Posted by Alli (18.104.22.168) on January 24, 2002 at 11:55:31:
In Reply to: & now for a message from the wankers... posted by Alli on January 24, 2002 at 11:53:16:
U.S. Urges Tough Moves Against Spread of Arms
GENEVA (Reuters) - The United States sought on Thursday to intensify pressure on states it said aided the spread of nuclear, chemical and biological arms, insisting they be held accountable for violating international commitments.
In a speech to the Conference on Disarmament, U.S. Under Secretary of State John Bolton vowed Washington would use "every method at our disposal" to ensure extremist groups did not get weapons of mass destruction after the September attacks.
The Geneva talks should also make this a priority, he said.
Bolton accused Iraq and North Korea of violating the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty and interfering with monitoring by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA).
These violations must cease and "I caution those who think they can pursue nuclear weapons without detection by the IAEA -- the United States and its allies will prove you wrong," he told delegates from the 66 member countries of the Conference.
Iraqi and North Korean envoys to the talks, the world's main negotiating forum on arms control, denied the charges.
The Conference, which holds three sessions a year, has long been deadlocked over a proposed ban on arms in outer space and a call to negotiate a halt to production of nuclear bomb-making fissile material (plutonium and highly-enriched uranium).
Bolton reiterated U.S. opposition to the first, where it is almost a lone voice, but called for rapid action on the second.
The mood at the talks was soured by a U.S. move late last year to block efforts to negotiate a tighter ban on biological weapons aimed at making the pact more easily verifiable.
Washington said the scheme would not work and could at the same time expose its defense and industrial establishments to spying. However, other states, including some allies, accused the United States of turning its back on multilateralism.
"He (Bolton) basically called for fighting terrorism with all methods, and to hell with the Conference, or it should only be an instrument for fighting terrorism," said a senior Western diplomat.
THREAT TO SECURITY
Bolton denied the "unilateralist" charge, insisting the U.S. commitment to multilateral nonproliferation regimes had never been as strong.
He stressed the United States regarded the proliferation of nuclear weapons technology as a "direct threat to international security and will treat it accordingly," adding:
"The same holds true for nations that traffic in deadly chemical and biological weapons technology and missile systems."
Conspicuous by its absence was any specific reference in the speech to Iran, which the United States has accused of trying to acquire nuclear, chemical and biological weapons.
The Bush administration has urged Russia to end its nuclear technology relationship with Iran but Bolton's speech avoided any direct finger-pointing at Moscow in this regard.
The undersecretary, who oversees international security issues, said that with few exceptions, extremist groups have not acquired and cannot acquire weapons of mass destruction without the support of nation-states.
But at least a dozen nations were not controlling their companies' involvement in missile proliferation, he said.
He did not name the countries but said most of the deals were "serious and could result in U.S. sanctions against these companies," as was imposed against a Chinese company last year.
The Conference on Disarmament should forge new restraints against the spread of nuclear, biological and chemical weapons, Bolton said, but did not elaborate.
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