Procedure : 2016/2936(RSP)
Document stages in plenary
Document selected : B8-1130/2016

Texts tabled :


Debates :

PV 26/10/2016 - 17
CRE 26/10/2016 - 17

Votes :

PV 27/10/2016 - 8.7
Explanations of votes

Texts adopted :

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to wind up the debate on the statement by the Vice-President of the Commission / High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy

pursuant to Rule 123(2) of the Rules of Procedure

on nuclear security and non-proliferation (2016/2936(RSP))

Rolandas Paksas, Fabio Massimo Castaldo, Ignazio Corrao, Isabella Adinolfi on behalf of the EFDD Group

European Parliament resolution on nuclear security and non-proliferation (2016/2936(RSP))  

The European Parliament,

–  having regard to the final communiqué of the Washington Nuclear Security Summit of April 2016,

–  having regard to the Convention on the Physical Protection of Nuclear Material and to its 2005 amendments,

–  having regard to the International Convention for the Suppression of Acts of Nuclear Terrorism,

–  having regard to the Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty,

–  having regard to the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT),

–  having regard to UN Security Council Resolution 2310 (2016),

–  having regard to its resolution of 17 January 2013 on the recommendations of the Non- Proliferation Treaty Review Conference regarding the establishment of a Middle East free of weapons of mass destruction(1),

–  having regard to the European Security Strategy ‘A Secure Europe in a better world’, adopted on 12 December 2003, and to the ‘Strategy against the proliferation of WMD’ of 2003, as well as to the ‘New Lines for Action’ of 2008,

–  having regard to the UN Security Council resolutions following the latest nuclear tests carried out by North Korea/DPRK,

–  having regard to Rule 123(2) of its Rules of Procedure,

A.  whereas more than 25 years after the end of the Cold War, the combined worldwide stockpile of known nuclear weapons still amounts to over 15 000 units; whereas a single nuclear warhead has the capacity, especially if detonated on a large city, to kill millions of people and to create persistent environmental catastrophes;

B.  whereas the threat of nuclear and radiological terrorism remains one of the greatest challenges to international security; whereas according to the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) ‘millions of radioactive sources have been distributed worldwide over the past 50 years’, and those sources are dispersed across more than 100 countries, with many of them being poorly secured and vulnerable to theft; whereas the 2016 edition of the Nuclear Threat Initiative (NTI) Nuclear Security Index found that many developing countries that are considering pursuing nuclear energy programmes do not have the measures in place that are needed to properly protect nuclear facilities from sabotage;

C.  whereas terrorists have long demonstrated an interest in radiological weapons, and security experts do not rule out the possibility that terrorist groups or non-state actors may be able to acquire nuclear weapons;

D.  whereas progress on nuclear disarmament is at a standstill, in a climate of growing tensions between nuclear-armed states, and there are no currently ongoing or planned negotiations to further regulate or reduce the stockpiles of Nuclear Weapon States (NWSs);

E.  whereas the US hosted the fourth Nuclear Security Summit in April 2016; whereas more than 50 countries and international organisations participated in this summit, whose aim is to achieve tangible improvements in nuclear security behaviour and strengthen the global nuclear security architecture; whereas Russia did not participate in this summit;

F.  whereas 20 years after its adoption, the Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty has not yet legally entered into force, pending ratification by the remaining eight so-called Annex 2 countries;

G.  whereas the risk of nuclear proliferation (both vertical and horizontal) is still relevant in many regions of the world, and is liable to trigger a further escalation in the development of nuclear technologies with military purposes;

H.  whereas the DPRK is the only state in the world that has repeatedly tested nuclear weapons in the 21st century, continuing to ignore the UN Security Council resolutions on the matter; whereas on 9 September 2016 an unusual seismic event was detected by the International Monitoring System (IMS), as the DPRK announced that its fifth nuclear test had been a success; whereas the DPRK has been hit by five sets of UN sanctions since its first tests in 2006, but has shown no willingness to shut down its military nuclear programme;

I.  whereas three sessions of the Open-Ended Working Group (OEWG) on nuclear disarmament, as established by a December 2015 resolution of the UN General Assembly, took place in Geneva in 2016; whereas the OEWG reaffirmed its resolve to achieve and maintain a world without nuclear weapons; whereas the final recommendation of the OEWG, adopted with widespread support, calls on the General Assembly to convene a conference in 2017 to negotiate a legally binding instrument to prohibit nuclear weapons, leading towards their total elimination;

J.  whereas many international treaties have successfully established Nuclear Weapons Free Zones (NWFZs), even in areas where there are considerable political tensions; whereas as of today there are seven NWFZs where the states parties have agreed to refrain from the possession, development and deployment of nuclear weapons; whereas efforts to establish a zone free of weapons of mass destruction in the Middle East has proven extremely difficult;

K.  whereas the EU played an important role in the nuclear deal reached with Iran; whereas the EU is party to the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action and keeps working with the E3+3 partners on the full implementation of the plan; whereas the IAEA has confirmed that Iran has taken all the steps it was required to on nuclear-related issues;

L.  whereas at the 2015 NPT review conference the parties could not reach a consensus on a substantive final declaration, offering only minimal advances on the 2010 recommendations; whereas this failure has been attributed to the controversy over the creation of a WMD (Weapons of Mass Destruction)-free zone in the Middle East; whereas substantial gaps remain in different areas of the treaty, including on effective measures for nuclear disarmament, humanitarian aspects of nuclear weapons use and reporting by the recognised nuclear-weapon states; whereas despite this setback the NPT remains the cornerstone of the non-proliferation regime;

M.  whereas the DPRK withdrew from the NPT in 2003 and has never rejoined; whereas the DPRK’s behaviour has created a negative and relevant precedent that represents a serious step back on the road to denuclearisation;

N.  whereas criticism of the lack of progress on the disarmament pillar has led to the launch of the Humanitarian Initiative, culminating in the Humanitarian Pledge, with the aim of identifying and pursuing effective measures to fill the legal gap regarding the prohibition and elimination of nuclear weapons; whereas 127 countries support this initiative;

O.  whereas the European Security Strategy ‘A secure Europe in a better world’ defines the proliferation of WMD as potentially the greatest threat to European security; whereas the EU’s guiding principle and overall aim for disarmament and non-proliferation is to uphold and strengthen all relevant international instruments;

1.  Strongly believes in a world free of nuclear weapons; calls on all EU institutions and the Member States to work together and in international fora to achieve results in this area, with the aim of reducing, and eventually reducing to zero, the number of nuclear weapons both worldwide and on their territory; refuses the notion that nuclear deterrence is necessary and favours multilateral diplomatic efforts and mediation instead;

2.  Welcomes the outcomes of the 2016 Nuclear Security Summit, including the establishment of a nuclear security contact group to help maintain the momentum after the summit; welcomes the agreement reached on an action plan to support five international entities in carrying out their work, as well as the 137 commitments to specific actions taken to advance nuclear security; welcomes the Joint Statement on Promoting Full and Universal Implementation of UN Security Council resolution 1540 (2004); regrets that a key international player like Russia did not participate in the summit;

3.  Welcomes the entry into force of the 2005 Amendment to the Convention on Physical Protection of Nuclear Materials, laying down obligations on states parties to secure their civilian nuclear material in a manner consistent with IAEA guidance and to facilitate the further criminalisation and prosecution of nuclear smuggling; calls for the universal ratification and implementation of this convention, and urges all countries which have not yet ratified the treaty to do so as soon as possible;

4.  Regrets that in the year of its 20th anniversary the Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty (CTBT) has not yet entered into force; believes that the CTBT plays a central role in underpinning the international non-proliferation regime; urges all states that have not signed or ratified this treaty to do so without further delay; reaffirms the EU’s support for the treaty’s early entry into force and universalisation; calls on the VP/HR to keep reaching out to states whose agreement is required to enable the treaty’s entry into force;

5.  Denounces the last nuclear test carried out in the DPRK, as sending out an extremely negative message for world peace, regional stability and the situation of human rights in the DPRK; recalls that the DPRK is banned by the UN from carrying out any tests of nuclear or missile technology; affirms that these breaches by the DPRK represent a grave challenge to the international community, and urges the country to refrain from further nuclear tests and to avoid escalating tensions in an already volatile region; notes the adoption of a new round of robust sanctions against the DPRK, and calls on all parties to thoroughly implement them; underlines, however, that previous sanctions did not achieve the expected results as regards curbing the DPRK’s nuclear programme; reaffirms that sanctions should have as low an impact as possible on the civilian population and should be seen as a means to achieve a political settlement to the nuclear issue in the Korean peninsula, in particular through the resumption of the Six-Party Talks;

6.  Strongly condemns any form of research, development, exploitation or implementation of technologies, research and capacities directly or indirectly related to the DPRK’s nuclear military programme; strongly condemns the development of the DPRK’s ballistic missile technology (both land-based missiles and Submarine Launched Ballistic Missiles), as a threat to world security and especially to security and stability in Asia;

7.  Deplores the continuous provocations of the DPRK and condemns all its missile and nuclear tests, as well as its aggressive rhetoric and hate speech against the US, South Korea and Japan; calls on the EU institutions and Member States to interrupt any form of cooperation with the DPRK in the field of nuclear technologies and nuclear physics until the DPRK gives up its military nuclear programmes;

8.  Calls for further engagement with the governments of the US, Russia, China, South Korea and Japan to ensure better coordination on the issue of nuclear weapons in the DPRK, using both bilateral channels and multilateral fora; underlines the risk of nuclear proliferation arising from the latest developments in the DPRK;

9.  Calls on the European authorities and the Member States to closely monitor any possible transfer of civilian nuclear technology in the DPRK or through DPRK intermediaries;

10.  Welcomes the establishment and the work of the OEWG; welcomes the proposal made to the UN General Assembly to convene an international conference on ways to pursue worldwide nuclear disarmament, including by negotiating a possible binding instrument; calls on the Member States to support such a proposal, and on VP/HR Federica Mogherini and the EEAS to offer a positive contribution for the organisation of such a conference;

11.  Fully supports NWFZs as important contributions to achieving a world without nuclear weapons; believes the institution of such a zone in the Middle East would enhance the prospects for peace in the region;

12.  Salutes the role of the EU in achieving the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, as well as the continuous commitment expressed by the VP/HR on the issue; believes this positive experience should be an example of how the EU could be an important player in finding solutions to major crises worldwide; calls on all sides to foster the still fragile agreement and to uphold all its requirements;

13.  Calls on the Iranian authorities to show transparency, commitment and openness regarding their civilian nuclear programme, including the sharing of data with international organisations such as the IAEA;

14.  Believes, despite the setback of the 2015 NPT review conference, that non-proliferation and nuclear disarmament have to remain at the centre of the international agenda, and reaffirms that the NPT remains the cornerstone of the nuclear non-proliferation regime and the basis for the pursuit of nuclear disarmament; calls on the international community to keep working towards this aim by engaging on realistic and sensible paths in view of the next NPT review cycle; believes that the EU should be an active player in this field, by raising its profile as a significant actor in the global effort to curtail the proliferation of WMD;

15.  Believes that new emerging threats and challenges, as well as changes in the international environment, call for the updating of the 2003 Strategy against the proliferation of WMD and of the 2008 New Lines for Action;

16.  Instructs its President to forward this resolution to the Council, the Commission, the European External Action Service, the Vice-President of the Commission / High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, the parliaments and governments of the Member States, and the Secretary-General of the United Nations.


Texts adopted, P7_TA(2013)0028

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