Statement on behalf of the European Union by Ambassador Bernhard BrasackEU Statement – on regional Issues, including with respect to the Middle East and implementation of the 1995 Middle East Resolution
1. The EU is determined to play a part in addressing the problems of regional instability and insecurity and the situations of conflict which lie behind many weapons programmes. Instability does not occur in a vacuum. The best solution to the problem of WMD proliferation is that countries should no longer feel they need them. If possible, political solutions should be found to the problem which lead them to seek WMD. The more secure countries feel, the more likely they are to abandon programmes: disarmament measures can lead to a virtuous circle just as weapons programmes can lead to an arms race. To this end, the EU will foster regional security arrangements and regional arms control and disarmament processes.
2. The EU believes that political solutions to all different problems, fears and ambitions of countries in the most dangerous regions for proliferation will not be easy to achieve in the short run. Our policy is therefore to prevent, deter, halt and where possible eliminate proliferation programmes of concern, while dealing with their underlying causes.
3. The EU Member States continue to attach great importance to achieving the universality of and universal compliance with the NPT. The possession of nuclear weapons by states outside the NPT and non-compliance with the Treaty's provisions by states party to the Treaty undermine non-proliferation and disarmament efforts.
4. The EU continues to be actively engaged with Mediterranean partners in the framework of the Barcelona Process.
5. In the context of the implementation of the chapter on political and security partnership of the 1995 Barcelona declaration, the EU with its Mediterranean Partners agreed to pursue a mutually and effectively verifiable Middle East Zone free of WMD and their delivery systems. Furthermore, they agreed to consider practical steps to prevent the proliferation of WMD. These commitments were again underlined on the occasion of the 10th Anniversary Euro-Mediterranean Summit in Barcelona in November 2005.
6. The EU has consistently advocated the implementation of the Resolutions on the Middle East adopted by the UN General Assembly and the 1995 NPT Review and Extension Conference.
7. The EU calls upon the States of the region to establish an effectively verifiable zone free of nuclear weapons as well as of other weapons of mass destruction and their means of delivery. We call upon all States in the region that have not yet done so to accede to the NPT, the Biological and Chemical Weapons Conventions and to conclude with the IAEA a Comprehensive Safeguards Agreement and an Additional Protocol. We believe that the accession of all States in the area to the IAEA’s Comprehensive Safeguards Agreements and the Additional Protocol should be a priority for the international community as a whole and would represent a crucial contribution to an overall improvement for the security and confidence in the Middle East.
8. The EU recalls that recent events in the region have led to the unanimous adoption of UNSCR 1737 and 1747. Full compliance by all States Parties to the NPT in the region with the non-proliferation and all other obligations of the Treaty is of key importance to realizing the objective of a Middle East free of nuclear weapons as well as of other weapons of mass destruction including their means of delivery. In addition full compliance with IAEA safeguards agreements and pertinent UN Security Council Resolutions is crucial. The EU also underlines that the accession of all States of the region to the NPT as non-nuclear weapon States is of critical importance to realizing this objective.