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Message from Foreign Minister Yang Jiechi of The People's Republic of China to the Conference on Disarmament

2008/02/18

As the sole international body for conducting multilateral disarmament negotiations, the Conference on Disarmament is charged with the important mission of promoting global arms control and disarmament. China attaches great importance to the Conference and has actively participated in the discussions of all the items on its agenda, including "Prevention of an Arms Race in Outer Space".

Outer space has become an integral part of man's life and contributes to the well-being and social progress of all countries. Thanks to its unremitting efforts over the years, the international community has adopted a series of international legal instruments, contributing to the peaceful exploration and use of outer space.

A peaceful and tranquil outer space free from weaponization and arms race serves the common interests of all countries. It is therefore necessary for the international community to formulate new legal instruments to strengthen the current legal regime on outer space. The U.N. General Assembly has, for over twenty years, adopted resolutions with overwhelming majority, reiterating that the Conference on Disarmament has the primary role in the negotiation of a multilateral agreement on the prevention of an arms race in outer space.

In view of the above, China and Russia have drafted the Treaty on the Prevention of the Placement of Weapons in Outer Space, the Threat or Use of Force against Outer Space Objects. We hope that the Conference on Disarmament will start substantive discussion and reach consensus on it as soon as possible, and China is ready to work with all the other members of the Conference on Disarmament toward this goal. I also hope that with the joint efforts of all its members, the Conference on Disarmament will make positive progress in its work this year.

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