UNITED NATIONS, May 31 (Xinhua) — China on Tuesday called for true multilateralism in dealing with the issue of non-proliferation.
“Non-proliferation is a global challenge. To address the issue, multilateral cooperation and the leadership of the UN are essential,” China’s permanent representative to the United Nations, Zhang Jun, told the open consultations on the comprehensive review of the status of the implementation of Security Council Resolution 1540, the first such resolution binding obligations on all UN member states to take and enforce effective measures against the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction (WMDs), their means of delivery and related materials. He called for upholding “true multilateralism” in this regard. “All parties should uphold a common, comprehensive, cooperative, and sustainable security concept, attach importance to each other’s legitimate security concerns, eliminate drivers for proliferation, and stay committed to universal and common security,” said the ambassador. Zhang noted that it is important to uphold the purposes and principles of the UN Charter, strengthen the collective security mechanism with the UN at the center, defend the authority of the Security Council, and remain committed to solving non-proliferation hotspot issues through peaceful means including dialogue and consultation.
Talking about sanctions, the envoy said that “sanctions alone won’t solve these issues or risks,” adding that on the contrary, “they only lead to escalating tensions and spillover risks.” “Unilateral sanctions and the so-called long-arm jurisdiction harm the legitimate interests of other countries. They don’t have the support of the public, and should be abandoned,” he said. The ambassador underscored that the proliferation of WMDs and their means of delivery bears on international peace, security, and stability, noting that “Resolution 1540 adopted in 2004 is the first Security Council resolution on non-proliferation and a major pillar of the international nonproliferation efforts.” “Thanks to the tireless efforts of the international community, the international non-proliferation consensus continues to deepen, the non-proliferation regime keeps improving, and international cooperation in this respect is seeing steady progress,” he said. “International efforts to address the proliferation activities of non-state actors are also effectively enhanced.” Talking about consolidating the international non-proliferation system, Zhang pointed out that Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT) is the cornerstone of the international disarmament and non-proliferation system, and a major component of the post-war international security system. “Countries shouldn’t be allowed to pick and choose, apply double standards, or take selective approaches. We should firmly oppose any erosion or hollowing out of the treaty,” noted the ambassador.
Zhang slammed some countries, saying that they “ignored the objections of the international community, conducted cooperation on nuclear submarines, and insisted on introducing weapon-grade nuclear materials into Asia Pacific, which are a clear violation of the purposes and principles of the NPT, and have led to serious nuclear proliferation risks.” “Such irresponsible actions need our close attention. At the same time, countries should further enhance the universality of the NPT, the Biological Weapons Convention, and the Chemical Weapons Convention, and use the opportunity of the review conferences of these treaties to make sure that these treaties are implemented in a comprehensive, effective, and balanced manner,” he said. The ambassador also called for using science and technology for peaceful purposes and conducting international cooperation in this regard, which “is an inalienable right of all states by international law.” Speaking about China’s support to the 1540 Committee, established pursuant to Security Council Resolution 1540, adopted in 2004, Zhang said that China supports the committee in creating a reasonable program of work. “The community should continue to promote substantially the comprehensive review of the resolution, and conduct objective evaluations of all countries’ implementation of the resolution,” he said.
“It should attach importance to the proliferation risks caused by emerging technologies, and provide effective and actionable recommendations on addressing the relevant non-proliferation risks and challenges. It should also further promote international cooperation in this area, improve the effectiveness of its assistance programs, and facilitate the full and effective implementation of the resolution,” Zhang added. “China is firmly opposed to the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction and their means of delivery,” said the envoy. “We have always strictly honored our non-proliferation international obligations, continued to improve our export control mechanisms and capacity building, and contributed to enhancing non-proliferation efforts at the national, regional, and international levels with concrete actions.”