Some New Ideas, Proposals; a Basis for Future Action

UN Chronicle, September 1988 | Go to article overview

Some New Ideas, Proposals; a Basis for Future Action


The mass of ideas and proposals on disarmament-some new, some reaffirmedemanating from the third special session constitute a major contribution to the disarmament process. Some of these emerged in the general debate, others appeared in documents. Even though they were not formalized in a Concluding Document, experts believe they will constitute an informal agenda for disarmament over the next few years. A selection from those proposals follows.

Nuclear disarmament

* A timetable to gradually eliminate all nuclear weapons as a follow-up to the INF Treaty (Nonaligned States).

* A comprehensive, phased programme to completely eliminate nuclear weapons by the year 2000 (Warsaw Treaty States), (a three- stage action plan for implementation by 2010, India).

* Convening an international conference on nuclear disarmament with the participation of all nuclear-weapon States to discuss destruction of nuclear weapons (China).

* A special multilateral negotiating body for nuclear disarmament and the total elimination of nuclear weapons (Romania).

* An international convention calling for non-first-use of nuclear weapons by those States possessing them and non-use or threat of use against non-nuclear-weapon States and nuclear-weapon-free zones (Non-aligned States, China).

* Separate negotiations on reducing tactical nuclear weapons in Europe, and their subsequent elimination (Warsaw Treaty States).

* Accession to the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons by all States that have not yet acceded to it (United States, Nordic nations).

* Set of measures to strengthen the non-proliferation regime, including acceptance by nonnuclear-weapon States of fullscope IAEA safeguards, and cessation of production of fissionable material for weapon purposes (Denmark Finland Iceland Norway and Sweden).

* Securing a declaration by all nuclear States as to whether or not their nuclear vessels entering foreign ports are carrying nuclear weapons (USSR).

* A global nuclear-weapon-free corridor to disengage the USSR and United States nuclear forces, to be created by sequential linkage of proposed nuclear-weapon-free zones, corridors and zones of peace in Northern and Central Europe, in the Balkans, the Middle East, the Indian Ocean, South Asia and North-East Asia. (Creation of a nuclear-weapon-free zone in NorthEast Asia, beginning with denuclearization and neutralization of the Korean peninsula.)

* Measures to establish a nuclear-weapon-free zone in the Middle East (Egypt).

* Creation of a nuclear-weaponfree corridor in Central Europe (German Democratic Republic).

* An international convention banning military attacks against nuclear facilities (Netherlands, Sweden, Argentina).

* A new comprehensive United Nations study on nuclear weapons (Sweden).

Arms race in space

* International treaties to ban space strike weapons and antisatellite weapons and ensure immunity of space objects; an international verification system on non-deployment of all weapons in outer space; a world space organization to promote the peaceful activities of States in outer space (Warsaw Trea;y States).

* A UN agency to process and interpret space images (France).

Conventional disarmament

* Call for military withdrawal by great Powers from positions beyond their frontiers (Non-aligned States) and elimination of foreign military bases (USSR).

* Negotiations on substantial reduction of armed forces and conventional armaments in Europe; simultaneous dissolution of NATO and Warsaw Pact alliances (Warsaw Treaty States).

* Reduction by all States of military expenditures by at least 50 per cent by the year 2000 (Romania).

* Creating a UN committee on the peaceful use of seas and oceans (Romania).

* A UN register of conventional arms transfers (United Kingdom, Nepal)

* A comprehensive study on arms transfers aimed at elaborating comprehensive measures to control such transfers (Colombia, Peru). …

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