China test ban treaty

Chinese negotiator: China will stick to ban on nuclear tests
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The Independent Online

Beijing; Despite the U.S. Senate's rejection of an international treaty banning nuclear testing, China will stick to the ban and ratify the pact, a senior Chinese arms control negotiator was quoted as saying Monday.

Beijing; Despite the U.S. Senate's rejection of an international treaty banning nuclear testing, China will stick to the ban and ratify the pact, a senior Chinese arms control negotiator was quoted as saying Monday.

"I believe that there is no question that we will ratify the treaty. It is only a matter of time," Sha Zukang, director of the Arms Control and Disarmament Department of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, said in an interview with the official China Daily.

Sha did not give any indication of when the National People's Congress would ratify the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty, or CTBT. But he noted that U.S. approval would "facilitate" ratification in China, the newspaper reported.

Beijing has expressed regret at the U.S. Senate's rejection of the treaty two weeks ago.

Sha accused the United States of sending dangerous signals that it will sign treaties but not ratify them or adopt domestic laws to circumvent international agreements.

"These two messages will have serious and negative influence on the future multinational disarmament negotiations," Sha was quoted as saying.

Sha said that China would neither conduct tests nor carry out any other activities in violation of the treaty before its legislature ratifies it.

"We will never adopt double standards," he said. "The Chinese government will firmly honor its political commitment to the CTBT."

China and the United States are two of the 44 nuclear powers who must ratify the treaty before it goes into force. So far only 26 have ratified it.

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