Indonesia's Foreign Minister announces
his country will soon ratify the
Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty

New York, 4 May 2010

“We hope that our decision to ratify the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty (CTBT) will be a positive incentive for other States to follow suit,” stated Indonesia’s Foreign Minister, Marty Natalegawa, during a press briefing on the second day of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) Review Conference in New York. His statement followed an announcement at the Conference on 3 May that Indonesia is “initiating the process of ratification of the CTBT.” He underscored that Indonesia has taken this step in view of the recent positive momentum on nuclear disarmament and non-proliferation issues.

Indonesia’s announcement that it will soon ratify the Treaty “is extremely important for the entry into force of the CTBT”, said Tibor Tóth, the Executive Secretary of the Preparatory Commission for the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty Organization (CTBTO).  “With Indonesia’s ratification, we’ll only have eight countries to go.”

Indonesia has historically played a key role in promoting nuclear disarmament and non-proliferation. It is a member of the Southeast Asia Nuclear-Weapon-Free Zone (SEANWFZ) and signed the CTBT on 24 September 1996, the day it opened for signature.  Ratification of the CTBT will be of particular significance because Indonesia is one of the 44 nuclear holder States that must ratify the Treaty before it can enter into force.

Indonesia hosts six seismic stations, which are fully operational and part of the CTBT’s globe spanning International Monitoring System (IMS). The IMS monitors the Earth for any signs of nuclear explosions.

In addition to the political benefits of CTBTO membership, the Treaty’s monitoring data offer a number of potential civil and scientific applications, including their use for tsunami warning purposes. Indonesia signed a Tsunami Warning Arrangement with the CTBTO on 10 November 2008, which enables Indonesian authorities to issue tsunami warnings earlier than ever before.

The CTBT bans all nuclear explosions. 182 countries have signed the Treaty and 151 have also ratified it. Thirty-five of the nuclear holder States that must ratify the Treaty before it can enter into force have already done so. Besides Indonesia, the eight remaining countries are China, the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Egypt, India, Indonesia, Iran, Israel, Pakistan and the United States.

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