Tracking Number:  147084

Title:  "Prospect for Fourth NPT Review Conference Called Good." Portion of ACDA official Brad Gordon's testimony before the House Foreign Affairs Subcommittee on Arms Control. (900712)

Date:  19900712


07/12/90 1Ac Tx PROSPECT FOR FOURTH NPT REVIEW CONFERENCE CALLED GOOD (Excerpts: Gordon July 11 testimony) (2650)

Washington -- The outlook for a successful Nuclear Non- Proliferation Treaty (NPT) Review Conference in Geneva in August "is good," according to a key arms control official, despite "a number of difficult and contentious issues."

Brad Gordon, assistant director of the Bureau of Nuclear and Weapons Control at the U.S. Arms Control and Disarmament Agency, told members of Congress July 11 that the United States believes the primary objective of the fourth NPT Review Conference "should be to reaffirm the parties' support for the treaty and its contribution to the security and well-being of all states."

He said that objective can be achieved by "a fair and balanced review" of the implementation of treaty's provisions since the 1985 Review Conference.

Following are excerpts from Gordon's statement, as prepared for delivery to the House Foreign Affairs Subcommittee on Arms Control, International Security and Science:

(begin excerpts)

While non-proliferation has always been a primary focus of U.S. foreign and national security policy, its increasing prominence is due to a number of factors. As East-West tensions subside along with a reduction in military confrontation in Europe, the capabilities of countries in other regions of the world to acquire weapons of mass destruction has grown. For some, the propensity to use such weapons has also been tragically demonstrated.

The urgency of addressing the problem of missile proliferation was given fresh impetus during the 1980s as it became increasingly evident that a number of countries of nuclear proliferation concern were attempting to acquire nuclear-capable missiles, or the technology to build them. And too narrow a focus on potential nuclear proliferants would not adequately address the emergence of the disturbing phenomenon of CW-capable missiles as the "poor country's nuclear weapon" of the '90s.

Since the establishment of the Missile Technology Control Regime (MTCR) in April 1987, the United States and our six Economic Summit partners have made measurable progress in stemming the proliferation of nuclear-capable missiles.

GE 2 POL409 The Regime has also succeeded in attracting new adherents. Spain and the Netherlands joined this group in 1989 and 1990, respectively; Belgium, Luxembourg, and Australia are expected to join shortly. The Soviet Union at the Washington Summit affirmed its willingness to observe the MTCR guidelines. The MTCR's focus on controlling the flow of missile technology to projects of concern has also stimulated increased cooperation and a strengthening of national export controls among Regime adherents as well as a number of other Western technology suppliers. The new German export control law is particularly noteworthy in this respect.

The United States has ongoing missile non-proliferation dialogues with both the USSR and China. At the recent summit, the U.S. and Soviet heads of state voiced their agreement to increase the intensity of our cooperation. The Chinese have stated that their policy with regard to missile exports will be a responsible one. On December 11, the Chinese government termed reports that China plans to sell M-9 missiles to Syria "utterly groundless" and stated publicly that, except for its sale of missiles to Saudi Arabia, "China has not sold and has no plan to sell any medium-range missile to any Middle Eastern country." We have welcomed the PRC statements, which set out publicly a standard for judging its weapon sales policy. However, we do have concerns about ambiguities in stated PRC policy toward missile sales, particularly what they mean by intermediate-range missiles and whether their statements include sales of technology as well. We will continue our dialogue and look for actions consistent with Beijing's stated "prudent and responsible attitude." We will continue to press the Chinese to make good on their commitments.

Our missile non-proliferation efforts in Latin America have had results. The Condor II missile program, in which Argentina, Egypt, and Iraq have cooperated, has been slowed by the efforts of the MTCR partners to deny them key technologies. We also welcome the assurance of President Menem of Argentina that the program has stopped. In Brazil, missile and space launch vehicle programs continue side by side, but recent high-level diplomatic discussions on proliferation matters indicate possibilities for progress.

The Middle East is an area of continuing, and increasingly serious, concern. Iraq is emerging as a major problem because of its determined efforts to acquire a missile delivery capability for its chemical weapons. Several other countries in the region possess or are developing missiles and chemical weapons. While the Iran-Iraq war has ceased, the underlying hostilities and tensions remain, and with them, the motivation to acquire new, more deadly, weapons. The spectre of missile delivery systems armed

GE 3 POL409 with nuclear or chemical weapons continues to threaten the peoples of the area.

The use of chemical weapons during the past decade, particularly by Iran and Iraq, has heightened worldwide concern about the dangerous proliferation and use of these weapons. The United States has responded to this international challenge by sponsoring a treaty for a comprehensive and global CW ban. Pending the completion of such a ban, the United States has also taken both unilateral and cooperative actions to inhibit the use and curb the proliferation of chemical weapons.

The United States strictly controls the export of chemical weapons precursors and agents. The United States routinely denies any license request for those chemicals by Iran, Iraq, Syria, and Libya. Unilaterally, the United States has intervened directly through diplomatic channels to dissuade countries from acquiring CW or from providing chemicals, equipment, and know-how for these weapons.

The United States is an active participant in international efforts to curb CW proliferation. Since November 1985, we have held five rounds of discussions with the Soviets on technical and political steps to limit the spread of chemical weapons. The Washington Summit joint statement reflects our bilateral commitment to combat the serious threat to the international community posed by chemical weapons. The United States and the Soviet Union also signed an agreement calling for the destruction of the vast bulk of their declared stocks to begin by the end of 1992.

The United States also actively participates in the Australia Group which seeks to coordinate export controls on CW-related chemicals. This group of 20 Western industrialized nations observes an informal "warning list" of 50 chemical weapons precursors and "warning guidelines" on equipment to assist industry in identifying suspicious transactions. In addition, the group is in the process of issuing a paper to warn industry, the scientific community, and other relevant organizations of the risks of inadvertently aiding CW proliferation. At the United Nations, we continue to support the valuable role of the secretary general in investigating CW use, and have called for more effective use of Chapter VII sanctions against CW users.

Last year we witnessed several significant efforts by governments and industry to address the proliferation and use of CW. The Paris CW Use Conference in January 1989 was successful in achieving a final declaration in which 149 countries reaffirmed their commitment not to use chemical weapons and condemned such use. Likewise, the Canberra Government-Industry Conference Against Chemical Weapons in September 1989 succeeded in obtaining an undertaking from

GE 4 POL409 industry to work with governments to bring about a comprehensive, and global Chemical Weapons Convention.

The proliferation of nuclear weapons, chemical weapons, missiles, and other advanced weapons each poses its own threat to regional and international security. Accordingly, our efforts to deal with them will be both unrelenting and, in each case, based on the best applicable means and methods.

Specifically, in the area of nuclear proliferation, the administration is conducting a vigorous diplomatic effort to maintain existing barriers while trying to facilitate regional approaches to the most difficult problems. This approach encompasses the NPT, the Treaty of Tlatelolco, the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), export controls, and special efforts in key regions.

The United States continues its strong support for the Treaty of Tlatelolco, a far-sighted initiative of Latin American states to establish a regional nuclear-weapons- free zone. This treaty offers real hope for ensuring that all nations of Latin America accept an internationally- binding obligation not to acquire nuclear weapons and to accept IAEA safeguards on all their nuclear activities. The administration has carried out extensive diplomatic efforts to bring this treaty into force throughout the region. Ambassador Richard Kennedy, for example, has twice visited the area in recent months to discuss nuclear issues.

The IAEA is also an important institutional barrier to nuclear non-proliferation and deserves the support of all nations. High-level U.S. officials have met IAEA Director General Blix several times in recent months and have emphasized the importance that the administration places on the IAEA. IAEA safeguards play a significant role in providing assurance that states use their nuclear facilities only for civil purposes. IAEA safeguards are constantly improving, and the administration is aware of the importance of finding ways to ensure that the IAEA has the resources necessary to maintain and, where necessary, to expand its safeguards activities.

Cooperation with other nations on nuclear export controls has been particularly intensive during the administration's first 18 months. There has been considerable diplomacy aimed at encouraging other nuclear supplier states to adopt a policy of requiring non-nuclear weapon states to accept IAEA safeguards on all their nuclear activities as a condition of any significant, new nuclear supply commitment. We were pleased when Japan announced last September that it had adopted this policy. Other nuclear supplier issues we have focused on include upgrading the control lists of the NPT Exporters Committee, urging

GE 5 POL409 restraint on exports to the Middle East, and promoting controls on dual-use items.

The administration has focused attention on those regions where the nuclear proliferation risk is the greatest. South Africa is currently examining the question of NPT adherence. Its officials have met with the three NPT depositary states -- the United States, USSR, and United Kingdom -- and we remain hopeful that South Africa will accede. We have urged Iraq to honor its NPT commitment and to maintain a fully transparent civil nuclear program. Israel has been reminded that the United States supports universal NPT adherence. We have counseled India and Pakistan to exercise restraint in their nuclear programs and to look for regional steps that could head off nuclear weapons competition. An intensive diplomatic effort has been undertaken to persuade North Korea to bring an NPT safeguards agreement into force at the earliest possible time.

The Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty is the cornerstone of the international nuclear non-proliferation regime and of our efforts to prevent the further spread of nuclear weapons. With 140 parties, it is the most widely adhered to, and most successful multilateral arms control agreement in history. Since its negotiation in 1968, the United States has consistently supported universal adherence to the NPT as one of the primary means to stem further nuclear proliferation. The continued existence and effective implementation of the NPT is vital to our nuclear non- proliferation efforts.

The NPT has three primary goals: preventing the further spread of nuclear weapons (Articles I and II); facilitating international cooperation in the peaceful uses of nuclear energy under IAEA safeguards (Articles III and IV); and encouraging negotiations on nuclear arms control (Article VI).

Much of the existing nuclear non-proliferation regime has been built upon the NPT. Perhaps most importantly, the NPT has helped to create an internationally accepted norm that the further spread of nuclear weapons is undesirable and would weaken international and regional security. The NPT helps to assure the security of all nations, both parties and non-parties to the treaty. The world is clearly a safer place with the NPT.

The fourth NPT Review Conference begins August 20 in Geneva. At that time approximately 100 parties will gather to examine the operation of the treaty over the past five years. We believe the conference's primary objective should be to reaffirm the parties' support for the treaty and its contribution to the security and well-being of all states. This objective can be attained through a fair and

GE 6 POL409 balanced review of the implementation over the past five years of all the provisions of the treaty.

Further, the Review Conference should examine ways to strengthen the overall non-proliferation regime and the implementation of the NPT. The conference will, we hope, establish a firm basis for an unconditional, unlimited extension of the treaty in 1995.

While the outlook for a successful conference appears good, a number of difficult and contentious issues remain. For example, North Korea's continuing failure to conclude an NPT full-scope safeguards agreement, as required by Article III of the treaty, is likely to be closely examined by the conference.

We expect the subject of security assurances to non-nuclear weapon states against the use of nuclear weapons to be a matter of increased attention at this year's Review Conference. As in past conferences, the nuclear programs of significant non-parties will also be scrutinized. We believe that all states with unsafeguarded nuclear activities should be urged to place all their nuclear facilities under safeguards, and that not just Israel and South Africa be singled out for criticism. In this regard, South Africa's actions toward the NPT will be closely watched. Extraneous political issues involving various regional conflicts could, despite our efforts to exclude them, also intrude into the Review Conference.

Developing state parties are also likely to criticize developed, supplier states for providing inadequate technical assistance and cooperation for peaceful uses of nuclear energy. We do not expect the debate on this issue to be contentious, due, in part, to the slowing of nuclear power development in the wake of the 1986 Chernobyl accident, as well as to the stable and extensive nuclear cooperation arrangements between NPT parties. As in 1985, we will document the substantial level of assistance that the United States provides both bilaterally and through the IAEA, as well as the preference we give to NPT parties. We believe that there is a strong case to be made concerning the value of the NPT in assisting social and economic development through peaceful uses of nuclear energy, particularly in areas of interest to developing nations, such as medicine, agriculture, geology, and industrial uses.

It is important to note that the treaty does not expire in 1995. The terms of the treaty do not establish any specific period of duration for the NPT. Article X of the NPT requires that 25 years after the entry into force of the treaty, a conference shall be convened to decide whether the treaty shall continue in force indefinitely, or shall be extended for an additional fixed period or periods. Thus, what is at stake is the length of the

GE 7 POL409 extension. The treaty specifies that this decision shall be taken by a majority of the parties to the treaty. Our view, and that of a number of other governments we have been consulting, is that in 1995 the treaty should be extended indefinitely.

The misperception that the treaty expires in 1995 has been articulated by some, including a few parties and non- governmental organizations, who would like to condition the continuation of the NPT on the attainment of various measures, such as a comprehensive nuclear test ban treaty.

We believe that the NPT, with its careful balance of obligations, stands on its own and should not be amended or held hostage to the attainment of specific conditions for its extension.

We are optimistic that the 1990 NPT Review Conference will achieve the objectives that we are seeking. We believe that the great majority of parties to the NPT recognize, as we do, that the world is a much better and more secure place with the treaty and that this element of international security is even more vital as we seek to establish enduring international peace and stability in the years ahead.

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