Practice Relating to Nuclear Weapons
In 1996, during a debate in the First Committee of the UN General Assembly, the representative of Malaysia stated:
The Malaysian delegation attaches vital importance to the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT) as a global instrument to check nuclear proliferation. It is the hope of my delegation that the review process to strengthen the NPT, which is due to begin in 1997, will provide us with the opportunity to consider further steps that could be taken by States Parties to fulfil their Treaty obligations, particularly in respect of those stipulated in article VI of the Treaty. We also hope that the review process will seriously consider efforts that could be made to bring into the NPT regime those few countries that remain outside, so as to achieve its much-desired universality. While we would have preferred a categorical ruling by the Court outlawing the threat or use of nuclear weapons, my delegation nevertheless considers the Court’s Advisory Opinion to be an important development in the overall disarmament context.
My delegation is encouraged by the accelerating trend of the establishment of nuclear-weapon-free zones.
My delegation also lauds the signing of the Cairo Declaration on 11 April 1996, which formally established the African Nuclear-Weapon-Free Zone through the Pelindaba Treaty. The establishment of these zones, in addition to those established in Latin America and the Caribbean through the Treaty of Tlatelolco and in the South Pacific through the Treaty of Rarotonga, reflects the genuine aspiration of the peoples of these regions to be free of nuclear insecurity.
In 1996, during a debate in the First Committee of the UN General Assembly, Malaysia stated:
The call for the commencement of negotiations leading to the conclusion of a nuclear weapons convention is a necessary one. It is necessary because the existence of a legal obligation would require early, indeed immediate, action. The existence today of tens of thousands of nuclear weapons in the arsenals of the nuclear-weapon States, 28 years after the signing of the NPT [Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty], is a sobering reminder that negotiations on nuclear disarmament in all its aspects have been carried out neither in good faith nor in earnest. In the days of the cold war the heightened tension between East and West was blamed for the lack of progress in nuclear disarmament. With the demise of that destructive phase of human history there is no longer that excuse. On the contrary, the current constructive phase in international relations would argue for more serious and concerted efforts on the part of the international community to strive for more concrete achievements in the field of nuclear disarmament. This opportunity should not be lost to the international community. It should be grasped, and grasped firmly, as it might not present itself again.