Statement by Ambassador Ronaldo Mota Sardenberg,
Permanent Representative of Brazil to the UN
New York, 20 April 2004
delegation of Brazil would like to commend you for convening this timely, open
responding to the request of Canada, Mexico, New Zealand, South Africa, Sweden
and Switzerland, you have created a crucial opportunity for all Member States to
express their views and perceptions on the draft resolution on weapons of mass
destruction and non-State actors. We believe the UN membership will provide an
indispensable input to the negotiations now taking place within the Security
Brazilian position regarding the current draft is based on two clear underlying
that the Council is dealing with the potential threat posed by non-State actors,
especially terrorists, having access to nuclear, chemical and biological
weapons, as well as to their means of delivery, in order to close a gap in
International Law (and let me add
that the relevant international instruments do not
the required detail with that potential threat);
second, that a sense of urgency is needed, given the gravity of this
is in a comfortable position to address this issue.
At the domestic level, the
Brazilian Constitution forbids the use of nuclear energy for non-peaceful
laws regarding the prohibition of chemical and biological weapons have already
been adopted. At the international level, we are party to all major treaties and
arrangements on these subjects - the Treaty of Tlatelolco;
the Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT); the CTBT, the CWC and the BWC.
We are also members of the Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG) and of the
Missile Technology Control Regime (MTCR). Additionally, with
the creation of the Brazilian-Argentine Agency for Accounting and Control
of Nuclear Materials (ABACC), Argentina and Brazil pioneered a scheme for
bilateral nuclear inspections that is widely seen as a model of cooperation.
credentials on this field are unimpeachable.
parallel, we pursue the universalization of all international instruments in the
field of WMDs and urge their full implementation by States Parties.
world without any weapons of mass destruction would be a safer world for all of
us, for our children and grandchildren.
take this opportunity to invite all Member States to show their commitment to
the aim of safeguarding the integrity of existing international treaties and
conventions, the delegation of Brazil circulated to the members of the Council
on April 8th last a non-paper suggesting an alternative way of
addressing the subject of WMDs and non-State actors.
We believed such approach provided a satisfactory, expedite manner to
pursue our shared objectives, in a way consistent with International Law.
addition, it is our view that, by avoiding the term ‘non-proliferation’, and
resorting to innovative language aimed at characterizing the linkage between
non-State actors and WMDs as a new development in international life, we would
have sidestepped many legal, political and practical difficulties in our
negotiations, while sharpening the focus of the draft.
showing a readiness to consider our non-paper, the co-sponsors were not really
responsive to it.
The explanations then provided, however valuable, did not seem entirely
persuasive or sufficient.
This encouraged a belief that the only way still open for improving the
draft resolution would be the presentation of further amendments.
last Tuesday, April 20th, our delegation circulated a small number of
amendments expressing our concerns.
These proposals are complementary to other suggestions already submitted
by members of the Council, which have our support.
To our regret, only a few, limited number of proposals have so far been
incorporated to the revised text.
But we assume that the Council will be working towards reaching a
consensus on this matter.
said that, I would like to state our core positions regarding the draft as it
the resolution should emphasize the primary responsibility of the Council to act
against any potential threat to international peace and security, as provided
for by the Charter of the United Nations;
it should make
new concepts to
address a new issue, namely
the transparent concepts of non-access, non-transfer and non-availability
of WMDs to
it should reflect the delicate balance existing in international instruments in
this field, regarding obligations for all States Parties on non-proliferation,
disarmament, and international cooperation for peaceful purposes;
the resolution should not need to invoke Chapter VII, as Article 25 of the
Charter provides that all decisions by the Security Council shall be accepted
and carried out by the Member States of the Organization.
If, however, there is an intention of maintaining a reference to Chapter
VII, we could accept that its scope of application be limited to the first three
a better language should be sought as regards the obligation contained in
operative paragraph 2 to the effect that all States shall adopt specified laws;
we recommend that the text take into account the independence of National
Congresses in the exercise of their law-making power;
finally, the Committee envisaged by operative paragraph 9 should not carry out
activities that may undercut attributions of multilateral organizations
established by international instruments.
We are waiting for further clarification by the co-sponsors on aspects
related to the possible mandate, functions and composition of the Committee.
wish to reiterate that my delegation has high expectations for the results of
this open debate.
This session will certainly allow us to grasp the perceptions of the
For our part, we are ready to pursue a successful outcome – that is to
say, an approach that effectively responds to this potential threat against
international peace and security and that is taken as meritorious by the wider
membership of the Organization.