New START treaty
France welcomes the American Congress’s ratification of the New START treaty, signed with Russia on 8 April, which envisages new bilateral reductions in the two countries’ strategic offensive weapons.
It is an essential step towards the treaty’s coming into force, which France hopes will take place soon.
France, with her European partners, supports the continuation of the American-Russian bilateral process of reducing nuclear arsenals. It is an important element in the European action plan on disarmament adopted by the 27 European Union heads of State and government under the French Presidency. It is also a major recommendation of the action plan adopted by the Review Conference of the Parties to the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT) in May. The reduction of Russian and American nuclear arsenals is in fact a priority in the disarmament field, because those two countries still hold nearly 95% of the world’s stock of nuclear weapons.
This new nuclear disarmament treaty shows the desire of the United States and Russia to work with determination towards a safer world. France, who has for many years been taking concrete and irreversible measures on disarmament, fully supports those two countries in that effort. She welcomes the fact that other nuclear powers are committing themselves to the path which she, along with the United Kingdom, has been following for more than a decade now, based on a stance of strict sufficiency of nuclear arsenals.
France also calls for the ratification of the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty (CTBT), so that this essential treaty in the disarmament field may come into force./.