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Statement by the President of the Conference on Disarmament, H.E. Amb. Wang Qun at the Conference on Disarmament
2011/03/22

 

Dear colleagues and friends,

We are now, as I stated the other day, witnessing a renaissance in international arms control and disarmament. The international community generally wishes to see multilateral disarmament, especially CD's work revitalized so as to help achieve the goal of security for all through dialogue and mutually beneficial cooperation. We've also seen growing political impetus injected into CD's work by the various parties. Chinese President Hu Jintao and U.S. President Obama have, on many occasions, expressed their unequivocal support to CD's work; UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon has paid three visits to the CD. In addition, more than 20 Foreign Ministers and dignitaries came to address the CD since the beginning of this year, calling for efforts to break its deadlock at the earliest possible date.

I have had nearly 40 bilateral consultations with various parties in the CD before we move into our Presidency. From what has been transpired therefrom, it is my general feeling and impression that: on the one hand, the relevant parties are still apart, and the CD seems to be difficult to break its present impasse; on the other hand, all parties have, vis-a-vis last year, demonstrated greater political will with more constructive attitudes this year. CD has, under the leadership of my predecessors, the distinguished Ambassadors of Canada and Chile, started off on a very good footing with very structured and orderly work conducted. Personally, I have learned a lot from the excellent job they have done.

Dear colleagues and friends,

As one of the permanent members of the Security Council and one of the NPT nuclear weapon states, and as a major developing country, China feels most honoured at this juncture upon assumption of the CD Presidency. In the meantime, we are keenly aware of the historical responsibility on our shoulder. Let me assure you of China's readiness to fully cooperate with all parties in a concerted effort to move the CD into various substantive works as soon as possible so as to promote the multilateral disarmament process.

China, for its part, will work to fulfill its responsibility and mandate as CD Presidency on the basis of the following principles:

    --  Firstly, to give fair and equal weight to concerns of all countries, and to treat each and all core agenda items in a balanced way, with the objective of helping create a good atmosphere for the advancement of the CD work.

    --  Secondly, to help safeguard CD's authority and its democratic tradition and rule of law, and to conduct CD's work in accordance with its Rules of Procedures.

    -- Thirdly, to ensure an open, transparent intergovernmental process and to rely on the collective efforts of all CD member states.

    -- Fourthly, to seek common ground while reserving differences, so as to detect and identify any evolving consensus even in embryo, while maintaining positive momentum.

Dear colleagues and friends,

To advance CD's work, I would like to share with the following line of thinking, general ideas and work plan, on the basis of what have been transpired from my numerous bilateral consultations on how to conduct the CD work for China's Presidency:

Firstly, for the CD track, I envisage to have three plenary meetings devoted to the programme of work, in order to explore our maximum common denominators. In the meantime, I envisage to continue our substantive discussions on the various CD agenda items. Apart from our discussion on the four core agenda items, I also envisage to have appropriate arrangements made to allow delegations to exchange views on the following agenda items or issues: "new types of weapons of mass destruction and new systems of such weapons: radiological weapons", "comprehensive program of Disarmament", "transparency in armaments" as well as "expansion of CD membership" and "participation of civil societies in the work of the CD".

Secondly, to ensure the quality of discussions, China will maintain close communication and consultations with as many members as possible, including those as other P6 members and regional coordinators.

Thirdly, China values the important role and contributions of the observer states in advancing the multilateral disarmament process, and looks forward to having intensified exchanges with them, and the discussion within CD on the question of the expansion of CD membership.

Fourthly, China attaches importance to the role of the civil society and will conduct dialogue and communications on relevant issues with representatives of the civil society and relevant media.

Dear colleagues and friends,

It is not easy at all to come by for CD to have such good momentum, which should be doubly treasured by all of us. Let's join our hands, and work to channel all our efforts into earliest reactivation of CD's substantive work on all fronts in promotion of advancing international arms control, disarmament and non-proliferation process.

Thank you all.

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