Finland eleventh State Signatory to sign Facility Arrangement

A Facility Arrangement was signed on 12 May 2000 between the Permanent Representative of Finland, Ambassador Tom Gronberg, and the Executive Secretary of the Preparatory Commission (CTBTO PrepCom), Wolfgang Hoffmann. The ceremony took place at the headquarters of CTBTO PrepCom in Vienna. Finland is the eleventh State Signatory, after the Cook Islands, to sign such an agreement. The purpose of the Facility Arrangement is to grant the necessary legal authority to the CTBTO PrepCom to undertake work on Finnish territory to establish or upgrade the two facilities that it is hosting as part of the International Monitoring System (IMS) to verify compliance with the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty (CTBT); an IMS station at Lahti and a radionuclide laboratory at Helsinki. The station is an existing seismic array that has been upgraded recently by the Provisional Technical Secretariat of the CTBTO Preparatory Commission and is contributing data to the International Data Centre (IDC) in Vienna. This seismic primary station will be among the first IMS stations to be certified. The CTBT, signed by Finland on 24 September 1996 and ratified on 15 January 1999, recognizes that halting all nuclear-weapon-test explosions is an effective measure of nuclear disarmament and non-proliferation. Under the Treaty´s global verification regime, a network of 321 monitoring stations - spanning some 90 countries - will be able to record shock waves generated by nuclear explosions and other sources in the atmosphere, under water or underground. The network includes 50 primary and 120 auxiliary seismic stations whose data can be used to help distinguish between possible nuclear explosions and the thousands of earth tremors registered annually. It also includes 80 radionuclide stations to sample radioactive debris which may have been released during a possible nuclear explosion and, in addition, 16 laboratories to assist in the analysis of samples. Furthermore, 60 infrasound and 11 hydroacoustic stations will be able to record acoustic signals in the atmosphere or under water that may have come from a nuclear explosion. The monitoring stations will transmit, via satellite, in near real time, data to the IDC in the CTBTO PrepCom in Vienna, where the data will be used to detect, locate and characterize events. These data and IDC products will be made available to the States Signatories for final analysis.

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Annika Thunborg, Chief, Public Information  
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