China hopes that the five Nuclear-Weapon States, namely China, France, Russia, Britain and the United States, could abandon the policies of nuclear deterrence based on the first-use of nuclear weapons and make commitments of mutual no-first-use of nuclear weapons, a Chinese arms control official said on Tuesday.
Fu Cong, director-general of the Department of Arms Control of the Foreign Ministry, made the remarks during a press briefing after the leaders of the five countries, also known as the P5, on Monday issued a joint statement on preventing nuclear war and avoiding arms races.
This is the first time for the P5 leaders to issue a joint statement on nuclear weapons, Fu said, noting that it is also another P5 leaders' joint statement on a major international issue since the United Nations Millennium Summit in 2000.
The statement affirms that "a nuclear war cannot be won and must never be fought" and that nuclear weapons should serve defensive purposes, deter aggression, and prevent war, Fu said while elaborating on the major highlights of the statement.
The statement reiterates that none of our nuclear weapons are targeted at each other or at any other state, and emphasizes the importance of preserving and complying with our bilateral and multilateral arms control agreements and commitments, Fu said, adding that it also emphasizes the need to avoid military confrontations and prevent arms races.
As an initiator of the joint statement and a contributor to its content, China has made great contribution to the statement, Fu said, adding that the current statement reflects the largest convergence of the P5's nuclear policies.
"China hopes that the P5 could further their efforts on this basis, abandon the policies of nuclear deterrence based on the first-use of nuclear weapons, make commitments of mutual no-first-use of nuclear weapons, and jointly negotiate and conclude an international legal instrument in this regard," Fu said.
"China is willing to continue to work towards this end," he added.