STATEMENT BY H.E. MR. AKIO SUDA
AMBASSADOR EXTRAORDINARY AND PLENIPOTENTIARY
HEAD OF THE DELEGATION OF JAPAN
TO THE CONFERENCE ON DISARMAMENT
AT THE FIRST COMMITTEE OF THE 65th SESSION
OF THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY
18 OCTOBER 2010
Today, the growing momentum in nuclear disarmament is capturing the worldfs attention, but the problems surrounding conventional weapons are no less significant. It is these weapons that are being used in actual conflicts and that are injuring and taking the lives of many people in many parts of the world. Japan has been tackling these issues in a comprehensive manner, in which we give due consideration to rule making, mutual relevance of disarmament issues, humanitarian concerns and development inclusively. We are committed to continuing this work, hand-in-hand with the international community, including civil society.
First, Japan welcomes the entry into force of the Convention on Cluster Munitions (CCM) , and congratulates the Government of Lao PDR for hosting the first meeting of states parties next month. We are pleased to contribute to the coming MSP serving as Friend of the Chair on Universalization. It is our strong hope that more and more countries, including the main producers and possessor states, will join the CCM and take concrete action on the humanitarian problems associated with cluster munitions.
Japan attaches importance also to the creation of an effective and meaningful international legal instrument within the framework of the Convention on Certain Conventional Weapons (CCW), in which major producers and possessors of cluster munitions are involved. We believe that it is the duty of responsible members of the CCW to conclude the ongoing negotiations with political will.
On landmines, at the Cartagena Summit on a Mine-Free World in December last year, the States Parties reviewed the status and operation of the Ottawa Convention 10 years after its entry into force and renewed their firm commitments for further cooperation. The adoption of the gCartagena Action Planh and the g2009 Cartagena Declarationh was a remarkable outcome of the Summit. Japan is determined to steadily put into practice the commitments contained in the Action Plan and the Declaration. We call on all other states parties to do the same and also call on all the countries that are not parties to the Ottawa Convention to accede to it forthwith and join in our efforts towards total elimination of anti-personal mines.
The humanitarian problems caused by anti-personnel landmines and cluster munitions continue to be grave. Since 1998 the Government of Japan has extended to 44 countries approximately 390 million U.S. dollars in aid for landmine and cluster munitions clearance activities and victim assistance. Japan will continue this support and contribute to curbing the humanitarian problems caused by these weapons.
Small arms and light weapons take away the lives of hundreds of thousands of people worldwide every year. The UN needs to continue to actively address this issue. Japan welcomes the adoption by consensus of the outcome document at the fourth biennial meeting last July that includes a gfollow-up mechanismh to the Programme of Action (PoA). We believe that the outcome document will serve as an important tool for implementing PoA on the ground. Next year we need to carry out a comprehensive review on the 10 years of UN PoA activities as an input for the 2012 Review Conference. For that, we encourage all member States to submit their regular reports.
This year, Japan, together with Colombia and South Africa, has once again submitted a draft resolution on small arms and light weapons to the General Assembly. In that we renew our determined will concerning the illicit trade of small arms and light weapons and put forward a roadmap for the follow-up of the PoA. We call on each member State to extend its support to this resolution in the fight against the illicit trade in Small Arms and Light Weapons and hope that the resolution will be adopted by consensus.
The process for establishing an Arms Trade Treaty (ATT) is of great importance for the international community, as it could enhance responsible international transfer of conventional weapons and thus preventing their diversion to illicit markets. The Preparatory Committee in July this year produced valuable Chairfs Paper and Facilitatorsf summaries that identify many elements for establishing a clear framework of an ATT. It is vital that productive discussions continue among member States and that at the 2012 United Nations conference we will produce a treaty that sets strong, high-level, common international standards. Japan, as one of the co-authors of the resolutions on an ATT, is ready to actively contribute to the success of this process.
I would like to mention here that Japan has been taking a unique and strict policy of prohibiting the export of any arms in principle. Conventional weapons could exacerbate armed conflicts around the world. Japan has been working in rule making, aid for development, and victim assistance. The international community including civil society needs to continue its utmost efforts in addressing the various challenges. Japan remains committed to do best in such joint efforts.
I thank you.