Statement by NSC Spokesperson Bernadette Meehan Regarding the Treaty on a Nuclear-Weapon-Free Zone in Central Asia
Today, the President submitted the Protocol to the Treaty on a Nuclear-Weapon-Free Zone in Central Asia to the U.S. Senate for its advice and consent to ratification. This is the latest step demonstrating the U.S. commitment to nuclear non-proliferation and to reducing nuclear dangers worldwide. The President looks forward to working closely with the Senate to secure early ratification of this Protocol, as well as the previously submitted Protocols to the African Nuclear Weapon Free Zone Treaty and the South Pacific Nuclear Weapon Free Zone Treaty.
Regional nuclear-weapon-free zone agreements reinforce both the commitment of nations not to pursue nuclear weapons and the nearly 70-year record of their non-use. This protocol, upon entry into force, would obligate the United States not to use or threaten to use nuclear weapons against non-nuclear weapon States within the regional zone who are Party to the Central Asia Nuclear Weapon Free Zone (CANWFZ) Treaty and in compliance with their nuclear nonproliferation obligations.
In order to continue to build upon this commitment to nonproliferation and international peace and security, the United States will also continue to work toward the signing of the Protocol to the Southeast Asian Nuclear Weapon Free Zone Treaty. In the context of this month’s NPT Review Conference and beyond, the United States will continue to aggressively pursue practical measures to advance all of the NPT’s fundamental pillars, disarmament, nonproliferation, and peaceful uses of nuclear technology.