in the direction of better security for the world of tomorrow." Chirac warned, however, that in one key area - making nuclear power plants safe - much needed to be done, and the situation remained grave:

"Dangerous installations have not been closed, certain reactors which are considered dangerous have been re-started... Cooperation with Ukraine over the closure of Chernobyl...is still the subject of a number of misunderstandings..."

Related developments

US-Russia talks

The 21 April mini-summit of Presidents Clinton and Yeltsin generated almost as much media interest and coverage as the Summit proper. Both leaders sounded upbeat afterwards (see last issue). Perhaps the most significant issue between the two States is their search for a common interpretation of the Anti-Ballistic Missile (ABM) Treaty. Clinton was particularly upbeat about the discussions on the issue:

"We...made important progress in distinguishing between anti- ballistic missile systems that are limited by the ABM Treaty and theatre missile defences which are not... That's a significant advance for both countries in resolving a real, as opposed to an imagined, security problem."

However, it was clear there was at least one contentious issue - predictably, NATO expansion. According to President Yeltsin, speaking at a press conference with Clinton, said Russia hoped that "a two-way agreement might be worked out. In our view, it might include a provision that no country may be accepted without Russia's agreement." While he had been given no such guarantee ("our differences are well known...from my point of view there have been no changes," according to Clinton), he did, he said, receive a more modest assurance:

"NATO expansion will not be speeded up, at our request, for some time. President Clinton promised to use his influence on his allies on this..."

Yeltsin also revealed that the CFE Treaty had been discussed "at my request", adding: "President Clinton reviewed the issue, the CFE flank limits, with his advisors and decided that temporarily we would be given an opportunity to carry out some movement of forces."

The day before the mini-summit, President Clinton repeated his criticism of Russia's decision to assist Iran's civil nuclear programme: "I think it's a bad idea, because...we believe they're trying to develop a nuclear [weapons] programme, not withstanding what they may say to the contrary."

Russia pledge to Japan on nuclear waste

On 19 April, it was reported that Japan's Prime Minister, Ryutaro Hashimoto, had been given an assurance by President Yeltsin that Russia would not dump nuclear waste at sea. Such waste was last dumped in the Sea of Japan in October 1993 - after which signatories to the London Convention on nuclear waste disposal at sea drew up an annex designed to prevent any re-occurrence. Russia is a signatory to the Convention, but refused to agree formally with the annex, saying only it would voluntarily abide by its terms. Japanese officials were reportedly expressing confidence on 19 April that Russia would sign the annex by the end of the year.

Plans proceeding for new Russian plutonium storage site

On 15 May, Russia's First Deputy Prime Minister, Oleg Soskovets, spoke to reporters about a US-Russia project to build a major facility for storing weapons-grade plutonium. The site will be added to an existing nuclear reprocessing plant at Mayak, in Chelyabinsk. Soskovets, visiting Chelyabinsk, said that the total cost of the facility was expected to be $150 million, to be borne equally by the US and Russia. He added that the US has pledged $25 million during 1996. Soskovets said that at least $65 million would be needed before the year's end, and apparently suggested that Russian Ministries would have to find more funds that they had been expecting.

The Deputy Prime Minister stated that it was hoped to complete the facility in four years; after which it will be expected to become home to 40% of Russia's military plutonium stocks. Some military plutonium is already stored at Mayak, though it was not clear from reports what percentage of the current total. There are two other storage sites, at Tomsk and Krasnoyarsk.

New agreement on plutonium control on the way?

On 15 April, it was reported that progress was being made on an attempt by nine States - the five nuclear-weapon States plus Belgium, Germany, Japan and Switzerland - to draw up guidelines concerning the handling and control of plutonium. The particular priority, apparently, is to ensure that plutonium made available during the dismantling of nuclear weapons is not diverted back to military use. Proposals on guidelines for annual public declarations of plutonium stocks are also being considered.

The discussions, held in Vienna and also attended by officials from the IAEA and its European equivalent agency Euratom, commenced last year.

It was reported on 12 May that Japan's Prime Minister Hashimoto is intending to seek agreement at the June meeting of the G-7 in Lyons, France, on what reports described as a "framework" to ban the production of weapons-grade plutonium. However, it is not clear whether the proposal is for a ban on the production of all such material, or only that intended for military use. A 'cut-off' of such militarily-designation plutonium is due to be negotiated at the CD, probably once the CTBT talks have concluded.

Missile defence developments


There seems to be new confidence that the US and Russia are nearing agreement on definitions of theatre missile defence (TMD) systems permissible under the Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty, signed in 1972 and designed to preclude large-scale defences against strategic ballistic missiles. The Republican Congress, however, is worried that the apparently-near agreement will unreasonably constrain US TMD plans and programmes. There is also considerable support in the Congress for national missile defence (NMD) systems against ballistic missiles of various ranges. A US commitment to such NMD would be highly likely to lead to the collapse of the Treaty -rendering inconceivable, in turn, Russian ratification of the second Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (START II) - already stalled in part over concern about US extant and potential missile defence plans.

Having lost a stand-off with the President over the Financial Year (FY) 1996 Defense Authorization Act - which the President finally vetoed in protest at its declared intention of establishing a 'multi-site' NMD by 2003 - Congress is working hard to word the FY97 Act more effectively. It is also promoting a strongly pro-NMD 'Defend America Act'. One of the would-be Act's staunchest supporters is Robert Dole, the likely Republican candidate in the November Presidential Election.

Meanwhile, a considerably more modest endeavour - the Medium Extended Air Defense System (MEADS) Project between the US, France, Italy and Germany - suffered a setback of some seriousness with France's withdrawal just before the signing of a Statement of Intent. The now-trilateral project continues.

In a more politically charged move, the US and Israel have signed a far-reaching agreement on missile defence co-operation.

TMD and the ABM Treaty

The search for agreement has been taking place in the Treaty's Standing Consultative Committee (SCC), meeting in Geneva. After their 21 April mini-summit, Presidents Clinton and Yeltsin expressed confidence that the SCC would conclude an accord before too long. According to President Yeltsin: "We now have rather good schedules on what Russia has to do, what Russia has to do by October of this year." Subsequent reports, however, spoke of an agreement being confirmed before then, perhaps by the early Summer.

On 25 April, Assistant Secretary of Defense Ashton Carter outlined to reporters what he hoped and expected the breakthrough agreement would say. According to accounts of his presentation, it would permit the deployment of TMD interceptor systems with a maximum velocity of three kilometres per second. A subsequent agreement on systems with a higher velocity would have to be sought, he explained. Russia had reportedly been insisting that an overall agreement be reached before any programmes were allowed to proceed.

US 'lower-velocity' TMD programmes, as defined by a 3 kilometres- per-second speed limit, are: MEADS; the Army's Patriot PAC-3 missiles; and the Navy's Theatre High Area Altitude Defense (THAAD) system. US 'higher-velocity' systems include the Navy's Theater-Wide Upper Tier.

Carter said he would be delighted if such an agreement was confirmed:

"This would be a very good agreement because it gives Russian agreement to our view that all of our programs can, and are, going to go forward..."

The Defend America Act and The FY97 Defense Authorisation Act

In late April and early May, two key Congressional Committees approved the 'Defend America Act 1996' - legislation aimed at establishing an ambitious NMD programme. On 23 April, the House of Representatives National Security Committee gave its approval. A full debate in the House was expected to start during the week beginning 13 May. In the Senate, the Armed Services Committee gave its approval on 1 May. It was not clear from reports when the full Senate debate would start.

The Act is similar to the NMD programme included in the FY96 Defense Authorization Act vetoed by President Clinton. By devoting a separate Act to NMD, the Republicans clearly hope to avoid the issue taking the entire Defense Authorization process hostage again. However, the FY97 Defense Authorization Act being drawn up by Congress - and adopted by the House of Representatives, by 273 votes to 153, on 15 May - also includes plans for significant increases in spending on NMD (a $350 million 'top-up' of the $516 million being asked for by the Administration), and may thus end up incurring a repeat veto. This prospect was raised by White House spokesperson Michael McCurry on 13 May. Such a veto, he said, would be justified because the Authorization "commits ourselves to spending tens of billions of dollars for a national ballistic missile defense that may be unnecessary." The House- approved Authorization Act would also specify its own understanding of deployment permissible under the ABM Treaty: all systems would be permitted as long as they were not designed to intercept - and were not tested against - strategic ballistic missiles, defined as missiles with a range of over 3,500 kilometres or a velocity faster than 5 kilometres per second.

On 8 May, National Security Council member Robert Bell strongly criticised the Defend America Act, predicting it would risk destroying not just the ABM Treaty but the great achievement of the START Treaties and thus "forfeit what otherwise would be a two- thirds reduction in Russia's strategic nuclear arsenal." Briefing journalists, Bell was particularly critical of three components of the Republican's NMD vision: space-based lasers (SBLs), which he said would cost tens of billions of dollars, were unproven and had no suitable launch-vehicle; space-based kinetic-kill vehicles - the new 'brilliant pebbles' of the Reagan-Bush Strategic Defense Initiative (SDI) programme, which Bell said would require a fantastic investment with no way of predicting utility or applicability; and sea-based anti-ballistic missiles, which the Navy does not think it needs, and which would require the development and deployment of 'battle management' satellites prohibited under the ABM Treaty. Bell added that the Act implied even greater ambitions, with some language about 'larger' threats being interpreted by him as "code for a return to the original Reagan-era 'astrodome' SDI concept for stopping even an all-out Russian nuclear strike."

On 3 May, the Research & Development Subcommittee of the House of Representatives National Security Committee (HNSC) decided on an additional $914 million of funding for the Ballistic Missile Defense Organization's (BMDO) FY97 budget request of $2.8 billion. The move follows testimony to the subcommittee by BMDO Director Lt. Gen Malcolm O'Neill, who informed the panel that - in order to satisfy the requirements of the FY96 Defense Authorization Act - his organization would need an additional $935 million in FY97, and an additional $1.3 billion for each of the years to 2001.

Defend Asia-Pacific?

In a speech in Washington on 9 May, shortly before resigning his seat in the Senate to concentrate on his Presidential campaign, Robert Dole set out his vision of an Asia-Pacific network of defences, in which defences against ballistic missiles would play a prominent part:

"With American leadership and American know-how we can create a Pacific Democracy Defense Network that provides protection for people and territory from the Aleutians to Australia... It is time for the US to work with Japan and to work with Korea as well as other Asian allies on the development, testing and deployment of ballistic missile defenses... Japan and South Korea face a clear and present danger from ballistic missiles, and should be our top priority..."

Earlier, on 26 April, Dole had yet again attacked Clinton for failing to take ballistic missile defence seriously:

"The fact is, we can't destroy a single missile. That's not because America is lacking the technical know-how... It's because America is lacking the Presidential leadership to get it done. ... Some 25 countries are acquiring ballistic missiles that can be used to attack the United States, our troops or our allies... The North Koreans are developing a ballistic missile which will threaten Alaska or Hawaii in the not-so-distant future."

Editor's note: the official US threat assessment - the form of a National Intelligence Estimate (NIE) produced earlier this year (see issue No. 3, March 1996) - is very different. The NIE assessment was published in The Washington Post on 15 May. It states bluntly: "No country, other than the major declared nuclear powers, will develop or otherwise acquire a ballistic missile in the next 15 years that could threaten the contiguous 48 States and China." Concerning the North Korean threat to Alaska and Hawaii, the NIE states:

"Among Third World countries hostile to the United States, North Korea has the most advanced ballistic missile program. One of its missiles in development, the Taepo-Dong 2, is assessed to have a range of 4,000-6,000 kilometres. A 6,000-kilometre range would be sufficient to strike portions of Alaska and the far Western portion of the Hawaiian Island chain (more than 1,000 kilometres West of Honolulu)."


The signing of a Statement of Intent by the US, France, Italy and Germany to proceed with the MEADS programme, scheduled for 15 April in Brussels, was postponed when it became clear that France intended to withdraw. France was reportedly given a day's extension (until the end of 16 April) to reconsider its decision, at which point France officially confirmed that it was unwilling to sign. While France made clear it was not ruling out the possibility of re-joining, it was apparently given only one month to come back in or remain excluded.

On 22 April, a Statement of Intent was signed by the US, Italy and Germany. The same day, the Italian and German defence-procurement chiefs - General Franco Angioni and Martin Guddat - were reported to have signed a separate understanding giving (confidential) details of each State's financial contributions to the project, revised upwards following France's withdrawal. The US burden may also be increased. The original ratio of contributions is reported to have been: US, 50%, France and Germany 20%, Italy 10%. On 22 April, the Director of the US Ballistic Missile Defense Organisation (BMDO), Lt. Gen Malcolm O'Neill reportedly suggested the following revision: US, 60%, Germany, 25%, Italy, 15%.

Financial considerations seem to have at the root of France's dramatically timed decision. The initial phase of MEADS alone is expected to cost $2 billion, with estimates of overall expenditure running at $40 billion over some 15 years.

The hastily revised Statement of Intent is said to read:

"Having reflected on the situation, Italy, Germany and the United States have reaffirmed their interest in MEADS and realized the need to reconsider the program structure and therefore plan to negotiate a new trilateral MOU [Memorandum of Understanding]..."

Regarding the possibility of French re-entry into the programme, the Statement of Intent cautioned that "it will have to be decided by the three participants at what time and under which conditions the accession will be possible without a major disruption to the program."

Editor's note: on 23 April, the US Department of Defense issued the following press release on the signing of the Statement of Intent.

"The Ministries of Defense of Germany and Italy and the US Department of Defense yesterday signed a Statement of Intent to negotiate a trilateral Memorandum of Understanding for the project definition and validation [PDV] phase of the Medium Extended Air Defense System (MEADS).

The MEADS Program will develop an advanced air and missile defense system that will provide protection for manoeuvring forces and critical assets from short- to medium-range tactical ballistic missiles, cruise missiles, unmanned aerial vehicles and manned aircraft. It will be employed either in combination with other systems as part of an integrated air defense or individually in stand-alone operations.

The Ministries of Defense of France, Germany and Italy and the US Department of Defense had already signed a Statement of Intent on 20 February, 1995 for the development and procurement of MEADS.

Although having prepared a quadrilateral MOU concerning a joint PDV phase as the first program phase, and a Charter concerning the program organization, the French Ministry of Defense was not in a position to sign the MOU as originally planned. The French have not made a final decision on their participation.

Though France may decide at a later date to participate in the MEADS program, the three other countries have reaffirmed their requirements for the system, and hope the PDV phase schedule can be kept. Until the trilateral MOU is signed, France may participate on the basis of the previously negotiated quadrilateral MOU."

US-Israel accord

The US and Israel signed a missile defence cooperation agreement in Washington on 28 April. The accord was signed by Israel's Prime Minister, Shimon Peres, and US Defense Secretary William Perry. The main points are:

* Confirmation and consolidation of a programme to develop the Arrow anti-ballistic missile system. Deployment is said to be scheduled for 1998. The programme is said to be expected to cost around $1.5 billion, with the US expected to contribute over $500 million.

* Development of the Nautilus laser weapon will be intensified. Nautilus is being designed to destroy incoming short-range missiles. The system is scheduled to be ready for full testing in late 1997.

* Agreement on the provision of US 'real-time' satellite images to alert Israel to any attack: "warning will be given in a matter of seconds of a missile launch," in the words of Secretary Perry on 28 April.

* Establishment of a joint working group to review progress and consider further measures. The senior US official is expected to be Under-Secretary for Defense Policy Walter Slocombe.

US-Japan statement

On 17 April, President Clinton and Prime Minister Hashimoto issued a joint statement stressing the importance of missile defence cooperation between the two States:

"The two governments recognised that the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction and their means of delivery have important implications for their common security. They will work together to prevent proliferation and will continue to cooperate in the ongoing study [by the two countries] on ballistic missile defence."

Japan and the US signed a Memorandum of Understanding on the issue on 23 February (see issue No. 3, March 1996).

Yeltsin holds CTB meeting with China

In Beijing on 25 April, President Yeltsin met President Jiang Zemin to discuss a range of arms control and security issues, most prominently the scope of a CTBT. At the 19-20 April Moscow Summit, Russia came into line with the other nuclear-weapon States in backing a formula tabled by Australia and simply calling for a ban on all nuclear explosions - the so-called 'zero yield' or 'zero- option' test ban. China disagrees with this formula, advocating the retention of an option to conduct 'peaceful nuclear explosions'. Speaking at a press conference with President Clinton on 21 April, Yeltsin promised to try and persuade China to back the Australian formula.

Speaking after meeting Zemin, Yeltsin implied progress, but fell short of announcing it: "We have agreed here that China will follow the decisions adopted at [the] G-8 summit on nuclear safety to hold talks and reach an agreement on a complete end to nuclear tests this year..." "I have carried out my promise to President Clinton," Yeltsin added.

However, also speaking on 25 April, a spokesperson from China's Foreign Ministry, Shen Guofang, repeated China's view that "we believe the door on peaceful explosions should not be closed at least for now." He was reported to have claimed that the two Presidents did not discuss the zero-option. At a briefing on 23 April, Shen had said: "We believe nuclear explosions are one of the ways mankind makes peaceful use of nuclear energy."

A joint communique shed no light on the matter, saying only that "both sides will make efforts and cooperate with other countries for an early conclusion of CTBT."

Holum and Ledogar opine and prophesIE on test ban

On 24 April, two senior US arms control officials - Stephen Ledogar, Ambassador to the CD, and John Holum, Director of the Arms Control and Disarmament Agency (ACDA) - gave frank opinions about the merits of, and prospects for, a CTBT. John Holum was speaking on Voice of America radio; Stephen Ledogar was attending a UN disarmament conference in New York.

Mr Holum stressed the merits of a test ban, both as a non- proliferation and a disarmament measure. He insisted that a ban would make it effectively impossible for the nuclear-weapon States to develop new weapons with confidence: "the first countries to be controlled by a Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty are the nuclear- weapon States." Given this, Mr Holum argued, it was nonsense to suggest that the CTBT was a measure discriminating in favour of the nuclear-weapon States. The test was "an important step on the road to the ultimate elimination of nuclear weapons, which, of course, is the objective...we all share." Referring to China's "troublesome" position that 'peaceful nuclear explosions' should be permitted under a ban, Holum said it was clear that "you can always gain weapons design information any time you set off a nuclear explosion."

Ambassador Ledogar's comments were gloomy in the extreme, and speak for themselves:

"I wish I had better news but I'm afraid the negotiations...are not going well... There are major problems that remain on every major issue and we're running out of time. The window of opportunity to accomplish this long-sought objective could close very suddenly...

We're really down to the wire, but unfortunately some of the delegations in Geneva have yet to make their first gesture of flexibility. Some are even adding on requirements to this treaty text that are far beyond the purview of the task we agreed upon... This negotiation cannot bear the burden of whole new commitments to do things in the field of disarmament... This is not a nuclear disarmament treaty, though it is a step in the overall programme for nuclear disarmament. This treaty is not a nuclear arms reduction effort..."

Ledogar went on to criticise US tactics and approach, which he conceded to be partly to blame for "the sorry state of affairs":

"Washington has projected such excessive enthusiasm that we sometimes sounded as though we were ready to sign any treaty on testing... US goodwill in this negotiation is being taken for granted. The goodwill and flexibility of others who have been working hard for a fair and equitable result are also being ignored or abused."

The Ambassador also identified the issue of the information considered necessary to trigger an 'on-site inspection' (see Geneva Update) as being perhaps the most important of all: "For the United States the answer to that will determine whether we agree to participation in this treaty or not."

US decides against China sanctions

On 10 May, after deliberations dating back to late February, the US announced it would not be imposing sanctions against China over an alleged sale of nuclear-weapons related technology (magnet rings for uranium-enriching gas centrifuges) to Pakistan. In summary, the US appears to accept that the transfer did occur, but unbeknownst to the Chinese government. Furthermore, the US is claiming to have extracted guarantees from China that it will seek to ensure that no such transfer takes place again. See Documents and Sources for the State Department statement and briefing.

On 11 May, China's Foreign Ministry issued a statement - as predicted by the US the day before - on the development. It read:

"China pursues the policy of not endorsing, encouraging or engaging in the proliferation of nuclear weapons, or assisting other countries in developing such weapons...

The nuclear cooperation between China and the countries concerned is exclusively for peaceful purposes. China will not provide assistance to unsafeguarded nuclear facilities..."

On 14 May, State Department spokesperson Nicholas Burns described this commitment to "not provide assistance to unsafeguarded nuclear facilities" as "new and significant", claiming: "It goes well beyond prior Chinese commitments, because it accepts responsibility not only to control nuclear items specifically listed on the international trigger list but also dual-use items and other forms of assistance to unsafeguarded nuclear facilities. It is an important step forward..." China's statement, however, referred only to existing obligations: "As a State Party to the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons, China strictly observes its obligations under the treaty..."

Burns' remarks were part of a stinging rebuttal of a story appearing that day in The Washington Post claiming that the deal was stitched up purely for public relations purposes. Burns countered:

"The article...talks about winks and nods and smiles. These were express, clear assurances at the most senior level of the Chinese Government to...Secretary of State [Christopher]..."

Christopher discussed the issue at length with his counterpart Qian Qichen in The Hague on 19 April. On 15 May, Christopher said of that meeting:

"He told me that the commitment they took not to assist unsafeguarded facilities would cover any ring-magnet transaction in the future. So we have not only their [11 May] agreement with our statement, but have that personal assurance from him."

Sanctions remain against Iraq as new pressures are added

On 6 May, the Security Council voted unanimously to maintain sanctions against Iraq. The decision - the sanctions require Security Council re-approval every 60 days - came on the heels of the latest gloomy report (11 April - see last issue) from the UN's Special Commission (UNSCOM) seeking to verify the complete lifting of the threat - extant and likely - posed by Iraq's alleged programmes to acquire weapons of mass destruction and their means of delivery.

With no lifting of the sanctions in sight, Iraq and the UN have been trying to agree emergency sales of oil by Iraq to raise funds for the purchase of desperately needed humanitarian supplies, particularly medicines. On 7 May, Iraq's chief negotiator, Abdel Amir al-Anbari, said agreement, near in early April, had been thwarted by late and significant new conditions imposed by the UK and US. Al-Anbari said the two States had "crushed" the deal. He complained bitterly: "We don't recognise any new conditions... Nobody has the moral [or] political authority to put aside all the things that [have] been achieved in order to impose their arbitrary will." [Editor's note: agreement was finally reached on 20 May - see next issue.]

Despite the gloom and stalemate, some progress was reported. Speaking in Baghdad on 19 April, the Chair of UNSCOM, Rolf Ekeus, announced that he had agreed a "plan of action" for achieving full compliance. The agreement, which recognised the need to "accelerate" UNSCOM's investigations, was reached with Iraq's Deputy Prime Minister, Tariq Aziz, and Oil Minister, Amer Mohammed al-Rashid. Ekeus was far from confident, however, of a final breakthrough: "From our side, we tried to focus on the future. I was not totally satisfied. I felt there were differences of opinion." Ekeus elaborated:

"One of the main problems is our accessibility to some of the sites... in order that the Commission does its job accurately and completely it is essential that we are given access to wherever we want...whenever we want."

On 22 April, a 15-member UNSCOM team - led by American John Larrabee - arrived in Baghdad charged with identifying and 'tagging' all Iraqi missiles with a range of 150 kilometres or less. Iraq is not permitted to produce missiles of greater range, and the tagging is designed to alert UNSCOM to any attempt to illicitly extend the range of the missiles left it.

Ebullient BJP strident on nuclear policy

The Indian General Election has resulted in a Bharatiya Janata Party (Indian People's Party - BJP) government. BJP leader Atal Behari Vajpayee was sworn in as Prime Minister on 16 May. The BJP, routinely described as a 'Hindu nationalist' party, is in favour of a much more overt nuclear weapons stance and policy than previous Indian administrations. Speaking on 15 May, Vajpayee insisted:

"No country should have nuclear weapons. Those with nuclear weapons should listen to us... If nuclear bombs get piled up in some countries, then we will take whatever measures [are] necessary for our defence..."

More explicitly, in a televised election broadcast on 20 April, Vajpayee stated:

"My government will deploy both the Privthi and Agni range of missiles. India shall not remain vulnerable to external aggression... The BJP stands committed to a nuclear-free world but it rejects the very concept of nuclear apartheid. In fact, my government will exercise the option to induct nuclear weapons as a deterrent..."

The BJP's election manifesto, published on 7 April, strongly supports the outgoing Congress Party government's attempts to link the CTBT with firm and detailed disarmament commitments. The manifesto calls for "a simultaneous agreement for a time-bound global elimination of nuclear weapons in their entirety." Such a stance reportedly commands support in many other parties.

Reacting with predictable gloom to the prospect of an Indian government contemplating crossing the 'threshold' of its undeclared nuclear-weapon State status, Pakistan's Prime Minister, Benazir Bhutto, said on 2 May:

"We cannot disarm unilaterally, nor can we shut down our nuclear programme without a regional nuclear regime... We can safeguard our sovereignty by keeping our options open... we cannot surrender our independence to satisfy India's outdated bid for power projection, nor shall we ever place ourselves in a situation of nuclear blackmail..."

US-North Korea Accord: implementation getting under way

Progress on implementing the October 1994 US-North Korea Framework Agreement appears to be accelerating. The Framework Agreement aims to provide North Korea with replacement nuclear reactors, and to ensure that material produced by its old facilities is accounted for and disposed of. Responsibility for meeting the former objective will fall to the US-South-Korea-Japan led Korean Peninsular Energy Development Organisation (KEDO). Responsibility for meeting the latter objective rests with the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA).

The new facilities

On 28 April, a KEDO team of experts began the Organisation's latest survey of preparations being made by North Korea in advance of the construction of new light-water reactors (LWRs) in the North-eastern coastal town of Sinpo. On 7 May, the Yonhap news agency quoted a team-member as saying: "North Korea has made considerable preparations for the project, including the relocation of a sizeable number of residents and the installation of a fibre-optic cable between Pyongyang and Sinpo."

According to a KEDO official quoted before the visit (22 April): "we expect the basic work on infrastructure will begin as early as June if work proceeds at the current pace."

The old facilities

On 1 May, the White House announced that arrangements had been finalised for monitoring and then removing spent fuel rods at North Korea's now-inoperative Yongbyon nuclear facility. According to spokesperson Michael McCurry:

"...today, after months of technical preparations and discussions between US energy experts and private US companies, the canning operation on 8,000 spent nuclear fuel rods at the facility in North Korea commenced under the supervision of the International Atomic Energy Agency.

It's going to make the world a safer place. They're basically putting the spent fuel rods that are currently in a cooling pond in steel canisters and safeguarding them until such time as they're eventually moved from North Korea, and the way that happens is all stipulated...in the agreement that this administration reached in October of 1994... [This] solves what is arguably one of the most dangerous national security problems that this President faced when he came to office."

However, IAEA spokesperson David Kyd, speaking from the Agency's Headquarters in Vienna on 2 May, said that there was "a less bright aspect" of the deal: "we are not being given an opportunity to take any samples from the rods to verify their history." Nonetheless, Kyd said the arrangements were "good news in that it will stop the deterioration of the rods. It will make the situation safer and it will of course let us know where they are for safeguarding purposes."

Discussions on missiles

On 20-21 April, US and North Korean officials met in Berlin to begin detailed discussions of North Korea's ballistic missile development programme and export policy. The US team was led by Deputy Assistant Secretary of State Robert Einhorn, who told reporters on 21 April: "The talks have been useful and we have gotten off to a good start."

On 13 May, US officials dismissed reports that America was considering asking Japan and South Korea to provide funds which could be offered to North Korea to induce changes in policy. An unnamed official added that neither was the US planning on offering any such inducement:

"We don't pay countries to behave responsibly... We are not talking about direct compensation... We have only talked about how responsible behaviour could help create opportunities for developing better economic relations with the US and other countries..."

NATO firm on option of eastward nuclear deployment

NATO's Secretary-General, Javier Solana, has been repeating the Alliance's view that it has the right - though it does not currently plan - to deploy nuclear weapons on the territory of any new Member State. Speaking in Oslo on 9 May, Solana said:

"The nuclear posture we have in NATO today should not be changed and weakened when the Alliance is enlarged... Countries wanting to join NATO must go in as full members with all the obligations [involved]..."

On 12 May, an unnamed senior Russian official was quoted as reacting to Solana's 9 May comments: "Our negative attitude to the plans for NATO eastward expansion is well known... At the same time, we are ready for reasonable compromises. The statement of Solana, if it is conveyed correctly, leaves this process without foundation."

On 14 May, Russia's Defence Minister, Pavel Grachev, warned:

"If our recommendations are not taken into account and if no new routes of cooperation are found between Russia and NATO, we will take steps in the military sphere of the Western region, including strengthening troop formations there."

Grachev was speaking meeting his Belarussian counterpart Leonid Maltsev. Earlier in May, Belarus' President, Alexander Lukashenko, was reported as saying:

"We have to keep the peace in our country and in Europe. That is why I oppose the expansion of NATO and therefore its nuclear weapons in the East... We cannot look calmly on at the movements of this dreadful monster."

On 3 May, Poland's Foreign Minister, Dariusz Rosati, said his country was prepared to join NATO on the understanding that nuclear weapons may one day be deployed on its territory: "Poland wants to be a fully-fledged NATO member with all that implies... We cannot exclude the possibility [of nuclear deployment] but this is obviously an issue which will be discussed with other NATO countries..."

Furore over Perry comments on Libya

In early April (see last issue), US Defense Secretary William Perry provoked a minor storm of controversy when he implied an American willingness to prevent by military means the construction of an alleged Libyan chemical weapons facility. Shortly before making these remarks, Perry had insisted that the US would be within its rights to use or threaten to use nuclear weapons against the use or threat of use of chemical weapons. Some observers merged his remarks, leading to speculation that the US was prepared to use nuclear weapons to destroy the suspect facility. This supposition was denounced as erroneous by Department of Defense spokesperson Kenneth Bacon on 7 May:

"Should military options be necessary, we can accomplish this with conventional means. There is no consideration to using nuclear weapons and any implication that we would use nuclear weapons pre- emptively against this plant is just wrong."

A separate controversy surrounds Perry's assertion that the US would be justified in keeping the nuclear weapons option to deter or retaliate against chemical attack. Speaking on 26 April, Perry said:

"...in every situation that I have seen so far, nuclear weapons would not be required for response - that is, we could have a devastating response without the use of nuclear weapons. But we would not forswear that possibility..."

Such a position appears to contradict the formula set out in the negative security assurances offered by the United States. This was the interpretation, for instance, of Stephen Young of the British American Security Information Council (BASIC), quoted on 3 May as claiming that the Defense Secretary's remarks meant that "the United States has violated a key commitment it made to non- nuclear countries."

See the extended Editor's Note in this issue for analysis of commitments actually given by the nuclear-weapon States.

US moves nearer CWC ratification

On 25 April, the US moved closer to ratifying the 1993 Chemical Weapons Convention (CWC) when the Senate Foreign Relations Committee passed a resolution approving such a course of action. The Committee's Chair, Jesse Helms (Republican - North Carolina), had argued against the resolution, which passed by 13 votes to 5. Helms said afterwards:

"I do not believe that the treaty submitted to the Senate is verifiable. Nor will it reduce the arsenals of terrorist countries and other nations hostile to the United States..."

It was not clear from reports when the Senate is likely to debate the issue.

Landmines: developments related to the review conference

Due to the coverage of the Inhumane Weapons Convention Review Conference in Guest Analysis, this review deals only with related developments. See also Documents and Sources for information concerning the main subsequent development - the new US policy on the issue.

On 16 April, German Defence Minister Volker Ruhe announced that the State's army would no longer be equipped with landmines and intended to destroy over a million of them.

On 22 April, the UK announced its support for a total landmines ban, while reserving the right to procure new, 'smart' (self- destructing and self-deactivating) mines if a ban is not forthcoming. Britain currently has no such mines. It now plans to destroy nearly half its stockpile in the near future. See last issue for text of announcement.

Also on 22 April, New Zealand announced a "formal renunciation" of landmines, of which it has no stocks. According to Defence Minister Paul East, the move "reflects the government's concern at the horrific and ongoing effects of landmines world wide, particularly on innocent civilians." New Zealand reserved the right to review its position "in exceptional circumstances."

On 8 May, Singapore announced a two-year moratorium on the exports of non-self-destructing or self-deactivating mines.

On 13 May, South Africa announced a permanent ban on the export of landmines. An interim ban on their use by the South African National Defence Force (SANDF) was also imposed. SANDF will now conduct a study to review long-term policy. Last year, SANDF announced plans to replace its existing stocks with 'smart' mines.

Earlier, on 2 May, the UN launched an appeal to raise $50 million for landmines clearance in Afghanistan.

CFE Conference opens

On 15 May, a Conference to review the terms and conditions of the 1990 Conventional Forces in Europe (CFE) Treaty opened in Vienna. The Conference is certain to be dominated by attempts to accomodate Russia's request for changes in limits on troop numbers and equipment on its territory. Russia's troop and equipment deployments - for example in the CFE 'flank zone' including Chechnya - are currently considerably in excess of Treaty specifications. Overall, according to reports, Russia is deploying 3,820 more armoured vehicles than allowed (4,400 against a limit of 580), and 1,200 more tanks (1,999 against a limit of 700). Ukraine is similarly unhappy with the limits of a Treaty concluded in the twilight of the Soviet era. See Documents and Sources for technical and political background.

There were unsuccessful attempts between the US and Russia - with their respective negotiating teams led by Under-Secretary of State Lynn Davis and Deputy Foreign Minister Georgi Mamedov - to reach agreement before the Conference opened. Russia has apparently drawn up a 12-point plan based on the idea of establishing more 'rear zones' - zones permissive of more flexible deployment limits.

UN Secretary-General slams arms trade

On 23 April, the UN Secretary-General, Dr. Boutros Boutros-Ghali, addressing the UN's Disarmament Commission in New York, spoke of his detestation of the "senseless trend" of major military powers exporting arms and fuelling conflicts whose suffering those same powers then have to step in to help alleviate:

"This senseless trend must be reversed... Rich countries manufacture and sell the weapons to poorer countries at a healthy profit. The poorer countries not only lose scarce revenue to arms acquisition, but also frequently fall victim to these imported instruments of violence... [These] same wealthy States then spend much greater sums on emergency relief for the victims of the wars their arms made possible."

Disarmament Diplomacy is edited by Dr. Sean Howard with the assistance of Richard Jones and Simon Robinson. Richard Jones will shortly be leaving Dfax, and will be greatly missed. All at Dfax express their thanks and wish him well.

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