Request to the 8th NPT Review Conference

We Call for Consensus to Be Reached to Start International Negotiations for the Elimination of Nuclear Weapons

May 2, 2010

Kazuo Shii

Executive Committee Chair, Japanese Communist Party

Member of the House of Representatives, National Diet

The 8th NPT Review Conference is being held at a time when major changes are taking place in international politics calling for a “world without nuclear weapons.”

On behalf of a political party in Japan that has resolutely worked for the elimination of nuclear weapons, hand in hand with the people of Japan, the only A-bombed country in the world that experienced first hand the horrors associated with the use of nuclear weapons, I would like to make the following requests, in the sincere hope that the NPT Review Conference will give life to the historic chance for humanity to achieve a significant success:

(1) To reaffirm the requirement for “An unequivocal undertaking by the nuclear-weapon States to accomplish the total elimination of their nuclear arsenals.”

The NPT regime is discriminatory in that it allows the five powers to possess nuclear weapons while imposing on other states the obligation of non-possession. Nevertheless, the international community accepted the regime only because the nuclear-weapon states made the pledge that they would make sincere efforts to work for the elimination of nuclear weapons. A reconfirmation of the “unequivocal undertaking” made in 2000 can be used as a basis to make this year’s Review Conference a success.

(2) To create a consensus for commencement of international negotiations for the abolition of nuclear weapons

It is significant to advance partial measures for nuclear disarmament such as concluding the new Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (New START), ratifying and enforcing the Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty (CTBT), pursuing a Fissile Material Cut-off Treaty (FMCT), agreeing on a no-first-use policy of nuclear weapons, banning the use or threat of use of nuclear weapons against non-nuclear weapon states, and spreading nuclear weapon-free zones in different parts of the world.

At the same time, the diplomatic process in the past in regard to the nuclear weapons issue has proved that only the implementation of these partial measures cannot bring about a “world without nuclear weapons.” A path toward such a world will open up only by starting international negotiations combined with and in parallel with these partial measures. In other words, it is essential to commence international negotiations with the elimination of nuclear weapons as the goal and to agree on the process needed to achieve this goal. That the world decides to take this important step toward international negotiations for the abolition of nuclear weapons will also act as the needed catalyst to advance the partial measures.

The 2000 NPT Review Conference agreed on “The engagement as soon as appropriate of all the nuclear-weapon States in the process leading to the total elimination of their nuclear weapons.”

Resolution 1887 adopted by the UN Security Council meeting at the level of heads of government in September 2009 resolved “to create the conditions for a world without nuclear weapons.” At the same time, it called on the parties to the NPT, pursuant to Article VI of the Treaty, to undertake to pursue negotiations in good faith toward nuclear arms reduction and disarmament.

Based on these past achievements by the international community, I strongly request that all the countries, including the nuclear-weapon states, endeavor to reach agreement in the 8th NPT Review Conference to start international negotiations for the total elimination of nuclear weapons.

The Central Committee of the Japanese Communist Party
4-26-7 Sendagaya,Shibuya-ku,Tokyo 151-8586