G8 to intensify efforts towards entry into force of the CTBT

New High-Res Verification Animations Online


Four new flash animations on the CTBTO website illustrate how the monitoring technologies of the CTBTO global alarm system work. The 337 facilities of the International Monitoring System (IMS) use the seismic, hydroacoustic, infrasound and radionuclide technologies to detect nuclear explosions underground, underwater and in the atmosphere.

The new animations show in an easily understandable way how each type of monitoring station is set up to detect specific signs of a nuclear explosion and how this information is then transmitted to the International Data Centre in Vienna for analysis. 

Read more here.

Saint Vincent and the Grenadines signs the CTBT


Saint Vincent and the Grenadines is the 181st State to have signed the CTBT.  The signing ceremony took place on 2 July 2009 at the United Nations Headquarters in New York. In the region of Latin America and the Caribbean, 30 of 33 States are now Signatories to the CTBT and 28 of those have already ratified it. 

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G8 Statement on Non-Proliferation

(Italian G8 Presidency)

The G8 Statement on Non-Proliferation adopted at the recent G8 summit in L'Aquilia, Italy, recognizes the CTBT as "one of the principal instruments of the international security architecture and a key measure of non-proliferation and disarmament." The G8 declare that they "welcome the announcement made by the President of the United States of America that he has decided to seek ratification of the [CTBT] and we will intensify our efforts towards the early entry into force and universalisation of the CTBT."

Read the full Statement here (PDF)

G8 Calls Upon all Countries to Sign NPT

(Times of India)

Reflecting on the G8 Statement on Non-Proliferation, the Times of India describes the strong support of the G8 for the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) and the CTBT as a potential source of discord between India and the developed world. The article points out U.S. President Obama's intention to submit the CTBT for ratification by the U.S. Senate.

Read the full article here

Russian Nuclear Agreement a Good Start

(San Francisco Gate)

U.S. Senator Dianne Feinstein (California) has welcomed the preliminary agreement between U.S. President Obama and Russian President Medvedev on deep cuts to both nations' deployed strategic nuclear arsenals. She points out that this is only the first of many steps towards the vision of a nuclear-free world, adding that one the of next steps will be making ratification of the CTBT "a priority in the U.S. Senate".

Read the full article here

Defending U.S. Leadership on Disarmament

(Carnegie Endowment)

Three experts from the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, James Acton, Pierre Goldschmidt and George Perkovich, discuss an article by Senator Jon Kyl and Richard Perle critical of the vision of a nuclear-weapon free world and the CTBT. On the issue of the CTBT's verifiability, they argue that the article ignores " the overwhelming majority of scientific expertise". To garner international support for strengthening the non-proliferation regime, the U.S. should "take its disarmament commitments seriously" and make "[r]atification of the CTBT before the 2010 NPT Review Conference ... a top priority."

Read the full article here

Toward a Nuclear Freeze in South Asia

(Arms Control Association)

Daryl Kimball, Executive Director of the Washington-based Arms Control Association, urges the U.S. administration to use its leverage in order to curtail the ongoing nuclear arms race between India and Pakistan and to "re-establish nuclear restraint and arms control as a top priority for the region". In particular, Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton "should not hesitate to put the CTBT back on the U.S.-Indian bilateral agenda." (Image: crater from the first South Asian nuclear test, a "peaceful nuclear explosion" conducted by India at Pokhran in Rajasthan in May 1974).

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Obama’s Big Missile Test

(New York Times)

Through his agreement with Russia on the reduction of operational strategic nuclear weapons, U.S. President Barack Obama has made a good start towards the implementation of his vision of a world without nuclear weapons. Yet to implement this vision at home, one of the necessary steps will be ratification of the CTBT by the U.S. Senate, which will also require support from a number of Republican senators.

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Petition for the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty

(Healthy Environment ALliance of Utah)

The Healthy Environment ALliance of Utah (HEAL) has launched a petition campaigning for U.S. ratification of the CTBT. The organization points out that the CTBT would, once in force, not only protect the health of Uthans by legally banning all forms of nuclear testing, but it would also serve U.S. security and non-proliferation interests. Supporters can sign the petition to Senators Orrin Hatch and Bob Bennett from Utah online.

Read the full petition here

Battle Lines Being Drawn in the CTBT Debate

(Nuclear Threat Initiative-Issue Brief)

In this issue brief, James Martin Center for Nonproliferation Studies research assistant Keegan McGrath, discusses the recent report released by the Commission on the Strategic Posture of the United States, with regards to U.S. ratification of the CTBT. Within the report, several Commission members remonstrate as to why the U.S. should not ratify the CTBT. McGrath analyses these arguments, stating that: “Many of the claims misrepresent the objectives of the treaty, the negotiating history of the CTBT, and the scientific data available on verification capabilities.” In addition, he concludes that:”… none of the assertions contained within the report alter the overall net benefit to U.S. national interests of ratifying the treaty.”

Read the full article here