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                     Office of the Press Secretary
                          (New York, New York)

For Immediate Release September 22, 1997


Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty
Chronology During Clinton Administration

March 3, 1993: Assistant to the President for National Security Affairs (APNSA) Lake orders completion of an interagency Presidential Review of U.S. Policy on Nuclear Testing and a Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty (CTBT).

April 4, 1993: Presidents Clinton and Yeltsin agree at the Vancouver summit that negotiations on a multilateral nuclear test ban should commence at an early date and that the two governments would consult with each other accordingly.

April 23, 1993: President Clinton releases a White House statement on advancing U.S. relations with Russia and the other New Independent States stating his intention to begin consultations with Russia, our allies and other states on the specific issues related to a CTBT negotiation within the next two months.

July 3, 1993: President Clinton announces in his Saturday radio address to the nation the conclusion of the Presidential review on nuclear testing and a CTBT and states his intention to extend the U.S. testing moratorium and seek to negotiate a CTBT.

August 10, 1993: The Geneva Conference on Disarmament (CD) decides to give its Ad Hoc Committee on a Nuclear Test Ban a mandate to begin negotiations on a CTBT in January, 1994. The Chairman of the AHC is authorized to proceed with intersessional consultations on the specifics of the CTBT mandate and other issues.

October 5, 1993: China conducts first nuclear test since President Clinton's appeal for a global moratorium. White House issues statement regretting China's decision to resume nuclear testing.

December 16, 1993: United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) passes resolution 48/70 by consensus supporting the multilateral negotiation of a CTBT. This is the first time that a consensus resolution in support of a CTBT has been adopted by the UNGA.

January 25, 1994: The CD reconvenes in Geneva and directs the Ad Hoc Committee to negotiate intensively on a universal and multilaterally and effectively verifiable comprehensive nuclear test ban treaty, which would contribute effectively to the prevention of the proliferation of nuclear weapons in all its aspects, to the process of nuclear disarmament and therefore to the enhancement of international peace and security. Negotiations begin in the Ad Hoc Committee.

December 15, 1994: UNGA passes resolution 49/70 by consensus reaffirming its support for multilateral negotiations on a CTBT.

January 30, 1995: APNSA Lake announces that the President has decided to extend the moratorium on U.S. nuclear testing until a CTBT enters into force (assuming signature before September 30, 1996). Lake also announces that the U.S. will withdraw its proposal for a special "right to withdraw" from the CTBT ten years after it enters into force, noting that the President considers the maintenance of a safe and reliable nuclear stockpile to be a supreme national interest of the United States.

May 11, 1995: The NPT Review and Extension Conference agrees to extend the NPT indefinitely and without condition. The Conference adopts "Principles and Objectives for Nuclear Non-Proliferation and Disarmament" calling for the conclusion of negotiations on a CTBT in 1996.

June 13, 1995: President Chirac announces he will resume nuclear testing in September, conduct eight tests, to be completed by May, and be ready to sign a CTBT in the fall of 1996. White House issues statement regretting France's decision to resume nuclear testing.

August 11, 1995: President Clinton announces that the United States will support a true zero yield CTBT banning any nuclear weapon test explosion or any other nuclear explosion.

September 5, 1995: France resumes nuclear testing in the South Pacific. White House issues a statement regretting this action.

September 14, 1995: The United Kingdom announces its support for a zero yield CTBT.

October 20, 1995: The United States, France and the United Kingdom release a joint statement at the United Nations and in capitals stating their intent to sign the Protocols to the South Pacific Nuclear Free Zone (SPNFZ) Treaty "during the first half of 1996."

October 23, 1995: Presidents Clinton and Yeltsin agree at Hyde Park to work together to succeed in getting a zero yield CTBT in 1996.

December 12, 1995: United Nations General Assembly passes resolution 50/65 by consensus calling on the CD to conclude the CTBT so as to enable its signature by the outset of the 51st session of the General Assembly.

January 29, 1996: President Chirac announces the end of French nuclear testing in the South Pacific.

February 29, 1996: Australia submits a 102-page draft CTBT text to the CD and calls on negotiators to reach an agreement by late June.

March 19, 1996: UN Secretary General Boutros Boutros-Ghali appeals to the CD to complete a global treaty banning all nuclear explosions by June 30.

March 25, 1996: U.S., France and the UK sign three Protocols to the South Pacific Nuclear Free Zone Treaty in Suva, Fiji.

April 11, 1996: U.S. signs Protocols I and II to the African Nuclear Weapon Free Zone Treaty in Cairo, Egypt.

April 20, 1996: Moscow Nuclear Summit issues statement on CTBT calling for concluding and signing the CTBT by September, 1996.

May 28, 1996: Nuclear Test Ban Ad Hoc Committee Chairman Jaap Ramaker of the Netherlands tables a draft "Chairman's text" stating he had concluded that the best way to meet the internationally agreed deadline was to "present a complete draft to show the way forward."

June 28, 1996: Chairman Ramaker tables compromise draft text at the conclusion of the second part of the 1996 CD session. White House releases statement by the President from Lyon, France, applauding the compromise draft and calling on members of the CD to return to Geneva in late July prepared to agree to forward a CTBT to the United Nations, so that the Treaty can be approved and opened for signature in the United States in September.

July 29, 1996: China conducts nuclear test and declares it will start a moratorium on nuclear testing effective from July 30, 1996.

August 9, 1996: After consultations in the Ad Hoc Committee, Chairman Ramaker announces that he has confirmed that continuing negotiations on the draft Treaty as a whole would not likely yield further results. Announces one modification in the draft Treaty relating to the number of states required to approve an on-site inspection.

August 16, 1996: Nuclear Test Ban Ad Hoc Committee meets and agrees to a report to the CD stating that "no consensus" could be reached either on adopting the text of the CTBT or on formally passing it to the CD, due to Indian objections.

August 23, 1996: Australian Foreign Minister Alexander Downer announces Australia will sponsor a resolution seeking the endorsement from the United Nations General Assembly of the CTBT and its opening for signature at the earliest possible date.

September 10, 1996: UNGA reconvenes and votes to adopt the CTBT and open it for signature at the earliest possible date by a vote of 158 in favor, 3 opposed (India, Bhutan, Libya), and 5 abstentions (Cuba, Lebanon, Syria, Mauritius, Tanzania).

September 24, 1996: President Clinton is the first world leader to sign the CTBT.

November 19, 1996: Meeting of CTBT signatory states adopted by acclamation the Text on the Establishment of a Preparatory Commission for the CTBT Organization, developed at the CD.

November 20, 1996: Preparatory Commission convenes its first meeting to begin the process of developing Rules of Procedure, Financial Regulations, and other necessary measures for the future operation of the Organization in implementing the Treaty.

September 22, 1997: President Clinton transmits the CTBT to the Senate for advice and consent.

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