Strong outcome urged for NPT Review Conference

  • Georgina te Heuheu
Disarmament and Arms Control

Disarmament Minister Georgina te Heuheu today urged all states to the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) to continue to push for a strong outcome from the Review Conference presently underway in New York.

"With three weeks remaining there is still much water to go under the bridge.  All states have to remain constructively engaged and strive for a balanced outcome which advances the NPT and the regime it underpins."

Under the NPT the non-nuclear-weapon states agree not to acquire nuclear weapons in return for access to nuclear technology for peaceful purposes.  Importantly the nuclear-weapon states undertake to work towards nuclear disarmament.

Mrs te Heuheu has just returned from leading New Zealand's delegation to the Conference in New York. 

"A Review Conference is only held every five years and the issues at the heart of the Treaty are of a global nature - we are all impacted by the proliferation of nuclear weapons.  New Zealand places great importance on the NPT and this Review Conference and I was pleased to lead our delegation there."

While there the Minister delivered two statements to the UN and met with the Secretary General of the UN.

"I also met Ministers from Ireland, Indonesia, Australia, Brazil, Nigeria, Norway, the Philippines and Sweden plus high level officials from a number of countries, including the United States, Egypt, and Japan."

"In New York I pressed New Zealand's case for progress on nuclear disarmament and non-proliferation.  It was clear to me that the overwhelming majority of countries are working to try and secure a successful outcome to this very important meeting."

"I was particularly pleased with the decision of Papua New Guinea to ratify the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty and the decision of the United States to move forward on the South Pacific Nuclear-Free Zone.  The United States also made a very significant announcement about increased transparency of its nuclear holdings," Mrs te Heuheu said.