Arrangement for CTBT Monitoring Stations
I have today reaffirmed Australia's strong
commitment to reinforcing the international regime which prevents
the proliferation of nuclear weapons.
On behalf of the Government, I have signed
an arrangement with the Preparatory Commission of the Comprehensive
Nuclear Test Ban Treaty Organisation (CTBTO) to facilitate the
establishment and management of nuclear test monitoring stations
The facility arrangement was signed on behalf
of the CTBTO by its Executive Secretary, Dr Wolfgang Hoffmann,
during Dr Hoffmann's visit to Canberra today.
The CTBT has already established a powerful
international norm against nuclear testing and this norm will
be established in international law when the Treaty enters into
force, banning for all time all explosive nuclear tests.
The Treaty will therefore form a vital component
of the international nuclear non-proliferation and disarmament
regime. Australia has signed and ratified the CTBT and played
a leading role in bringing the Treaty before the United Nations
for adoption in 1996.
As a strong supporter of the CTBT, Australia
has in recent months made vigorous efforts to encourage further
ratifications of the CTBT, including representations either made
or about to be made to 36 countries. I warmly welcome recent
further ratifications of the Treaty, including by Turkey, Lithuania
and Bangladesh. The CTBT now has 155 states signatories and
54 states parties.
An international monitoring network will be
set up under the Treaty to detect any explosive nuclear tests.
When completed, the network will have 337 facilities around
the world, including 21 in Australia.
In my discussion with Dr Hoffmann, I welcomed
the work done by the CTBTO toward establishing the International
Monitoring System. Work on Australia's 21 facilities is proceeding
Australia is also a strong advocate for the
development of a robust On Site Inspection capacity so that any
suspected breach of the Treaty can be investigated effectively.
I welcomed advice of renewed efforts by Dr Hoffmann's organisation
to advance that important aspect of the CTBT.