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"13 Practical Steps" for nuclear disarmament

Updated: 2007-05-02 11:19
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The "13 Practical Steps" on non-proliferation and disarmament outlined at the 2000 Nuclear Non-proliferation Treaty (NPT) Review Conference provide important guidelines on promoting the nuclear disarmament process, a Chinese official said Tuesday.

Zhang Yan, director general of the Department of Arms Control and Disarmament of the Chinese Foreign Ministry made the remarks as head of the Chinese delegation at the General Debate in the First Session of the Preparatory Committee for the 2010 NPT Review Conference.

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Zhang said China maintains that the two countries (the United States and Russia) possessing the largest nuclear arsenals bear special responsibility and should take the lead in nuclear disarmament.

Zhang said China hopes the two countries could implement the agreement they have concluded in a verifiable and irreversible manner, to create the conditions for other nuclear-weapon states to join in the nuclear disarmament process and for the final realization of the complete and thorough nuclear disarmament.

The international community should take full consideration of the current situation and effectively and faithfully implement the"13 Practical Steps" based on the guidelines of "promoting global strategic balance and stability" and "undiminished security for all," Zhang said.

He pointed out that the non-nuclear-weapon states should enjoy the security assurance provided by nuclear-weapon states.

All nuclear-weapon states should undertake not to be the first to use nuclear weapons at any time or in any circumstances, not to use or threaten to use nuclear weapons against non-nuclear-weapon states and nuclear-weapon-free zones, and to conclude an international legally binding instrument at an early date, Zhang said.

Zhang said that China attaches great importance to the recent proposals submitted by parties concerned, regarding the program of the Conference on Disarmament, and hopes all parties can reach a consensus on the basis of broad consultation.