Current Affairs

STATEMENT on Mongolia’s nuclear-weapon-free status policy

We, participants of the “International conference on nuclear disarmament issues: global and regional aspects” have met on August 31 – September 1, 2017 in Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia in connection with the marking of the 25th anniversary of Mongolia’s initiative to turn its territory into a nuclear weapon-free zone (NWFZ). The conference has considered the pressing issues of nuclear disarmament as well as the challenges and opportunities thereof, regional measures of promoting nuclear non-proliferation, taking Northeast Asian example and Mongolia’s contribution to promoting stability and predictability in the region.
Though the cold war has ended more than two decades ago, the peace dividend has been short of the high expectations. Continuous modernization of nuclear weapons systems is alarming the international community. The number of nuclear-weapon states has almost doubled. Development of newer types of nuclear weapons and more advanced conventional weapons is blurring the difference between not only these two, but also between strategic and non-strategic nuclear weapons. The possibility of “adjusting” nuclear weapons to variable yields and thus lowering of the threshold of their use makes these weapons more “usable”. In these circumstances, the only effective guarantee against the use or threat of use of nuclear weapons and to ensure “no more hibakusha” is their complete elimination.
The existence of nuclear weapons, and their detonation, whether intentional, accidental or otherwise, threatens humankind, will gravely affect global health, food security, the world climate, etc. The nuclear weapon states have a direct and ultimate responsibility of eliminating their arsenals. However, pending their elimination the non-nuclear-weapon states also have an important role to play, as demonstrated by the adoption of the Treaty on the prohibition of nuclear weapons in July of this year. Establishment of NWFZs are effective regional measures for nuclear disarmament. By prohibiting nuclear weapons in the regions concerned they go beyond the NPT commitments to promote peace and stability and thus contribute to greater regional confidence and stability.
Mongolia’s initiative to establish a single-State NWFZ is an important national measure to ensure its security. It is also a novel international measure to fill a possible grey area in the emerging nuclear-weapon-free world. Today Mongolia enjoys international recognition and support for its active policy of promoting its nuclear-weapon-free status that strengthens peace and regional stability through political and diplomatic means, through persistent dialogue and negotiations on the basis of sovereign equality of states, mutual respect and working jointly for a common cause. The five nuclear-weapon states (P5) have in 2012 made a joint declaration whereby they have committed to respect Mongolia’s status and not to contribute to any act that would violate it. This pledge implies that none of the P5 would try to use Mongolia’s territory for their nuclear-weapons systems including for communication, surveillance, intelligence gathering, training of weapons and other purposes.
The participants also expressed their support for Mongolia’s policy of making its nuclear-weapon-free status an organic part of the East Asian security architecture as well as for its readiness to share its experience in promoting the goal of establishing a Northeast Asian NWFZ.
Mongolia has demonstrated that efforts of every state are important in promoting the common goal of a nuclear-weapon-free world. Its example serves as a source of inspiration for other states not only to address issues of common concern though dialogue and innovative approaches, but also for states that due to their geographical location or for political reasons cannot be part of traditional (regional) NWFZs.
On this occasion, the participants of the conference extended heartfelt congratulations to Mongolia on the 25th anniversary of its initiative and wished even more successes in promoting and institutionalizing further its single-State NWFZ status.

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