Select Committee on European Union Fortieth Report


Letter from the Chairman to Rt Hon Douglas Alexander MP, Minister for Europe, Foreign and Commonwealth Office

  Thank you for your Explanatory Memorandum dated 9 March which Sub-Committee C considered at its meeting on 16 March. The Sub-Committee agreed to clear the document from scrutiny.

  We fully support the measures being proposed in support of the CTBTO. In addition, however, we urge you to consider pressing Member States to agree a common position in support of encouraging the entry into force of the CTBT at the earliest opportunity. We believe that such a common position would be in accordance with the overall position adopted by the EU in its Strategy against the Proliferation of Weapons of Mass Destruction in December 2003.

20 March 2006

Letter from Rt Hon Douglas Alexander MP to the Chairman

  Thank you for your letter of 20 March about the Explanatory Memorandum dated 9 March on the Council Joint Action in support of the Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty Organisation (CTBTO). I am pleased that Sub-Committee C cleared the Joint Action on 16 March 2006.

  We agree that the early entry into force of the Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty (CTBT) is very important and will continue to take every suitable opportunity to encourage States to sign and ratify the treaty. With this in mind, the EU's contribution to the promotion of early entry into force of the CTBT already forms part of Common Position 1999/533/CFSP, as implemented by Council Decision 2003/567/CFSP of 21 July 2003. The Common Position adopted by partners in regards to the Nuclear Non Proliferation Treaty (NPT) Review Conference, agreed in 2005, called upon States to sign and ratify the Treaty without delay and without condition, and pending the entry into force called upon all States to abide to a moratorium. The recently adopted Joint Action builds upon this Common Position and reaffirms our strong commitment to the CTBT.

6 April 2006

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