HC Deb 13 April 1999 vol 329 cc47-8W
Mr. Wigley

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what steps he is taking to seek international agreement to ban weapons of indiscriminate or mass destruction other than anti-personnel mines. [80210]

Mr. George Robertson

The Government have a deep commitment to arms control as a vital element in increasing Britain's security through building wider security structures. Out comprehensive approach to the aims of arms control is evident through our commitment to the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT), the Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty (CTBT), the Chemical Weapons Convention (CWC) and the 1980 UN Weaponry Convention. We are also encouraging universal adherence to the NPT and urging those states who have yet to do so, to ratify the CTBT, which is a prerequisite for the treaty to enter into force. The United Kingdom is playing a leading role in the negotiations to establish a verification Protocol to the Biological and Toxin Weapons Convention (BTWC) and is working for the re-establishment of an Ad Hoc Committee of the Conference on Disarmament to negotiate a Fissile Material Cut-Off Treaty (FMCT). We stand ready to play an active role in these negotiations also.