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Procedure : 2008/2324(INI)
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Document selected : A6-0234/2009

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PV 23/04/2009 - 17
CRE 23/04/2009 - 17

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PV 24/04/2009 - 7.25
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Friday, 24 April 2009 - Strasbourg
Non-proliferation and the future of the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT)

European Parliament recommendation to the Council of 24 April 2009 on non-proliferation and the future of the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT) (2008/2324(INI))

The European Parliament,

–   having regard to the proposal for a recommendation to the Council by Annemie Neyts-Uyttebroeck, on behalf of the ALDE Group, and Angelika Beer, on behalf on the Verts/ALE Group, on non-proliferation and the future of the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT) (B6-0421/2008),

–   having regard to the forthcoming 2010 Review Conference of the Parties to the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons,

–   having regard to its previous resolutions of 26 February 2004(1), 10 March 2005(2), 17 November 2005(3) and 14 March 2007(4) on nuclear non-proliferation and nuclear disarmament,

–   having regard to its resolution of 5 June 2008 on implementation of the European Security Strategy and ESDP(5),

–   having regard to the European Union Strategy against the proliferation of Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD), adopted by the European Council on 12 December 2003,

–   having regard to the Council statement of 8 December 2008 on tighter international security, in particular points 6, 8 and 9 thereof, which expresses the EU's determination to combat the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction and their means of delivery,

–   having regard to the pivotal role of the Nuclear Suppliers Group in the context of non-proliferation,

–   having regard to the UN Security Council resolutions relating to issues of non-proliferation and nuclear disarmament, especially Resolution 1540 (2004),

–   having regard to the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty, the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) Comprehensive Safeguards Agreements and Additional Protocols, the Convention on the Physical Protection of Nuclear Material, the International Convention for the Suppression of Acts of Nuclear Terrorism, the Hague Code of Conduct against Ballistic Missile Proliferation, the Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (START I), which will expire in 2009, and the Strategic Offensive Reductions Treaty (SORT),

–   having regard to the report on the implementation of the European Security Strategy agreed by the European Council on 11 December 2008,

–   having regard to Rule 114(3) and Rule 90 of its Rules of Procedure,

–   having regard to the report of the Committee on Foreign Affairs (A6-0234/2009),

A.   stressing the need to further reinforce all three pillars of the NPT, namely non-proliferation, disarmament and cooperation on the civilian use of nuclear energy,

B.   strongly concerned about the lack of progress in achieving concrete objectives (such as the so-called "13 steps"(6)) in pursuit of the goals of the NPT, as agreed at the previous Review Conferences, especially now that threats are arising from a variety of sources, including increasing proliferation, the potential for nuclear technology and radioactive material to fall into the hands of criminal organisations and terrorists, and the reluctance of nuclear weapons States that are signatories to the NPT to reduce or eliminate their nuclear arsenals and decrease their adherence to a military doctrine of nuclear deterrence,

C.   whereas the proliferation of WMD and their means of delivery, both to state and non-state actors, represents one of the most serious threats to international stability and security,

D.   recalling the commitment of the EU to make use of all instruments at its disposal to prevent, deter, halt and if possible eliminate proliferation programmes causing concern at global level, as clearly expressed by the EU Strategy against Proliferation of WMD adopted by the European Council on 12 December 2003,

E.   stressing the need for the EU to intensify efforts to counter proliferation flows and proliferation financing, to impose sanctions on acts of proliferation and to develop measures to prevent intangible transfers of knowledge and know-how via all instruments available including multilateral treaties and verification mechanisms, national and internationally coordinated export controls, cooperative threat reduction programmes and political and economic levers,

F.   encouraged by new disarmament proposals such as those called for by Henry Kissinger, George P. Shultz, William J. Perry and Sam Nunn in January 2007 and January 2008, the Model Nuclear Weapons Convention and the Hiroshima-Nagasaki protocol, promoted globally by civic organisations and political leaders, and campaigns such as "Global Zero", which argue that one crucial way of ensuring the prevention of nuclear proliferation and the achievement of global security is to move towards the elimination of nuclear weapons,

G.   welcoming, in this respect, the initiatives of the French and British governments to reduce their nuclear arsenals,

H.   in particular, strongly encouraged by US President Barack Obama's clear outline of his approach to nuclear issues in Prague on 5 April 2009, his commitment to take nuclear disarmament forward and his vision of a world without nuclear weapons; welcoming the constructive cooperation between the USA and Russia to renew the START agreement, take ballistic missiles off hair-trigger alert, and dramatically reduce the stockpiles of US nuclear weapons and material; welcoming the US decision to fully participate in the E3 + 3 process with Iran; welcoming the ratification by the USA of the Additional Protocol to the IAEA Safeguards Agreements as a positive, confidence-building step; warmly welcoming also the intention of President Obama to finalise the ratification by the United States of the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty (CTBT) and to initiate negotiations on a fissile material cut-off treaty,

I.   underscoring the need for close coordination and cooperation between the European Union and its partners, including in particular the United States and Russia, with a view to reviving and strengthening the non-proliferation regime,

J.   emphasising that strengthening the NPT as the cornerstone of the global non-proliferation regime is of vital importance, and recognising that bold political leadership and a number of progressive, consecutive steps are urgently needed in order to reaffirm the validity of the NPT and to reinforce the agreements, treaties and agencies that make up the existing proliferation and disarmament regime, including in particular the CTBT and the IAEA,

K.   welcoming, in this respect, the joint British-Norwegian initiative aimed at assessing the feasibility of, and establishing clear procedural steps for, the eventual dismantling of nuclear weapons and the verification procedures relating thereto; regarding this initiative as very positive for the EU, for NATO and for other relevant players,

L.   welcoming the letter dated 5 December 2008 from the French EU Presidency to UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon setting out the EU's disarmament proposals which were adopted by the European Council in December 2008,

M.   welcoming the speech made on 9 December 2008 by Javier Solana, EU High Representative for the CFSP, at a conference on "Peace and Disarmament: A World without Nuclear Weapons", in which he welcomed the fact that the question of nuclear disarmament has again moved to the top of the international agenda and underlined the need for the EU to mainstream non-proliferation in its overall policies,

N.   welcoming the speech made in Prague on 5 April 2009 by US President Obama, in which he stated that the USA has a moral responsibility to lead a campaign to rid the world of all nuclear weapons, although he admitted that this goal might not be achieved in his lifetime, and stressed the need to strengthen the NPT as a basis for cooperation and a step-by-step solution; whereas the new US administration should include the European Union fully in this campaign, and especially in the global meeting planned for 2009 to address the threat of nuclear weapons,

O.   pointing to the generalisation of the introduction of "non-proliferation clauses" into the agreements concluded between the EU and third States since 2003,

P.   having regard to non-proliferation and disarmament initiatives outside the framework of the UN which the EU has endorsed, such as the Proliferation Security Initiative and the G8 World Partnership,

Q.   welcoming the fact that the Commission has observer status in the Nuclear Suppliers Group and in the NPT Review Conference, and that the Council Secretariat is also participating in the NPT Conference, either within the EC delegation or with the EU Presidency,

1.  Addresses the following recommendations to the Council:

   (a) review and update Council Common Position 2005/329/PESC of 25 April 2005 relating to the 2005 Review Conference of the Parties to the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons(7), to be endorsed at the December 2009 European Council meeting, in preparation for a successful outcome at the 2010 NPT Review Conference which will further strengthen all three existing pillars of the NPT; commit to the aim of eventual total nuclear disarmament, as contained in the proposal for a Nuclear Weapons Convention;
   (b) intensify efforts to secure the universalisation and effective implementation of non-proliferation rules and instruments, in particular by improving means of verification;
   (c) actively support, in cooperation with its partners, concrete proposals to bring the production, use and reprocessing of all nuclear fuel under the control of the IAEA, including the creation of an international fuel bank; support in addition other initiatives for the multilateralisation of the nuclear fuel cycle aimed at the peaceful use of nuclear energy, bearing in mind in that regard that Parliament welcomes the readiness of the Council and the Commission to contribute up to EUR 25 million to the creation of a nuclear fuel bank under the control of the IAEA and wishes to see a speedy approval of the Joint Action on this subject;
   (d) support further efforts to strengthen the mandate of the IAEA, including the generalisation of the Additional Protocols to the IAEA Safeguard Agreements, and other steps designed to develop confidence-building measures; ensure that sufficient resources are made available to that organisation so as to fulfil its vital mandate in making nuclear activities secure;
   (e) make substantial progress on the G8 Partnership initiative, the Proliferation Security Initiative and the Global Threat Reduction Initiative, and push for the early entry into force of the CTBT;
   (f) deepen its dialogue with the new US administration and all nuclear-weapons powers, with a view to pursuing a common agenda aimed at progressive reduction of the nuclear warheads stockpile; in particular, support those steps being taken by the USA and Russia to substantially reduce their nuclear weapons as agreed in START I and in SORT; press for ratification of the CTBT and renewal of the START agreement;
   (g) develop strategies at the 2010 NPT Review Conference aimed at achieving agreement on a treaty to halt the production of fissile material for weapons purposes in a way that is not discriminatory, which means that the treaty thus negotiated should require not only non-nuclear-weapons States or States currently outside the NPT but also the five UN Security Council members, all of which possess nuclear weapons, to forswear the production of fissile material for weapons and to dismantle all their established fissile material production facilities for such weapons;
   (h) fully support the reinforcement and improvement of means of verification of compliance with all available non-proliferation instruments;
   (i) request an evaluation of the effectiveness of the use of clauses on non-proliferation of WMD in the agreements concluded between the EU and third States;
   (j) keep Parliament regularly informed about all preparatory meetings in the run-up to the 2010 NPT Review Conference and duly take into account its views on non-proliferation and disarmament matters with regard to that Conference;

2.  Instructs its President to forward this recommendation to the Council and, for information, to the Commission, the UN Secretary-General, the President of the 2010 NPT Review Conference, the parliaments of the Member States, Parliamentarians for Nuclear Non-Proliferation and Disarmament and Mayors for Peace.

(1) OJ C 98 E, 23.4.2004, p. 152.
(2) OJ C 320 E, 15.12.2005, p. 253.
(3) OJ C 280 E, 18.11.2006, p. 453.
(4) OJ C 301 E, 13.12.2007, p. 146.
(5) Texts adopted, P6_TA(2008)0255.
(6) United Nations: 2000 Review Conference of the Parties to the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons, NPT/CONF.2000/28 (Parts I and II).
(7) OJ L 106, 27.4.2005, p. 32.

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