France’s Objectives for the 2015 NPT RevCon

France views the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT) as the cornerstone of the international non-proliferation regime. It is in the interest of all that the next Review Conference should reaffirm this principle, preserve the integrity of the Treaty, and strengthen it by progressing in the implementation of the three mutually reinforcing pillars of the Treaty : non-proliferation, disarmament, and peaceful uses of nuclear energy.

France is fully committed to the success of the 2015 Review Conference. France is aware of the shared responsibilities of States Parties and will focus its efforts on the issues of common interest where consensus is attainable. It encourages all delegations to work on this basis.

France remains committed to full implementation of the ambitious long-term action plan adopted by consensus in 2010, which is based on a progressive approach that balances the three pillars.

1/ Nuclear disarmament
France’s continuing objective is to focus on concrete and realistic actions that enable progress towards the conditions needed to build a world without nuclear weapons in accordance with article 6 of the NPT. To this end, France would like RevCon to reaffirm the need to progress via a step-by-step approach, including the following steps in particular :

-  entry into force of the CTBT and moratorium on tests for nuclear-weapon States that have not ratified it ;
-  launch of negotiations on a treaty banning the production of fissile material for nuclear weapons as soon as possible and in the meantime, affirmation or reaffirmation of moratoriums. The useful and concrete discussions held by the Group of Governmental Experts created by resolution 67/53 of the General Assembly of the United Nations have shown that the time is ripe for negotiating a treaty ;
-  continue to encourage the dialogue amongst nuclear weapon States on disarmament, with a view to encouraging further reductions in the largest arsenals ;
-  role of nuclear weapons in defence policies, encouraging the limitation of arsenals to the strict minimum and promoting doctrines restricting deterrence to defence of vital interests in extreme circumstances of self-defence ;
-  continuation of the P5 process, in particular on the monitoring of the implementation of the NPT ;
-  continued progress on the regional approach to disarmament, especially regarding the nuclear-weapon-free zone in Southeast Asia, building upon the progress made on establishment of a nuclear-weapon-free zone in Central Asia.

2/ Non-proliferation
France, which is a resolute participant in the fight against proliferation, would like the Review Conference to reaffirm that respecting non-proliferation obligations benefits all by strengthening international security and enables us to :

-  respond firmly to proliferation crises
-  make progress regarding how the community of States Parties should respond in the event of abuse of the withdrawal provision of the Treaty ;
-  strengthen the IAEA’s verification capacities, especially in non-nuclear-weapon States that have not yet accepted the universalization of the Comprehensive Safeguards Agreements and the Additional Protocol, which should become the standard for verification ;
-  deter violations of IAEA guarantees more effectively ;
-  encourage and support the development of national competences in the field of export controls, which help combat proliferation, build confidence and guarantee an environment that fosters the development of peaceful uses of nuclear energy ;
-  make progress in jointly identifying new challenges relating to proliferation.

3/ Peaceful uses of nuclear energy
France is deeply committed to the responsible development of peaceful uses of nuclear energy, which can make a major global contribution to meeting basic human needs and sustainable development.

The Conference should reiterate the right of all States that meet their international obligations and pursue civil nuclear activities in good faith to benefit from peaceful applications of atomic energy in optimal safety, security and non-proliferation conditions.

With a view to strengthening implementation of the third pillar of the Treaty, it would also be useful if the Conference were to :

-  call for continued efforts to promote nuclear safety worldwide and encourage the States Parties to implement the most pressing measures ;
-  encourage development and international cooperation on training by mobilizing all states with experience in the field of civil nuclear energy. Training needs are increasing rapidly and this represents a challenge to be tackled by the community of States Parties ;
-  urge the States Parties to increase security of radioactive sources to ensure that the fulfilment of needs in many fields (industry, health, etc.) does not jeopardize the security of States Parties.

4/ Middle East
As regards the Middle East, France shares the objective of holding the conference decided upon in 2010 to establish a zone free of nuclear weapons and other weapons of mass destruction and their delivery systems as soon as possible. It expects the Review Conference to :

-  reaffirm strong support in principle for implementing the 1995 resolution which provides for the creation of such a zone ;
-  call on all states in the region to engage in more extensive dialogue and cooperate with the Facilitator and the co-conveners, in order to reach a mutual agreement on arrangements for the conference.