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CTBT members urge N. Korea to abandon its nuclear program

2015/09/30 10:09

SEOUL, Sept. 30 (Yonhap) -- The 164 countries which ratified a global treaty on prohibiting a nuclear test issued a tough warning message this week against North Korea for its possible provocation.

"We strongly deplore the nuclear tests conducted by the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) in 2006, 2009 and 2013 and express serious concern over its nuclear programme, which undermines the global non-proliferation regime," they said in a declaration.

It was adopted at the Conference on Facilitating the Entry into Force of the Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty (CTBT) held in New York on Tuesday (local time) on the sidelines of the U.N. General Assembly session.

The wording on Pyongyang in this year's document was notably stronger than that in the previous version in 2013.

The North is apparently preparing to fire a long-range rocket in the coming weeks. The reclusive nation also indicated that it could conduct another underground nuclear test.

"In this regard, we urge the DPRK not to conduct any further nuclear tests and to fully comply with all relevant United Nations Security Council (UNSC) Resolutions and the 19 September 2005 Joint Statement of the Six-Party Talks," read the declaration made public by the Foreign Ministry.

The 164 nations called on the North to abandon all of its nuclear weapons and immediately cease all related activities.

Open for signature in 1996, the CTBT is a legally binding global ban on nuclear explosive testing.

But it has failed to go into effect as eight countries have refused to ratify it.

They are the U.S., China, North Korea, India, Pakistan, Israel, Iran, and Egypt.