I. International Security and Arms Control Situation
Peace, development and cooperation have become the trend of the times in the current world. World multi-polarization and economic globalization are developing in depth, and science and technology are advancing by leaps and bounds. Countries and regions have constantly strengthened their exchanges and cooperation as they are increasingly interdependent in security. World peace and development are facing rare opportunities as factors for maintaining peace and restraining war are increasing. It has become the consensus of the international community to enhance cooperation and jointly meet global challenges.
However, the world is far from tranquil as traditional security issues persist, local wars and violent conflicts crop up time and again and hot-spot issues keep emerging. Non-traditional security threats such as terrorism, proliferation of weapons of mass destruction (WMD), transnational crimes and infectious diseases are on the rise. The intertwined traditional and non-traditional threats pose severe challenges to international security.
International arms control, disarmament and non-proliferation are closely linked with international security. Given more diversified threats to international security and larger numbers of unstable and unpredictable factors, the dimensions of arms control, disarmament and non-proliferation have been constantly expanded with increasing importance. Opportunities and challenges develop side by side while hopes and potential risks coexist.
On the one hand, as an integral part of the global security order, the international arms control, disarmament and non-proliferation regime is still playing an important role in safeguarding world peace and stability. Since the 1990s, fresh achievements have been scored in arms control, disarmament and non-proliferation. A number of important treaties have been concluded in such areas as the prohibition of chemical weapons and nuclear tests. The international consensus has been constantly strengthened on preventing the proliferation of WMD. The UN Security Council has unanimously adopted Resolution 1540 on non-proliferation. Political and diplomatic efforts have been continuously pursued to settle proliferation issues through dialogue and cooperation. Initiatives on strengthening the non-proliferation regime have been introduced. Security dialogues have been intensified among countries and regional security cooperation has been expanded. The aforementioned progress has enhanced mutual trust among countries, boosted the relaxation of the security situation and maintained international strategic stability.
On the other hand, there is still a long way to go in multilateral arms control and disarmament. The process of nuclear disarmament has been long and arduous. The nuclear deterrence strategy based on the first use of nuclear weapons has yet to be abandoned. The trend toward lowering the threshold for the use of nuclear weapons and developing new nuclear weapons is worrisome. There has been greater danger of weaponization of and an arms race in outer space. The universality of international treaties on arms control is still inadequate and negative examples of scrapping important arms control treaties occur from time to time. The multilateral arms control and disarmament regime is faced with difficulty. As the single multilateral disarmament negotiating body, the Conference on Disarmament (CD) in Geneva has for years been unable to carry out substantive work. The international non-proliferation process is facing challenges. The prospect for settling regional nuclear issues is still blurry and the risks of terrorist organizations and other non-state entities acquiring WMD are growing.
Currently, the international process of arms control, disarmament and non-proliferation is at a crucial crossroad. It is an absolute necessity for the maintenance of international peace, security and stability to seize fresh opportunities, meet new challenges and consolidate and constantly strengthen the existing international regime on arms control, disarmament and non-proliferation. This also conforms to the people's will. The international community is in favor of maintaining multilateralism, pushing forward the international process of arms control and disarmament, constantly improving the international non-proliferation regime, stepping up international cooperation and coping with security challenges.
To promote a fair, rational, comprehensive and sound development of the international cause of arms control, disarmament and non-proliferation, the international community should follow the purposes and principles of the UN Charter and other universally recognized norms governing international relations, foster a new security concept featuring mutual trust, mutual benefit, equality and coordination, enhance mutual trust through dialogue and promote common security through cooperation. The right of all countries to equal participation in international arms control, disarmament and non-proliferation affairs should be guaranteed and the international process of arms control, disarmament and non-proliferation promoted on the basis of no derogation of the security of all countries.
The issue of non-proliferation should be dealt with by political and diplomatic means within the framework of international law. The existing international legal system on arms control, disarmament and non-proliferation should be maintained, further strengthened and improved. The legitimate rights and interests of all countries as regards the peaceful use of science and technology should be guaranteed and the role of the UN and other multilateral organizations be brought into full play.