Statement by H.E. Mr. Mitsuru Kitano, Permanent Representative, Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of Japan to the International Organizations in Vienna at the meeting of the Preparatory Commission for the CTBTO

Mr. Chairman,

I would like to express my sincere gratitude to the Chair of the Preparatory Commission Ambassador, Cristian Istrate, and the Executive Secretary, Dr. Lassina Zerbo, for convening today’s meeting.
Early today, at 2:30 AM Central European Standard Time (around 9:30 AM  Japan Standard Time), the Japan Meteorological Agency detected a seismic wave originating in the vicinity of a nuclear testing site in North Korea, with a wave pattern which differs from those usually seen in natural earthquakes. This was followed by an announcement by North Korea that it had “carried out a nuclear explosion test.” Having considered these circumstances comprehensively, the Government of Japan considers that North Korea has conducted its fifth nuclear test.
North Korea conducted this nuclear test despite repeated calls by the international community, including Japan, to fully comply with the relevant United Nations Security Council resolutions (UNSCRs) and not to conduct any further provocation, including nuclear tests and ballistic missile launches.
This nuclear test by North Korea is totally unacceptable, as it constitutes a grave threat to Japan's security and seriously undermines the peace and security of Northeast Asia as well as the international community when considered together with North Korea’s enhancement of its ballistic missile capability, which could serve as a means to deliver weapons of mass destruction. This nuclear test also represents a grave challenge to international efforts for nuclear non-proliferation.
This nuclear test is a clear violation of the Security Council resolutions 1718 (2006), 1874 (2009), 2087 (2013), 2094 (2013) and 2270 (2016). It also violates the Japan-DPRK Pyongyang Declaration as well as the Joint Statement of the Six-Party Talks of September 2005 and goes against the efforts to resolve various issues through dialogue with North Korea. I also recall that, in the Final Declaration of the Article 14 Conference in NY in September 2015, it was stated that “within the mandate of the CTBT with regard to the prohibition of nuclear tests, we strongly deplore the nuclear tests conducted by the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK) in 2006, 2009 and 2013 and express serious concern over its nuclear programme, which undermines the global non-proliferation regime.” Thus, Japan lodges a serious protest against North Korea and strongly condemns its nuclear test.
The international community should by no means accept North Korea’s act. In this regard, Japan welcomes the fact that many countries in the world have already issued statements condemning North Korea for having conducted this nuclear test.
Mr. Chairman,

20 years after the opening for signature of the CTBT, 183 states have signed and 164 states have ratified the Treaty, and the number of ratifying countries will soon increase to 166 to include Myanmar and Swaziland. The whole international community widely shares the common recognition that nuclear tests should be prohibited. This is well demonstrated by the fact that no nuclear tests have been conducted for almost two decades except for those conducted by North Korea. We believe that the prohibition of nuclear testing has already become a de-facto international norm. North Korea’s announcement that it has conducted another nuclear test following those of 2006, 2009, 2013 and January 2016 goes against such an international common recognition.
We note that the International Monitoring System (IMS) of the CTBTO has detected unusual seismic waveforms immediately after the nuclear test. We appreciate the briefing by the PTS to provide details on its analysis at this meeting. Once again, we have confirmation that the CTBT verification regime is functioning successfully. This case also shows the important role of On-site Inspections, which will only become possible after the CTBT’s entry into force. In this respect, Japan urges all non-ratifying countries especially the Annex II countries, including North Korea, to ratify the CTBT without further delay. We also strongly urge all states possessing nuclear weapons to continue their nuclear test moratoria until the CTBT enters into force.

Mr. Chairman,

In light of the significance of the meeting, I kindly propose that we issue a factual, strong and short report of today’s meeting which carries a significant and clear message of our discussion today.
Thank you, Mr. Chairman.