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People's Daily Online

China calls for treaty on space weapons

People's Daily Online

(Xinhua) 19:10, June 11, 2014

Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying on Wednesday called on the international community to start negotiation on a legally binding treaty that would prevent an arms race in outer space.

Hua made the remarks at a routine press briefing when asked to brief on an updated draft international treaty on banning the deployment of weapons in outer space, which was jointly submitted by China and Russia to a UN-sponsored disarmament conference on Tuesday.

The Treaty on the Prevention of the Placement of Weapons in Outer Space, the Threat or Use of Force Against Outer Space Objects, was presented at a plenary session of the Conference on Disarmament, the world's sole multilateral forum for disarmament negotiations.

The new draft treaty has supplemented, revised and refined some clauses of the one that China and Russia presented in 2008. Its refinements include the definition and scope of the treaty, and the organizations and mechanisms it charges with solving disputes.

'This is a positive effort made by China and Russia to promote negotiation on producing an arms control treaty in outer space and preventing an arms race there,' said Hua.

It is the common obligation of the international community to safeguard peace and tranquility in space, she said, reiterating that China has always advocated peaceful use of outer space and opposed its weaponization.

The spokeswoman called on countries around the world to start negotiation on a legally binding agreement as soon as possible on the basis of the China-Russia draft treaty, in order to safeguard peace and security in outer space.

'We hope that individual countries will seriously listen to calls from the international community and treat the negotiation initiative with a constructive attitude,' she added.

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