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International Atomic Energy Agency
Information Circular
(Unofficial electronic edition)
INFCIRC/515
19 June 1996

GENERAL Distr.
Original: CHINESE
and ENGLISH


Communication of 9 June, 1996 Received from the Permanent Mission of China to the International Atomic Energy Agency

  1. On 10 June 1996, the Director General received a communication of 9 June 1996 from the Resident Representative of China transmitting the Statement of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the People's Republic of China made on 8 June 1996.

  2. As requested by the Resident Representative of China, the Statement of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs is being circulated for the information of Member States of the Agency.


Statement of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the People's Republic of China

China conducted a nuclear test on 8 June 1996.

China stands for the complete prohibition and thorough destruction of nuclear weapons, and is in favor of reaching a comprehensive nuclear test ban in the process towards this objective. As early as in October 1993, the Chinese Government publicly announced that China stands for the conclusion of the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty no later than 1996. Since then, the Chinese delegation has taken an active part in the CTBT negotiations in Geneva. China will continue to work with other countries for the conclusion, within this year, of a fair, reasonable and verifiable treaty with universal adherence and unlimited duration.

The limited amount of nuclear weapons China possesses is solely for the purpose of self-defence and does not constitute a threat to any country. China has unilaterally and solemnly undertaken not to be the first to use nuclear weapons at any time and under any circumstances. It has also committed itself not to use or threaten to use nuclear weapons against non-nuclear weapon states or nuclear weapon free zones. At the same time, China strongly calls on other nuclear weapon states for a positive response to China's initiative by immediately concluding, through negotiations, a treaty on mutual non-first use of nuclear weapons, and reaching an agreement on the unconditional non-use or non-threat of use of nuclear weapons against non-nuclear weapon states or nuclear weapon-free zones.

In the world today, there still exist huge nuclear arsenals and the threat of a nuclear war caused by the first use of nuclear weapons. Against such a background, for the purpose of safeguarding the supreme interests of the state and nation, China cannot but conduct the necessary and the minimum number of nuclear tests. We have all along exercised utmost restraint in conducting nuclear tests, and the number of tests we have conducted is extremely limited.

Together with the governments and peoples of other countries in the world, the Chinese Government and people will work unremittingly and do their utmost for the realization of the lofty goal of a nuclear weapon-free world at an early date and for the maintenance of lasting peace and universal security.

Based on the afore-mentioned position, the Chinese Government hereby announces that before September this year, China will conduct another nuclear test to ensure the safety of its nuclear weapons. After that, China will exercise a moratorium on nuclear testing.