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Statement by Chinese Delegation at the First Session of the Preparatory Committee for the 2020 NPT Review Conference on Security Assurance

Mr. Chairman,

As an important issue in the field of nuclear disarmament and nuclear non-proliferation, security assurance is of great realistic significance to the advance of nuclear disarmament process and preventing nuclear weapon proliferation.

Providing non-nuclear-weapon States with security assurance will enhance their sense of security and reduce their motivation to pursue nuclear weapons. The non-nuclear-weapon States are fully justified and reasonable to demand not to be threatened by nuclear weapons and to insist that the security assurance be ensured in a legally-binding manner. Security assurance should be regarded as an important measure to prevent nuclear weapons proliferation and to safeguard international nuclear non-proliferation regime rather than a benefaction given by nuclear-weapon States to non-nuclear-weapon States.

The complete prohibition and thorough destruction of nuclear weapons by nuclear-weapon States, is the fundamental solution to address the issue of security assurances. Pending the ultimate realization of this goal, nuclear-weapon States should unequivocally undertake not to be the first to use nuclear weapons at any time and under any circumstance, and undertake unconditionally not to use or threaten to use nuclear weapons against non-nuclear-weapon States or nuclear-weapon-free zones, and to conclude international legal instruments without delay in this regard. Besides, nuclear-weapon States should diminish the role played by nuclear weapons in their national security policies, abandon the nuclear deterrence policy based on first use of nuclear weapons and refrain from listing any country as target of nuclear strikes or from targeting the nuclear weapons under their control at any country.

Mr. Chairman,

China has all along committed not to be the first to use nuclear weapons at any time and under any circumstance, not to use or threaten to use nuclear weapons against non-nuclear-weapon States or nuclear-weapon-free zones. China always calls upon other nuclear-weapon States to undertake such commitments and conclude an international legally binding instrument in this regard.

China supports the Conference on Disarmament in Geneva to start substantive work on concluding an international legally binding instrument on security assurance to non-nuclear-weapon States at an early date. China holds an open attitude and is willing to positively consider any proposal or measure which will contribute to the progress on security assurances to non-nuclear-weapon States. nuclear-weapon States should support the efforts of non-nuclear-weapon States to establish nuclear-weapon-free-zones and undertake corresponding obligations in a legally binding manner.

With regard to the statement by the United States in Cluster I this morning, I would like to response that China always kept its nuclear capability at the minimal level required for national security. As the country possessing the largest and most advanced nuclear arsenal, the US should abandon its nuclear deterrence policy based on the first use of nuclear weapons, abandon nuclear umbrella, nuclear sharing and other relative policies and practices, stop developing and deploying missile defense systems detrimental to global strategic stability, and concretely prevent the weaponization of and an arms race in outer space, so as to create a favorable environment for nuclear disarmament.

It is the universal aspiration of non-nuclear-weapon States to acquire unconditional and legally binding security assurances, China hopes this aspiration nuclear-weapon States would be realized at an early date and is willing to, together with the international community, continue our endeavor to that end.

Mr. Chairman,

The Chinese delegation has submitted a working paper on the issue of security assurance which elaborates China's relevant positions. and We hope the elements contained therein will be reflected in the report of this PrepCom .

Thank you, Mr. Chairman.

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