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CTBT: Massari briefs Security Council on last week Article XIV Conference

NEW YORK, SEPTEMBER 27 – Only through universal engagement the world will be free on nuclear weapons’ tests, the Italian Permanent Representative to the United Nations, Ambassador Maurizio Massari, said today in his remarks to the UN Security Council on the outcomes of the 12th Article XIV CTBT Ministerial Conference co-chaired by Italy and South Africa last week on the sidelines of the General Assembly.

The Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty (CTBT) contains a special mechanism to promote its entry into force – a conference designed to facilitate this objective takes place every other year. While its official designation is the Conference on Facilitating Entry into Force of the CTBT, it is more commonly known as the “Article XIV Conference” in accordance with the relevant Treaty article. This Conference took place in New York and Vienna, on September 23 and 24 2021, the year that marked the 25th anniversary of the Treaty’s opening for signature. The 11th Article XIV Conference took place in 2019 in New York.

This time, said Massari, each ratifying State seized the opportunity to reaffirm the urgency of the entry into force of the CTBT, and the hope for its universalization, highlighting its essential value as a landmark agreement on the path towards disarmament and non-proliferation.

The Final Declaration of the Conference was adopted by consensus. It reiterates the States’ overwhelming support for the Treaty’s universalization and the urgency of its entry into force and progress made towards the Treaty’s universalization since the last Article XIV Conference, attaching significant importance to the signature and ratification by Cuba and the ratification by the Union of Comoros, which brought the number of ratifying States to 170, and that of States signatories to 185.

The Final Declaration urges the eight remaining Annex-II States to sign and ratify the Treaty without further delay and calls on all States to refrain from nuclear test explosions. It also expresses condemnation for the six nuclear tests conducted by the Democratic Republic of Korea since 2006 and reaffirms the significance of the full implementation of all relevant Security Council Resolutions and of a complete denuclearization of the Korean peninsula.

The Declaration reaffirms the commitment of all States to provide political, technical, financial support to the CTBTO PrepCom, and commends the establishment and functioning of the International Monitoring System and the International Data Centre as core facilities in a view to enhancing on-site inspection capabilities and forging a global and fully operational verification regime.

It sets out concrete and actionable steps toward the swift entry into force of the Treaty and its universalization, among which:

encouraging further signature and ratification of the Treaty, even through the designation of coordinators to promote the Treaty’s universalization; recognizing the role of the Group of Eminent Persons in assisting the promotion of the Treaty’s objectives; encouraging the organization of regional activities, as well as education and training initiatives; encouraging cooperation with intergovernmental and non-governmental organizations, as well as the civil society.

“Italy welcomes the United States’ commitment, expressed during the Article XIV Conference, to supporting the entry into force of the CTBT through dedicated outreach initiatives and education and calls on the international community to keep supporting the completion of the CTBT’S monitoring system even prior to the entry into force of the Treaty, in order to improve its capacity to provide accurate data analysis”, said Massari: “In this regard, Italy remains firmly committed to the strengthening of the International Monitoring System (IMS), including through our national seismic station and radionuclide laboratory”. (@OnuItalia)

Il giornale Italiano delle Nazioni Unite. Ha due redazioni, una a New York, l’altra a Roma.

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