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Statement by Ambassador Wang Qun at the General Debate of the First Committee of the 64th Session of the United Nations General Assembly

2009-10-06 11:42

Statement by H.E. Ambassador Wang Qun,

Head of the Chinese Delegation

at the General Debate of the First Committee

of the 64th Session of the United Nations General Assembly

(New York, October 6, 2009)

Mr. Chairman,

At the outset, please allow me to congratulate you on your election to the chairmanship of this session of the UNGA First Committee. I am confident that, with your rich diplomatic experience and wisdom, the current session will be steered to a success. The Chinese Delegation will assure you of its full cooperation.

Mr. Chairman,

As the new century ushered in, the world multi-polarization process picks up its pace in conjunction with further acceleration of the economic globalization with peace and development as the main trend of the times. The further deepening of interdependence between countries has expanded the common interests of countries and enhanced their exchange and cooperation. At the same time, the world remains far from tranquil. While regional conflicts and hotspot issues keep emerging, terrorism is rampant and nuclear proliferation remains a pressing issue.

In confronting complicated and volatile international security situation, all countries should embrace a new security concept featuring mutual trust, mutual benefit, equality and coordination, fully respect and accommodate the legitimate security concerns of countries, endeavor to build state-to-state relations of mutual understanding and mutual trust, resolve differences and dispel misgivings, conduct dialogue and cooperation on an equal footing, and resolve international disputes through peaceful means. In the meantime, the international community should adhere to multilateralism, consolidate the collective security system with the United Nations at its core. Only by so doing, can the international community effectively maintain the international peace and stability and attain the goal of security for all with a win-win result.

Chinese President Hu Jintao, at the recent UN Security Council Summit on Nuclear Non-Proliferation and Nuclear Disarmament, put forward five important propositions, coupled with a four-point expectation on a safer world for all. It is our hope that the international community can make full use of the unprecedented opportunities newly emerged on the front of international arms control and non-proliferation and advance the international arms control and non-proliferation process, so as to contribute to the goal of a safer world for all.

Mr. Chairman,

To achieve the complete prohibition and thorough destruction of nuclear weapons for a world free of nuclear weapons is not only the shared aspiration of all peace-loving people, but also a goal that China has all along been advocating and pursuing with unremitting efforts. To achieve this goal at an early date, the international community should channel their efforts in the following aspects:

Firstly, nuclear-weapon states should fulfill nuclear disarmament obligations in good faith and publicly undertake not to seek permanent possession of nuclear weapons. In the meantime, efforts are called for to maintain the global strategic balance and stability while abandoning the practice of seeking absolute strategic advantage. As countries with the largest nuclear arsenals in the world, the United States and Russia should continue to take the lead in making drastic reductions in their nuclear weapons. We welcome the ongoing nuclear disarmament negotiations between the two countries and hope they will reach a agreement as scheduled.

Secondly, nuclear-weapon states should reduce the role of nuclear weapons in their national security, and abandon the nuclear deterrence policies based on first use of nuclear weapons. Under the new circumstances, the international community should negotiate and conclude an international legal instrument on security assurances for non-nuclear-weapon states as early as possible. Nuclear-weapon states should negotiate and conclude a treaty on no-first-use of nuclear weapons against one another.

Thirdly, the international community should work to promote the early entry into force of the Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty (CTBT) and early commencement of negotiation on the Fissile Material Cut-off Treaty (FMCT). The efforts of countries of relevant regions to establish nuclear-weapon-free zones on the basis of consultations among themselves and voluntary agreements must be respected and supported.

Fourthly, the international community should develop, at an appropriate time, a viable, long-term plan composed of phased actions, including the conclusion of a convention on the complete prohibition of nuclear weapons, so as to attain the ultimate goal of complete and thorough nuclear disarmament under effective international supervision.

Mr. Chairman,

Nuclear non-proliferation and nuclear disarmament are mutually reinforcing and supplementary to each other. To achieve complete prohibition and thorough destruction of nuclear weapons for a nuclear-weapon-free world, the international efforts in nuclear non-proliferation must be vigorously intensified in eliminating the risk of nuclear weapon proliferation.

Firstly, the international nuclear non-proliferation regime should be consolidated and strengthened. The universality, authority and effectiveness of the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT) should be further enhanced. In this context, it is important to strengthen the safeguards capabilities of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), and work to promote the effective implementation of and universal adherence to the Safeguards Agreement and its Additional Protocol.

Secondly, it is imperative that non-proliferation issues be resolved peacefully through political and diplomatic means and within the framework of existing international law. The root causes of nuclear weapon should be done away with.

Thirdly, the UN Security Council Resolution 1540 should be fully implemented with intensified non-proliferation export control and international cooperation. In the meantime, the practice of double standards should be discarded.

Fourthly, great importance should be attached to nuclear security. It is essential that concrete and effective measures be in place so as to ensure the security of nuclear facilities and nuclear materials in prevention of diversion of nuclear materials. The international community should also work to intensify cooperation in combating nuclear terrorism.

Mr. Chairman,

To achieve a nuclear-weapon-free world, vigorous efforts are called for to promote the peaceful use of nuclear energy and international cooperation.

- Peaceful use of nuclear energy is an inalienable legitimate right of non-nuclear-weapon states. This right must be truly respected and upheld, and should not be compromised or restricted under the excuse of non-proliferation.

- The IAEA should increase input and assistance to developing countries in the fields of nuclear power, nuclear safety and security, and nuclear technology application.

- The international community should, through multilateral consultations, work to explore proper ways that can both reduce proliferation risks and promote peaceful use of nuclear energy, including the possibility of establishing a multilateral nuclear fuel supply mechanism.

The NPT Review Conference scheduled for next May is of great significance. All parties should seize this opportunity and work to advance the three major objectives of nuclear non-proliferation, nuclear disarmament and peaceful use of nuclear energy in a comprehensive and balanced manner, so that the Review Conference could produce substantive outcomes.

Mr. Chairman,

China has consistently stood for the complete prohibition and thorough destruction of nuclear weapons. China is firmly committed to a nuclear strategy of self-defence. We have faithfully abided by our commitment that we will not be the first to use nuclear weapons at any time and under any circumstances, and that we will unconditionally not use or threaten to use nuclear weapons against non-nuclear-weapon states or nuclear-weapon-free zones. China is the only nuclear-weapon state that has undertaken such a commitment.

China has persistently exercised the utmost restraint on development of nuclear weapons, and has kept its nuclear capabilities at the minimum level required for national security. China has no intention to participate in any form of nuclear arms race, and has never deployed nuclear weapons on foreign soil.

China has all along supported the international nuclear disarmament efforts. The Chinese Government is committed to promoting the early ratification of the CTBT, and wishes to join the efforts of international community in bringing the Treaty into its early EIF. China welcomes the adoption by Conference on Disarmament (CD) of its Programme of Work this year, and supports the early commencement of negotiation on the FMCT. China will be actively involved in negotiation process

The prevention of weaponization of and an arms race in outer space is an issue of high strategic significance. It also represents the common mission and responsibility on the part of international community. We hope that the CD will soon start its substantive discussions on the draft Treaty on the Prevention of the Placement of Weapons in Outer Space, the Threat or Use of Force Against Outer Space Object which was jointly presented by Russia and China in February last year, so as to contribute to improving the legal system concerning outer space and maintaining security in outer space.

China attaches great importance to the issues of information security and bio-security, and supports international efforts to explore reasonable and feasible solutions to these issues within the framework of the UN.

Mr. Chairman,

China has made unremitting efforts in seeking peaceful resolution to the nuclear issue on the Korean Peninsula and Iranian nuclear issue through dialogue and negotiation. China maintains that the denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula in conjunction with the peace and stability on the Peninsula and in Northeast Asia serve the common interest of all parties concerned. To achieve denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula through dialogue and consultation represents the common understanding of international community, but the only feasible way to solve the nuclear issue on the Korean Peninsula. China welcomes the progress made in recent Geneva Talks on the Iranian nuclear issues and appreciates the flexibilities shown by all relevant parties in the Talks. We hope all parties will seize the current optimum opportunity and keep the momentum of dialogue in an intensified diplomatic effort to seek a comprehensive, long-term and proper solution. China, for its part, will continue to work with other relevant parties to actively promote the resolution to the above nuclear issues.

Mr. Chairman,

A few days ago, the Chinese people celebrated the 60th anniversary of the founding of the People's Republic of China. It is a new historic moment, which not only help us inherit what was traversed but also usher in the future. At this juncture, we are soberly aware that China cannot develop itself in isolation from the rest of the world while the world cannot enjoy prosperity and stability in China's absence. China, as a staunch force safeguarding world peace, will unswervingly follow the path of peaceful development. It, for its part, will work with other countries in an unremitting effort in advancing international arms control, disarmament and non-proliferation cause, so as to further contribute to achieving a harmonious world of lasting peace and common prosperity.

I thank you, Mr. Chairman.

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