Posted by: ctbtonewsroom | June 27, 2018

Beyond Trump’s Korea Fantasies

The New York Times Editorial Board highlights the themes that should shape an agreement between the United States and North Korea, arguing that the DPRK could make CTBT ratification one of its short-term goals.

“The broad outlines of an agreement would be similar to proposals and pacts the United States has developed over the decades to restrain countries with nuclear ambitions: In return for curbing their nuclear programs and allowing international verification, such countries are offered economic, political and security benefits.”

“Negotiating an end to North Korea’s nuclear threat will take deliberation, political courage — and time… North Korea should make its temporary freeze on nuclear and missile testing permanent and allow international inspectors to verify the destruction of the test sites the government claims to have blown up. It could even sign the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty.”

Read the whole article here.

In an interview with VOA Korea, CTBTO Executive Secretary Lassina Zerbo explains that a verbal promise from North Korea not to continue nuclear testing does not suffice, and that North Korea should instead join the CTBT. Asked how long it would take to attain significant nuclear disarmament achievements, Zerbo replies that it would take longer than people suspect, as there are various elements to be considered such as nuclear and missile test sites, as well as nuclear materials. He points out that this process requires “a lot of expertise and knowledge, not only from international organisations, but also from nuclear weapons states like the US.” With regards to CTBTO’s role, Zerbo notes that the CTBTO has the expertise in comparing and analysing data before and after a test. The Organization could verify the permanent and irreversible closure of the North Korean test sites. Blowing up a tunnel is not enough.

Read more from the interview here.

Original article in Korean.

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Posted by: ctbtonewsroom | June 21, 2018

OPINION: So much left to be done

“The ultimate goal is to halt, and then reverse, and ultimately eliminate North Korea’s nuclear weapons capability,” says Thomas Countryman in an op-ed for Kyodo News. Stating that the Trump – Kim summit is “a positive step forward, but a small one,” Countryman outlines what future negotiations should look like in order to achieve the desired denuclearisation of North Korea.

To begin with, North Korea and the United States should seek to arrive at a common definition of denuclearisation, because as it stands now, it is still a blurred line. Following that, the US “should press Pyongyang for a complete inventory of its nuclear weapons, facilities and materials.” To compliment these steps, “The United States must also lay the groundwork for the involvement of the wider international community and of the two organizations which are key to verification: the [IAEA] and the [CTBTO].”

Read the full article here.

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