CTBTO Preparatory Commission
launches CTBTO Spectrum newsletter

The Preparatory Commission for the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty launches a new biannual public newsletter today. CTBTO Spectrum intends to foster public awareness of the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty (CTBT) and provides in-depth information on the activities of the Commission and the establishment of the International Monitoring System (IMS).

Every issue of CTBTO Spectrum focuses on a particular theme, highlighted by an interview with a key specialist and a feature article by an expert. The first issue focuses on the significant role of the Treaty in nuclear non-proliferation and disarmament and gives an overview of the status of the verification regime build-up. The interview is with Sergei A. Ordzhonikidze, Secretary-General of the Conference on Disarmament, the feature article is by Peter Marshall, a test-ban seismology expert. In addition, each issue will include regular columns on the latest developments in verification science, provide new insights on the potential civil and scientific applications of CTBT verification technologies, and will report on the latest session of the Preparatory Commission.

The Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treatybans all nuclear test explosions in any environment. It was adopted by the United Nations General Assembly on 10 September 1996, and opened for signature on 24 September 1996. The Treaty is steadily approaching universality, with 166 signatures and 97 ratifications. To enter into force, however, the CTBT must be ratified by 44 named States, listed in its Annex 2.

Under the terms of the Treaty, a global verification regime to monitor compliance with the Treaty must be operational at the time of entry into force. This verification regime, based on an International Monitoring System of 337 monitoring facilities around the world and the International Data Centre (IDC) in Vienna, provides for a consultation and clarification process, on-site inspections and confidence- building measures. The data collected by the IMS and analyzed by the IDC will be used by States, upon entry into force, to monitor Treaty adherence and, if necessary, to reach a decision as to whether or not the Treaty has been contravened. Today, over one third of the IMS network is operating and transmitting data to the IDC.

The Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty is recognized as a cornerstone in the international nuclear non-proliferation regime. It has the firm backing of the international community, and is supported by cutting edge verification technology which ensures that non-compliance with the Treaty can be detected in a timely manner.

To receive a hardcopy of the CTBTO Spectrum write to info@ctbto.org. You can subscribe to the electronic version via the CTBTO web site.

For further information on the CTBTO, please see www.ctbto.org or contact:
Annika Thunborg, Chief, Public Information  
T    +43 1 26030-6375  
E    annika.thunborgping@ctbtopong.org
M    +43 699 1459 6375       
I    www.ctbto.org