International Day against Nuclear Tests: Statement by Foreign Minister Westerwelle

Aug 29, 2013

On the International Day against Nuclear Tests (29 August 2013) Foreign Minister Westerwelle issued the following statement:

“Germany actively supports a global ban on nuclear testing. To date over 2000 nuclear weapons tests have been carried out.
A comprehensive treaty banning nuclear weapons testing would be an important step forward on the path to a world free from nuclear weapons.
Progress in the field of disarmament and arms control will not be achieved over night, yet in this age of globalisation it is indispensable for stronger peace and security.”

Background:

The International Day against Nuclear Tests was created by the United Nations in 2009. Together with European partners and within the framework of the Non‑Proliferation and Disarmament Initiative (NPDI), founded in 2010, Germany is actively campaigning for the treaty’s entry into force, above all in the eight states which have yet to ratify (China, Egypt, Iran, Israel and the US) or sign (India, Pakistan and North Korea) the treaty.

As a steadfast supporter of the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty (CTBT) Germany was invited to join the “Friends of the CTBT” in May 2013.

Germany is the third‑largest donor to the Preparatory Commission for the Comprehensive Nuclear‑Test‑Ban Treaty Organization (CTBTO), headquartered in Vienna. The CTBTO’s monitoring stations played a key role in exposing North Korean nuclear testing. Although the Test Ban Treaty is not yet in force, the verification system functions reliably, not least thanks to German contributions.

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Disarmament, Arms Control and Non-Proliferation

Disarmament and arms control are central elements of the global security architecture. They are not concerns of the past, rather, pressing challenges of the present and of the future.