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June 4, 2015

US expresses confidence in Pakistan nuke security

National

June 4, 2015

WASHINGTON: The United States expressed full confidence in Pakistan’s indigenous efforts to strengthen nuclear security, and welcomed Pakistan’s efforts to strengthen export controls and border security including through ongoing efforts for installation of radiation portal monitors at border crossings, as well as Pakistan’s hosting of IAEA training activities at its Nuclear Security Center.
The Foreign Secretary-led delegation had daylong talks with the US officials on Tuesday. Under Secretary of State for Arms Control and International Security Rose Gottemoeller co-chaired the seventh round of the ‘Security, Strategic Stability, and Nonproliferation’ working group.
Pakistan reiterated its commitment to Credible Minimum Deterrence and to pursue measures in the region aimed at building confidence and lessening the risk of armed conflict.
A joint statement issued after the meeting said that the United States underscored its continued efforts to realise the agenda set forth in President Obama’s 2009 Prague speech, including the importance of commencing negotiation of a Fissile Material Cutoff Treaty (FMCT) in the Conference on Disarmament (CD). Whereas, Pakistan also underlined its preference for a broader Fissile Material Treaty (FMT) that addresses the asymmetries in existing stocks and highlighted that Pakistan’s position on FMT will be determined by its national security interests and the objectives of strategic stability in South Asia.
Both sides noted the high priority that arms control has for the international community. The United States outlined its nuclear stockpile reductions, explained its efforts to seek congressional approval to ratify the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty (CTBT), and reaffirmed its commitment not to conduct further nuclear test explosions.
According to the statement, Pakistan noted its continued support for CTBT-related resolutions in the United Nations General Assembly, and its consistent stance that

it will not be the first in its region to resume nuclear testing.
The delegations also discussed international efforts aimed at improving nuclear security with a central role of IAEA including through the high level focus by the Nuclear Security Summit process and the Global Initiative to Combat Nuclear Terrorism. In this context, both countries expressed their desire to see the 2016 Nuclear Security Summit result in a strengthened nuclear security architecture.
Accordingly, both countries aspired to ratify the Amendment to the Convention on the Physical Protection of Nuclear Material in accordance with national laws and procedures.The delegations discussed issues related to the Chemical Weapons Convention (CWC) and the Biological Weapons Convention (BWC) and would continue such consultations. It also reaffirmed that the Working Group remains an invaluable forum for discussing issues of critical mutual importance and stated that they looked forward to future sessions.

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