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8 Apr, 2010 14:03

More transparency needed for nuclear-free world – MP

Final de-nuclearization of the world needs better transparency in relation to critical countries like Iran and North Korea, says Konstantin Kosachev, head of the Russian State Duma Foreign Affairs Committee.

“As long as we do not have this transparency we will be limited in our further actions towards becoming a nuclear free world,” he stated.

Independent expert Vladimir Kozin suggests that the next step should be for all nuclear states to sign an agreement on global missile defense.

“We are in favor of creating a multilateral BMD treaty embracing all potential ballistic missile defense countries. I mean the majority of NATO states, Russia and others. So I think it shouldn’t be a bilateral agreement, it should be a multilateral agreement, because if countries possessing missile defense fail to create such a multilateral arrangement there might be a specific BMD race on the parallel with the nuclear arms race,” Vladimir Kozin said.

However, former British Foreign Secretary Lord David Owen thinks a treaty banning nuclear testing should come next.

“Russia signed that, the UK signed that. But neither the United States nor China has had this ratified. Both those countries could move on to that,” Owen stated.

In the meantime, Daryl G. Kimball, executive director of the Arms Control Association, thinks the US and Russia could start work on a joint missile-defense system that would benefit both countries.

“I think the beginning step will be to explore how some of Russia’s sophisticated radars can be integrated into a European missile defense plan and how the US can find ways to show to Russia that, technically, these missile defense deployments they are planning are not going to affect Russia’s strategic offensive arsenal.”

William Perry, former U.S. Secretary of Defense who was involved in the dismantling of old Soviet nuclear weapons during the 90s, suggests that dismantling nuclear weapons is the next step in the process.

I think that future plans will need to focus on not just removing them from deployment, but actually undertaking the dismantlement of the nuclear weapons, as we did during the 90s,” Perry said.