Statement by Ambassador H.E. Tacan İldem, Director-General for International Security Affairs of the Foreign Ministry of Turkey, at the High-Level Meeting on Revitalizing the Work of the Conference on Disarmament and Taking Forward Multileteral Negotiations
Allow me, at the outset, to express our appreciation to H.E. Secretary-General for convening this meeting.
The Conference on Disarmament continues to be the world’s single multilateral disarmament negotiation forum.
It is also worth remembering that the CD is currently the only forum in which all official or self-designated nuclear states take part.
The Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty and the Chemical Weapons Convention which were successfully negotiated in the CD bear testimony to its key role in the sphere of disarmament.
Turkey favours global, overall disarmament and supports all efforts towards sustaining international security through arms control, non-proliferation and disarmament. This is a common challenge which requires cooperation and coordination.
We believe global challenges require global solutions. Needless to say, global problems cannot be solved unilaterally, bilaterally or in small circles of likeminded nations. Effective multilateralism is necessary and achievable.
Equally, second-track initiatives or new formations where the participation of all concerned parties is not granted, will fail to bring about the desired outcomes.
Therefore, the various impediments blocking the path to advancing the work of the CD should be dealt with in a constructive manner and by engaging the parties in order to alleviate legitimate concerns.
There is no question that the parameters for the negotiation of a future Fissile Material Cut-off Treaty (FMCT) are at the core of the current deadlock. As a starting point, we believe that launching negotiations within the framework of the Shannon Mandate, which would not exclude the existing stockpiles, should accommodate the concerns of individual member states.
Despite the bleak atmosphere, we are confident that the CD will continue to play an important role in achieving the goals set at its inception, provided that a spirit of flexibility, compromise and determination is displayed by all concerned.
To this end, our common desire to revitalize the CD should be put to action, so that a Program of Work is agreed upon as soon as possible. It is our conviction that the current international environment and the new tide of multilateralism are conducive for the CD to resume its role as a negotiating forum.
Let me conclude by reiterating that progress in our work here will have wider implications for other multilateral disarmament activities within the UN or elsewhere.