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  Library Treaties Non-Proliferation Treaty, Indonesian Statement, April 27, 1998

Statement from H. E. Ambassador Makarim

Mr. Chairman,

I should like, on behalf of my delegation, to congratulate you on your unanimous election as Chairman of the Second Session of the Preparatory Committee (PrepCom) for the year 2000

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Review Conference of the Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT). Fully aware of your personal qualities as well as your expertise with the disarmament issues, we remain fully confident that this session will further advance our work on the issues which have been identified during the first session. Let me also extend our felicitations to the other members of the Bureau upon their election.

I would remiss in my duty if I do not express the profound appreciation of my delegation to Ambassador Patokallio of Finland for the able manner with which he presided over the First PrepCom session held in New York last year and laid a solid foundation for our endeavours during this session.

Mr. Chairman,

The NPT today has reached a critical turning point in the onward march of our efforts to achieve its proclaimed objectives. In these endeavours, Indonesia and other Non-Aligned countries have made significant contributions to the achievements of the 1995 Review and Extension Conference which, as is well-known, decided to adopt principles and objectives for non-proliferation and disarmament as well as strengthening the review process which have established new parameters for the elimination of nuclear armaments.

However, it cannot be denied that since the conclusion of that Conference, the Treaty has not fully met its objectives nor the expectations of the vast majority of its signatories. Vertical proliferation has not ceased. The lack of further nuclear arms reduction and ominous signs of ballistic missile defence systems have created new elements of uncertainty and insecurity. Some of the nuclear-weapon states have long stymied efforts to agree on a common approach to a legally binding instrument against the use or threat of use of nuclear weapons against non-nuclear-weapon states. Unilateral and restrictive measures outside the NPT regime on transfer of nuclear material and technology which negatively impact upon the application of peaceful uses of nuclear energy continue to be enforced. It is clear that the ambiguities and short-comings in the functioning of the NPT and the compromises achieved in 1995 cannot forever conceal the failure to fulfill political commitments so as to make the Treaty equally applicable for all its states parties.

It is against this backdrop that the importance of this session cannot be overemphasized as it offers yet another opportunity for the Parties to the Treaty to be better prepared to assess its functioning, remove its inequities and agree on a common strategy that will ensure full compliance by all state parties to all of its provisions.

Although the end of the Cold War has reduced the threat of nuclear war, it has not eliminated the danger posed by nuclear weapons. Much of the insecurity in the world stems from the tact that the international community has not been able to abolish nuclear armaments. Self-laudatory achievements aimed at fulfilling the legal obligations under Article VI of the Treaty cannot conceal that there are still an estimated 36,000 nuclear weapons with their inherent dangers. It has long been recognized that nuclear disarmament is critical to international peace and security. The diffusion of military powers, the widespread development of dual-purpose technologies, nuclear terrorism, the safety of nuclear infra-structures and other nuclear issues cannot be effectively resolved by nuclear-weapon states alone and call for the cooperation of all member states. Disarmament has long seized to be a bilateral affair and has in fact become multilateral - whether global, regional or sub-regional. Our priority in the disarmament agenda should therefore continue to be one of seeking further deep reductions of nuclear stockpiles with a view to their ultimate elimination. The establishment of a special committee in the Conference on Disarmament for negotiations on nuclear disarmament is long overdue.

The consideration of the question of fissile material cut-oft has shown that those who already possess fissile material in huge quantities, while willing to end their production, are unwilling to give up existing stockpiles. Consequently, such an approach would serve non-proliferation but not disarmament objective and would lead to the perpetuation and industrialization of the existing imbalance. A ban on both past and future production would, however, constitute a significant step towards fulfilling the obligations contained in Article VI of the NPT. Hence, a ban on tissue material must necessarily contain both non-proliferation and disarmament provisions in order to represent a step towards the abolition of nuclear weapons. In this regard, my delegation would endorse the proposal for the commencement of negotiations to a ban on existing material which also ban future production of weapon-usable fissile material. As long as a cut-off agreement is based on universality and non-discrimination, it can constitute an incremental process of eliminating nuclear armaments.

Indonesia has consistently called for a legally binding international instrument on security assurances to the non-nuclear-weapon states which should be unconditional, comprehensive and unlimited in scope, framework or duration. It is a legitimate aspiration of these states which have renounced the acquisition of nuclear weapons to be protected against the use or threat of use of these weapons. The 1995 Conference called upon the States Parties to consider further steps on security assurances that could take form of an internationally binding legal convention. We should now undertake a reappraisal of this question in the light also of recent positive developments in the international arena leading to the adoption of a protocol to the NPT similar to the Biological Weapons Convention verification protocol now being negotiated.

The 1995 conference has also called for the establishment of additional nuclear-weapon-free zones by the time of the Review Conference to be held in the year 2000. In this context, it emphasized the importance of support by the nuclear weapons states for the relevant protocols which is indispensable for the effectiveness of these zones. Regional efforts in the recent past have once again proven to be successful and hailed as significant contributions to nuclear disarmament. These positive developments reflect an irreversible trend towards the creation of such zones in areas where they do not exist leading ultimately to a denuclearized world. Regrettably, however, some of the nuclear powers have not acceded to the Protocol of the Southeast Asia Nuclear-Weapon-Free Zone which entered into force during March of last year and which reaffirmed the obligations undertaken in the NPT. In our view, these and other related questions such as the establishment of nuclear-weapon-free zones in other parts of the world as well as modalities for cooperation between the zones that already exist warrant the serious consideration of this PrepCom session, with a view to its inclusion in the agenda of the 2000 Review Conference.

Mr. Chairman,

Assuring the orderly flow of nuclear material and technology for peaceful purposes to the developing countries without leading to weapons proliferation is an issue of great importance. In 1995 we reaffirmed the validity of Article IV of the Treaty and the inalienable right of all Parties to the Treaty for full access to the peaceful uses of nuclear energy. This was reinforced by provisions for transparency. dialogue and cooperation in nuclear-related export controls as well as the prohibition of attacks or threat of attacks on nuclear facilities devoted to civilian purposes. What is needed now is to translate these objectives into a formula for enhanced cooperation involving greater willingness on the part of the developed nations to meet the pressing needs of developing countries for science and technology for civilian purposes.

Against this backdrop, Mr. Chairman, our deliberations should focus on issues of concern to all Parties and seek to achieve the objectives contained in the Preamble as well as to implement the provisions of the NPT in their entirety and the commitments undertaken at the 1995 Conference. As many key issues of substantive nature need to be resolved to assure the success of the 2000 review exercise, a business-like and mission-oriented approach should be the guiding principles and calling for restraint in discussion in order to pave the way for meaningful negotiations. It also calls for the maximum use of time for discussion of substantive issues while promoting flexibility structured and constructive dialogue leading to agreements on outstanding issues. In these endeavours, we have before us concepts, ideas and approaches that were initiated during the First Prep. Com. session which call for refinement and reassessment.

It is essential to ensure, as in the past, that at the conclusion of this session, a report on its work would be finalized which would constitute a rolling text that is dynamic and responsive to the changed international context. In this way, we can lay the groundwork for an enhanced review process leading to the further consolidation of the non-proliferation regime for the benefit of all mankind.

Thank you, Mr. Chairman.