United Nations

A/RES/40/81


General Assembly

Distr. GENERAL  

12 December 1985

ORIGINAL:
ENGLISH


                                                       A/RES/40/81
                                                       12 December 1985
                                                       113th plenary meeting
 
               Urgent need for a comprehensive nuclear-test-ban treaty
 
     The General Assembly,
 
     Convinced of the urgent need for a comprehensive nuclear-test-ban treaty
capable of attracting the widest possible international support and adherence,
 
     Reaffirming its conviction that an end to all nuclear testing by all
States in all environments for all time would be a major step towards ending
the qualitative improvement, development and proliferation of nuclear weapons,
a means of relieving the deep apprehension concerning the harmful consequences
of radioactive contamination for the health of present and future generations
and a measure of the utmost importance in bringing the nuclear-arms race to an
end,
 
     Recalling that the parties to the Treaty Banning Nuclear Weapon Tests in
the Atmosphere, in Outer Space and under Water  undertook not to carry out any
nuclear-weapon-test explosion, or any other nuclear explosion, in the
environments covered by that Treaty, and that in that Treaty the parties
expressed their determination to continue negotiations to achieve the
discontinuance of all test explosions of nuclear weapons for all time,
 
     Recalling also that the parties to the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of
Nuclear Weapons  recalled the determination expressed by the parties to the
Treaty Banning Nuclear Weapon Tests in the Atmosphere, in Outer Space and
under Water in its preamble to seek to achieve the discontinuance of all test
explosions of nuclear weapons for all time and to continue negotiations to
that end, declaring their intention to achieve at the earliest possible date
the cessation of the nuclear-arms race and to undertake effective measures in
the direction of nuclear disarmament,
 
     Noting that in the Final Declaration of the Third Review Conference of
the Parties to the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons,
regret was expressed that a comprehensive multilateral nuclear-test-ban treaty
banning all nuclear tests by all States in all environments for all time had
not been concluded and that all nuclear-weapon States were called on to
participate in the urgent negotiation and conclusion of such a treaty, as a
matter of the highest priority, in the Conference on Disarmament,
 
     Recalling further its previous resolutions on this subject,
 
     Taking into account that part of the report of the Conference on
Disarmament which concerns consideration of the item entitled "Nuclear-test
ban" during its session in 1985,
 
     Also taking into account relevant proposals and initiatives put forward
in the Conference on Disarmament during its session in 1985 and other
proposals and actions advanced in 1985 concerning efforts to promote an end to
nuclear testing,
 
     Expressing its profound regret that, in spite of strenuous efforts, the
Conference on Disarmament was unable to reach agreement on the
re-establishment at its session in 1985 of an ad hoc committee under item 1 of
its agenda, entitled "Nuclear-test ban",
 
     Recognizing the important role of the Conference on Disarmament in the
negotiation of a comprehensive nuclear-test-ban treaty,
 
     Recognizing the importance to such a treaty of the work on a global
seismic detection network, assigned by the Conference on Disarmament to the
Ad Hoc Group of Scientific Experts to Consider International Co-operative
Measures to Detect and Identify Seismic Events,
 
     Recalling paragraph 31 of the Final Document of the Tenth Special Session
of the General Assembly, the first special session devoted to disarmament,
relating to verification of disarmament and arms control agreements, which
stated that the form and modalities of the verification to be provided for in
any specific agreement depend on, and should be determined by, the purposes,
scope and nature of the agreement,
 
     1.   Reiterates its profound concern that, despite the express wishes of
the majority of Member States, nuclear testing continues;
 
     2.   Reaffirms its conviction that a treaty to achieve the prohibition of
all nuclear-test explosions by all States in all environments for all time is
a matter of greatest importance;
 
     3.   Expresses the conviction that such a treaty would constitute a vital
element for the success of efforts to halt and reverse the nuclear-arms race
and the qualitative improvement of nuclear weapons and to prevent the
expansion of existing nuclear arsenals and the spread of nuclear weapons to
additional countries;
 
     4.   Urges the Conference on Disarmament to establish at the beginning of
its session in 1986 an ad hoc committee under item 1 of its agenda, entitled
"Nuclear-test ban", to begin negotiations on a comprehensive nuclear-test-ban
treaty in accordance with the following programme of work:
 
     (a)  Scope
 
          (i)  Comprehensive ban on nuclear explosions in all environments;
 
         (ii)  The question of nuclear explosions for peaceful purposes;
 
     (b)  Verification
 
          (i)  The central importance of verification of a comprehensive test
               ban;
 
         (ii)  Factors affecting verification needs;
 
        (iii)  Means for monitoring compliance:
 
               a.   National technical means;
 
               b.   International seismic monitoring network;
 
                    i.  Determination of capabilities for monitoring
                        compliance;
 
                   ii.  Steps for establishment and improvement;
 
                  iii.  Institutional, administrative and financial
                        arrangements for establishment, testing and operation;
 
                   iv.  Relationship to an effective verification system;
 
               c.   Other means, including an international atmospheric
                    radioactivity monitoring network;
 
               d.   On-site inspection;
 
    (iv)  Specific verification problems and their solutions, including:
 
               a.   Monitoring large land masses;
 
               b.   Methods of possible evasion;
 
               c.   Chemical explosions;
 
     (c)  Compliance
 
          (i)  Procedures and mechanisms for consultation and co-operation;
 
         (ii)  Co-ordinating body, e.g. committee of experts;
 
        (iii)  Consultative committee;
 
         (iv)  Series of actions triggered by suspicion or violation,
               including complaints procedures;
 
     5.   Further urges the Conference on Disarmament:
 
     (a)  To take immediate steps for the establishment, with the widest
possible participation, of an international seismic monitoring network to
determine the capabilities of such a network for monitoring and verifying
compliance with a comprehensive nuclear-test-ban treaty, taking into account
the work performed by the Ad Hoc Group of Scientific Experts to Consider
International Co-operative Measures to Detect and Identify Seismic Events;
 
     (b)  To initiate detailed investigation of other measures to monitor and
verify compliance with such a treaty, including an international network to
monitor atmospheric radioactivity;
 
     6.   Urges all members of the Conference on Disarmament, in particular
the nuclear-weapon States, to co-operate within the Conference in fulfilling
these tasks as called for, inter alia, in the Final Declaration of the Third
Review Conference of the Parties to the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of
Nuclear Weapons;
 
     7.   Calls upon the Conference on Disarmament to report on progress to
the General Assembly at its forty-first session;
 
     8.   Decides to include in the provisional agenda of its forty-first
session the item entitled "Urgent need for a comprehensive nuclear-test-ban
treaty".