Statement on the Issue of Security Assurances by the Chinese Delegation at the First Session of the Preparation Committee of the 2010 NPT Review Conference
(May 2007, Vienna)
As an important issue in the field of nuclear disarmament and nuclear non-proliferation, security assurances to non-nuclear-weapon states is of great realistic significance to the advancement of nuclear disarmament process and preventing nuclear-weapon proliferation.
Over the past few years, some worrying negative developments in the international security field have made it particularly urgent and important to address the issue of security assurances properly.
It should be noted that security assurances to the non-nuclear-weapon states will enhance their safety and reduce their motivation to pursue nuclear weapons. This is not only conducive to preventing nuclear weapon proliferation but to creating a sound international environment to nuclear disarmament. Therefore, security assurances should be regarded as an important measure to prevent nuclear proliferation and to safeguard international nuclear non-proliferation regime rather than a benefaction given by nuclear-weapon states to non-nuclear-weapon states.
The complete prohibition and thorough destruction of nuclear weapons by nuclear-weapon-states, which will free the world form the threat of nuclear weapons, is the fundamental solution to address the issue of security assurance. Pending the realization of this goal, all nuclear-weapon states should undertake not to be the first to use nuclear weapons at any time or under any circumstances, not to use or threat to use nuclear weapons against non-nuclear-weapon states or nuclear-weapon-free zones, and to conclude international legal instruments without delay in this regard. Besides, the nuclear-weapon states should also diminish the role of nuclear weapons in their national security policy, not list any states as targets of nuclear strike, and not design any nuclear attack plan against non-nuclear-weapon states. All these measures will contribute to the progress on security assurances for non-nuclear-weapon states.
China has all along committed not to be the first to use nuclear weapons at any time or under any circumstances, not to use or threaten to use nuclear weapons against non-nuclear-weapon states and nuclear-weapon-free zones. China always calls upon other nuclear-weapon states to undertake such commitments without any condition.
China supports the Conference on Disarmament to start substantive work without delay on reaching an international legal instrument on security assurances to non-nuclear-weapon states. China also supports negotiating a protocol on security assurances to non-nuclear-weapon states within the NPT framework. China is open to and will actively consider any suggestions or measures which are conducive to making progress on security assurances for non-nuclear-weapon states.
China hopes that the wishes of non-nuclear-weapon states for acquiring universal and legally-binding security assurances will come true at an early date, and will continue to make its relentless efforts in this regard.
Thank you, Mr. Chairman.