Bush Requests Funds for CTBT Monitoring

Article excerpt

The Bush administration has requested funds in its fiscal year 2003 budget submission to Congress for the development of the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty's (CTBT) International Monitoring System, which is intended to detect and thereby deter clandestine nuclear testing. However, the administration is modestly reducing its contribution to the Vienna-based preparatory commission for the CTBT Organization, which is working to establish the monitoring network and make other preparations for the treaty's entry into force.

In keeping with an August decision to end support for activities related to on-site inspections, the 2003 budget request includes $18.2 million to support the monitoring system but does not fund the preparatory commission's other activities, which are largely inspection related and comprise about 5 percent of the commission's budget. A State Department official indicated in an interview that, because the commission will not submit its budget for 2003 until the end of 2002, the requested sum is an estimate based on previous allocations as well as the decision not to fund inspection-related activities. …