US Considers Scrapping Unratified Nuclear Test Ban Accord VOA News 7 Jul 2001 03:53 UTC

A published report says the Bush administration is looking at ways to escape permanently from an unratified international agreement banning nuclear tests.

The New York Times reports Saturday President Bush has resolved to let the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty languish in the U.S. Senate, where its supporters concede they do not have the votes to revive it.

The newspaper says by informing pact supporters that it has no chance of U.S. ratification, Mr. Bush may try to persuade the treaty's allies to acknowledge that the accord is effectively dead.

The newspaper says the strategy is part of a radical change in U.S. arms control philosophy that could include deep arms cuts, deployment of missile defenses and a new framework to combat proliferation that builds on some current accords but rejects others.

The U.S. Senate rejected the test ban treaty two years ago. Mr. Bush is opposed to the accord, saying it does not further the country's non-proliferation policy or strengthen national security.