November 22, 2002

China Denounces US NMD at UN Conference

China's representative at the UN disarmament conference issued a warning on Thursday on US plans for a controversial missile defence system, denouncing "unilateralism" in foreign and defence policy.

Chinese ambassador Hu Xiaodi told fellow delegates that major issues had met with "unmerited defiance".

"The Cold War mentality featured in power politics should be abandoned," he said.

"Unilateralism will come to no avail. It brings nothing to peace or development and cannot help us solve the challenges with which we are presented," Hu said.

He said that space was being militarised, that the 1972 Anti-Ballistic Treaty (ABM) was being attacked, that negotiations on verification for biological weapons had failed and that the 1996 Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty was not being enforced.

"All this can only have a profoundly negative impact on international security at the beginning of the 21st century," Hu said.

China has made no secret of its opposition to plans by Bush to scrap the ABM treaty, signed in 1972 between Washington and Moscow, in order to be able to build the missile shield.

The Bush administration in July also rejected a draft agreement on enforcing a 1972 convention banning bacteriological weapons.

China has consistently reiterated its support for maintaining the ABM treaty, which prohibits the kind of missile shield the Bush administration is seeking to develop, and in July signed an agreement with Russia pledging to back the pact.

"Last year, the whole international community, including the five permanent members of the Security Council, recognized the ABM treaty as a cornerstone of strategic global security," Hu said. "This year, we are hearing arguments in favor of total abrogation of the treaty."

Russia, China and many other countries in the world have expressed their worries that the US plan for national missile defence would trigger a new round of arms race.

Hu called on the conference to create an ad hoc committee to discuss measures that can avoid "an arms race in space."

(Chinadaily.com.cn 08/31/2001)

In This Series
NMD System to Trigger New Arms Race

NMD Will Bear Grave Consequences



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