Joint Ministerial Statement on the CTBT, New York, 26 September, 2014
1. We, the Foreign Ministers issuing this statement, reaffirm our commitment to the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty (CTBT) as a core element of the international nuclear disarmament and non-proliferation regime.
2. Recalling the 2010 Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty Review Conference, we express, in the strongest terms, our support for the CTBT's prompt entry into force. This would rid the world of nuclear explosions and contribute to the elimination of nuclear weapons by constraining their development and qualitative improvement.
3. We welcome that the CTBT has achieved near universal adherence with signature by 183 States and ratification by 163 States as of today. We also welcome the ratification of the Treaty by Brunei Darussalam, Chad, Guinea- Bissau, Iraq, Niue and Republic of Congo since our last meeting on September 27th, 2012.
4. Almost 20 years have passed since the CTBT was opened for signature. Although the Treaty is yet to come into force, the nuclear test moratorium has become a de facto international norm. However, without the lasting and legally-binding effect of entry into force of the Treaty, such a norm remains fragile. We therefore urge all states that have not done so to sign and ratify the Treaty, in particular the remaining eight Annex 2 States to sign and ratify without delay. (note)
5. We fully support the Article XIV process reinforced by the various initiatives based on the Action Plan proposed by Hungary and Indonesia and remain committed to the declarations issued at Article XIV Conferences. The Group of Eminent Persons (GEM) will assist this process.
6. We call upon all States to continue the moratorium on nuclear weapon test explosions and refrain from any action that would undermine the CTBT's object and purpose.
7. Only the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) has acted contrary to this moratorium in the 21st Century. We recall international condemnation of its nuclear tests in 2006, 2009 and 2013 and demand that it refrain from further tests. We urge the DPRK to fully comply with its international obligations under the relevant UN Security Council resolutions and its commitments under the 2005 Joint Statement of the Six Party Talks.
8. We welcome advances made by the Preparatory Commission for the CTBT Organization (CTBTO) in strengthening the Treaty's verification regime. The credibility of the verification regime is being increasingly recognized by members of the scientific community, including in states that have yet to ratify the Treaty. We welcome that China has started sending its International Monitoring System (IMS) data to the International Data Centre (IDC). We reaffirm our commitment to support the completion of the verification regime and urge all States Signatories to do likewise.
9. While bearing in mind the Treaty's primary objective regarding nuclear non- proliferation and disarmament, we are encouraged by the fact that the CTBT IMS and IDC have also demonstrated their utility in providing accurate real-time data relating to major earthquakes, tsunamis and nuclear accidents, as well as other civil scientific applications to all States Signatories. We reiterate the importance of the capacity building activities relating to National Data Centres.
10. We stress the importance of Integrated Field Exercise 14, to be held in Jordan in November 2014, which will raise awareness of the Treaty and demonstrate the CTBTO's progress in developing On-Site Inspection capabilities.
11. We appeal to all States to make the utmost effort to achieve the prompt entry into force of the CTBT. We dedicate ourselves individually and jointly to realizing this goal and to continuing to raise awareness of this matter at the highest political level as well as at experts' level.
(note) There are eight remaining Annex 2 states, whose ratification are necessary for entry into force: China, Democratic People's Republic of Korea, Egypt, India, Iran (Islamic Republic of), Israel, Pakistan and the United States of America.