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France must commit to a world without nuclear weapons

On 27 March 2017, negotiations for the prohibition of nuclear weapons will open in New York; these follow the adoption of Resolution L41 by the United Nations on 23 December, seeking to establish a new treaty on a nuclear arms ban.
 
Although France has signed the Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT), Article 6 of which states that each party “shall pursue negotiations in good faith on effective measures relating to cessation of the nuclear arms race and to nuclear disarmament, and on a Treaty on general and complete disarmament under strict and effective international control”, it voted against Resolution L41 and will not be a present for the discussions beginning in New York.
 
France, like the United States, Russia and the U.K., sought to prevent these negotiations initiated by countries that are engaged in a humanitarian approach, countries that wish to consider not only the security of nuclear-armed nations, but of all nations that could potentially be victims of nuclear conflict.
 
The negotiations have a good chance of leading to a draft treaty on banning nuclear weapons and implementing nuclear disarmament. Two nuclear powers, China (which signed the NPT), and India (which did not sign), have expressed their intent to participate in the discussions. It is time for France to assess these global changes and play an active role in the process underway.
 
The French Communist Party calls on France to abandon its empty-chair policy and join in the negotiations that are beginning, proposing concrete measures for moving towards a world free of nuclear weapons, such as a freeze on all programmes for upgrading weapons systems, which are contrary to the spirit and the letter of the NPT Treaty.
 
Paris 27 March 2017, the French Communist Party
 

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