Indonesia to ratify the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty
Indonesia is setting a fine example that the US Senate should follow. At the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty Review Conference, Indonesia announced it plans to ratify the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty (CTBT) to ban all nuclear test explosions. The Project for the CTBT reports:
Indonesian Foreign Minister Marty Natalegawa told the Indonesian House of Representatives yesterday that he will officially announce the ratification during the NPT Review Conference next month in New York. “We have been holding off the ratification process since 2002 as we expected the US and other nuclear weapons states to ratify first,” said Natalegawa. “However, we decided there was no point in delaying it. We do not want our policy to be steered by the US’ decisions. We can move it forward with a note that there must be a move to push the US to ratify…The US needs a template it can take as an example when dealing with the [S]enate on ratification.”
In addition to prompting the US to take action, Indonesia’s ratification will mean we are one step closer to making a ban on nuclear weapons testing a reality. Nuclear weapons testing contributes to the spread of nuclear weapons and arms races. Countries seeking to develop nuclear weapons must test them and without testing, cannot “go nuclear.” Meanwhile, countries with nuclear weapons can’t engage in escalating nuclear arms races without nuclear weapons testing to develop more deadly nuclear bombs. According to Reuters:
Indonesia is one of nine remaining nations whose ratification is required for the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty to come into effect. The others are the United States, China, North Korea, Egypt, India, Iran, Israel and Pakistan.