|Statement by Counsellor Ji Haojun of the Chinese Delegation at the Thematic Discussion on Other Weapons of Mass Destruction at the First Committee of the 73rd Session of the UNGA|
China firmly stands for the purposes and objectives of the Biological Weapons Convention (BWC) and Chemical Weapons Convention (CWC), and supports for the continuous enhancement of their universality, effectiveness and authority. China welcomes the accession of State of Palestine, Niue and the Central African Republic to the BWC, and State of Palestine’s accession to the CWC.
Last year, the Programme of Work of this Inter-Sessional Process (ISP) was adopted in the Meeting of State Parties of the BWC, paving the way for further promoting the BWC process in the next few years. Preventing the risk of misuse and disuse of biotechnology plays a vital role in strengthening the global bio-security. China has actively promoted to formulate a "Model Code of Conduct for Bio-scientists" under the framework of the BWC and on a voluntary basis, so as to effectively tackle the challenges posed by the advance of biotechnology. Last June, an international seminar was held in China by the Chinese Government and the Implementation Support Unit of the BWC, and the Chinese side submitted the updated draft of the Code of Conduct to the Meeting of Expert of BWC in August. China is ready to conduct further discussions on this issue with all parties to improve the draft.China believes that the "Biological Non-Proliferation Export Control and International Cooperation Regime" could provide institutional safeguard for the purposes of both biological nonproliferation and international cooperation, and should be further discussed under the framework of the BWC.
The Chinese government attaches great importance to bio-security. While enhancing its own institutional and capacity building on bio-security, China has actively engaged with international cooperation in this area. This October, Wuhan Institute of Virology, Chinese Academy of Sciences will hold the second International Workshop on Biosafety Laboratory Management and Experimental Techniques, in order to train researchers from developing countries in prevention and control of infectious diseases , and providing bio-security public goods to the international community.
In the coming November, the Fourth Review Conference of Chemical Weapons Convention will be held in the Hague. China commends the work of both the Working Group for the Preparation of the Fourth Review Conference and the Open-Ended Working Group on the Future Priorities of the OPCW. We expect all parties to take core provisions of the Convention into consideration, make full use of the Fourth Review Conference, properly chart a course for its future implementation, and implement all its provisions in a balanced manner, for an early realization of the purposes and objectives of the Convention.
China has always conscientiously and strictly fulfilled its obligations under the Convention, and submitted various declarations to the OPCW timely and accurately. China has received more than 500 on-site inspections so far. By making financial contribution to the OPCW and organizing training courses on chemical assistance and protection for states parties in Asia, China has actively promoted the relevant international cooperation and assisted other states parties to improve their implementation capabilities.
China has always resolutely opposed to the use of chemical weapons by any state, organization or individual under any circumstances and for any purpose. We support a comprehensive, objective and impartial investigation into the alleged use of chemical weapons, come to a conclusion that can withstand the test of history and facts and is based on conclusive evidence, and hold the perpetrators and responsible parties accountable. At the same time, China maintains that dealing with the alleged use of chemical weapons requires full use of the existing mechanism of the Convention and strict compliance with the provisions of the Convention. The decision adopted by vote during the Fourth Special Session of the Conference last June indicated that states parties were highly divided on how to deal with attributions of alleged use of chemical weapons. The Chinese side would like to express its concerns over the fact that such an important issue concerning the purpose and objectives of the Convention was dealt with by forcing a vote without extensive consultations. China urges states parties to go in the same direction, and properly bridge the gap through equal consultations, so as to avoid the negative impact on the future development of the Convention.
China welcomes the positive progress in the completion of the destruction of chemical weapons and chemical weapons residues in Russia, Libya and Iraq. It is regrettable that the possessor state party and abandoning state party failed to complete the destruction of chemical weapons within the time limit stipulated by the Convention.The Chinese side believes that the early completion of the destruction of chemical weapons, including chemical weapons abandoned by Japan in China, is related to the realization of the goal of "a world free of chemical weapons", and deserves the same attention as the alleged use of chemical weapons.
China urges Japan to strictly implement the new destruction plan which agreed in the beginning of 2017, completely and safely destroy the Japanese ACWs as soon as possible by investing more resources, and complete the destruction work by 2022.
Thank you, Mr. Chairman.