Historic Two Days for CTBT at Article XIV Conference
International Leaders Rally in Support of CTBT
There was unprecedented high level attendance at a ministerial conference to promote the entry into force of the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty (CTBT). The conference, which took place at the United Nations Headquarters in New York on 24 and 25 September 2009, adopted a final declaration in consensus calling on oustanding States to sign and ratify the Treaty. U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton represented the United States who participated for the first time in the conference since 1999. "After a ten year absence from this conference, America stands ready to renew its leadership role in the non-proliferation regime," Clinton stated.
Unique Day for CTBT on 13th anniversary of opening for signature
On 24 September 2009, thirteen years exactly after the CTBT was opened for signature, the United Nations Security Council summit meeting at Heads of State level discussed nuclear non-proliferation and disarmament issues including the CTBT and its entry into force. About 40 Foreign Ministers were present at a two-day high level gathering to promote the CTBT’s entry into force which began on the same day. As Tibor Tóth, Executive Secretary for the Preparatory Commission for the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty Organization (CTBTO) put it, it was a "nuclear non-proliferation powerhouse".
Saint Vincent and the Grenadines Becomes 150th Country to Ratify the CTBT
The hallmark figure of 150 Treaty ratifications was reached when Saint Vincent and the Grenadines ratified the CTBT on 23 September 2009. The ratification came a day ahead of a conference to promote the entry into force of the Treaty and a historic UN Security Council meeting at Heads of State level on nuclear non-proliferation and disarmament.
States Urged to Seize Momentum at Historic CTBT Conference
(Article XIV Conference)
"The momentum is rare, and we must seize this momentum," stressed the UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon at the sixth Conference to promote the entry into force of CTBT. The participation of U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton was particularly significant. It was seen as demonstrating the United States' renewed commitment to nuclear non-proliferation and disarmament. "We will work in the months ahead both to seek the advice and consent of the United States Senate to ratify the treaty," Clinton said and conluded her address by saying: "We are happy to be back". Speakers also included U.N. Messenger of Peace Michael Douglas who proclaimed that "there is a new wind blowing." There were repeated calls on countries to take advantage of the political momentum and to complete the requirements needed for the treaty's entry into force, i.e. to sign and ratify the Treaty. Particular mention is being made in this regard of hopeful signs coming from China, Indonesia and the United States. The final declaration adopted by consensus was then brought to the doorstep of a UN Security Council summit on nuclear non-proliferation and disarmament.
Read the following articles for more information on the events of the Article XIV Conference.
Leaders Remark on Need for Entry Into Force of CTBT During General Assembly Meeting
(United Nations General Assembly)
On the eve of the CTBT Conference, leaders expressed their support for the entry into force of the CTBT during the United Nations General Assembly meeting. "We will move forward with ratification of the Test Ban Treaty, and work with others to bring the Treaty into force so that nuclear testing is permanently prohibited," U.S. President Barack Obama promised during his first ever official visit to the United Nations.
Read the following articles for more information on what was said about the CTBT during the General Assembly.
Historic Security Council Meeting on Nuclear Non-Proliferation and Disarmament Strengthens CTBT
(United Nations Security Council)
Heads of State gathered for an historic Security Council Summit on Nuclear Non-proliferation and Disarmament, chaired by U.S. President Barack Obama. The meeting took place concurrently with the Article XIV Conference, complementing the promotion of the early entry into force of the CTBT. As part of the Security Council Resolution adopted unanimously at the summit, the council called upon all States "to refrain from conducting a nuclear test explosion and to sign and ratify the Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty (CTBT), thereby bringing the treaty into force at an early date".
The following article contains the text of the UN Security Council Resolution 1887 and summaries of all statements made by Heads of State during the summit meeting.
Read the following articles for more information on the UN Security Council meeting.
Nuclear Testing on Korean Peninsula in May Demonstrated Success of Test-Ban Treaty’s Monitoring System
The new political prominence of the CTBT has caused fresh looks at the decection capabilities of its unique verification regime. The U.S. National Academy of Sciences was commissioned to undertake a study to provide vital information on the technical capabilities to detect nuclear explosions to U.S. policy makers. Meanwhile, participants at the CTBT Conference at the United Nations in New York praised the performance of the CTBTO's global verification regime following the nuclear test in May conducted by the Democratic People's Republic of Korea. Verification would is "giving teeth" to disarmament and non-proliferation agreements such as the CTBT.
Read the following articles for more information on what was said about the verification capabilities of the CTBTO leading up to the conference.