STATEMENT BY H.E. MR. BAATAR CHOISUREN,
8 October 2004
First, I would like to congratulate you on assuming the Chair of this important Committee and other members of the Bureau on their election. I assure you of my delegation’s full support.
With the end of the Cold War the humankind had high hopes for a new era – an era of a long and lasting global peace and effective international partnership towards complete elimination of nuclear and other weapons of mass destruction.
Our current reality is in stark contrast to those hopes – plans for development of new types of nuclear weapons are under way and thousands of existing ones are being retained by their holders, thresholds of their use even against non-nuclear states are being lowered, and a number of important international instruments in the field of nuclear disarmament and arms control have either been left astray or are being increasingly sidelined. Furthermore, the growing threat of proliferation of WMDs and the dangers of their possible acquisition by non-state actors and terrorist groups make it imperative for the international community to take concerted efforts in tackling these challenges.
Over the last year and more, the international community has primarily been preoccupied, along with the war on terror, with prevention of WMD proliferation and has made significant strides in that direction. Libya voluntarily decided to abandon all its WMD programs and the DPRK’s nuclear issue has been put on a path to a peaceful and negotiated solution.
Mongolia welcomes the UNSC resolution 1540 (2004) as a meaningful step towards curbing the WMD proliferation, yet it also holds the view that a correspondingly significant step should be made by Nuclear Weapon States in nuclear disarmament.
We strongly believe that the NPT as the only negotiated, legally-binding instrument available to the international community and a cornerstone of the global non-proliferation regime must be implemented in its entirety.
My delegation joins the previous speakers in reiterating that “nuclear disarmament and nuclear non-proliferation are mutually reinforcing processes”. Mongolia stands for full implementation of the 13 practical steps agreed to at the 2000 NPT Review Conference.
The early entry into-force and universality of the Comprehensive-Test-Ban Treaty, must, therefore, be our first priority. The CTBT, according to its own text, is a “meaningful step in the realization of a systematic process to achieve nuclear disarmament” and the cessation of all nuclear test explosions constitutes an effective measure of nuclear disarmament and non-proliferation in all its aspects by constraining the development and qualitative improvement of nuclear weapons and ending the development of advanced new types of nuclear weapons.
The self-imposed moratoria on nuclear testing are of tremendous significance, nevertheless, such unilateral measures cannot and must not be considered as a substitute to a legally binding and fully verifiable commitment made through the signing and ratification of the CTBT. It is our hope that all the States that have not done so, will sign and/or ratify the CTBT at the earliest possible date.
Mongolia also stands firmly for early start of negotiations on a multilateral, unconditional, and legally-binding instrument on negative security assurances to the non-nuclear weapon states parties to the NPT, and negotiations on the Fissile Materials Cut-Off Treaty.
In line with its policy on nuclear non-proliferation and disarmament, Mongolia has always been a strong supporter of nuclear-weapon-free zones in various parts of the world.
My Government on its part will continue its efforts towards institutionalizing at the international level its nuclear-weapon-free-status declared back in 1992, and plans to start in the near future consultations on conclusion of a relevant trilateral treaty with our two immediate neighbors - the People’s Republic of China and the Russian Federation. We firmly believe that Mongolia’s internationally recognized and legally-binding nuclear-weapon-free-status could further contribute towards ensuring peace and stability in the region of Northeast Asia and beyond.
Mongolia, this year, again will submit a draft biennial resolution on “Mongolia’s International Security and its Nuclear-Weapon-Free Status” reflecting recent developments, and we look forward to its adoption by consensus as it was the case during the previous sessions.
Mongolia attaches great importance to convening of next year’s NPT Review Conference as a main forum to review the progress on every aspect of the Treaty and make recommendations outlining global nuclear non-proliferation and disarmament strategy for the coming years. And though prospects for the Conference look dim in light of the results, or rather lack of results from the last Preparatory Committee Meeting, we hope that the States Parties to the Treaty would demonstrate their political will, commitment and determination to preserve and strengthen the NPT.
It is of vital importance to break the impasse at the Conference on Disarmament. As a member of the CD, Mongolia finds it completely unacceptable that the sole multilateral disarmament negotiating body has been deadlocked for the last eight years in a row, without being able to agree on a program of work. Mongolia attaches also special importance to the work of the Disarmament Commission, and notes with great regret that it has recently followed the suit of the CD and has also frozen in stalemate, unable to agree on its agenda.
In light of the above, my delegation believes that the current session of the UNGA 1st Committee should be used to help break the deadlock at both the CD and UNDC, taking advantage of the unique position of this body as the most representative forum to discuss and exchange views on issues concerning international security and disarmament. We urge the concerned parties to exercise utmost flexibility and show genuine political will to compromise, to finally put an end to this ludicrous situation.
In conclusion, I note that the efforts aimed at revitalizing the General Assembly should necessarily affect the 1st Committee as a Main Committee of the General Assembly. And indeed, there is room to improve the methods of work and efficiency of this Committee in line with the overall processes undertaken pursuant to UNGA resolution 58/126 and 58/316.
Mongolian delegation is confident that under your able stewardship this Committee will successfully accomplish this and other important missions.
I thank you, Mr. Chairman.