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Comprehensive Nuclear Test-Ban Treaty: CTBT

 

Negotiated: 25 January 1994–14 August 1996 at the CD.
Opened for signature: 24 September 1996 at the United Nations.
Entry into force: Pending.

Introduction and current status. The treaty bans all nuclear weapon test explosions and all peaceful nuclear explosions (PNEs). All five nuclear-weapon states (NWS) have halted nuclear testing. India and Pakistan, both non-signatories, announced an informal moratorium on further nuclear tests after their 1998 tests {ACR 454bSAN98 26.5; 11.6}.

As of 31 December 2004, the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty (CTBT) had received 174 signatures and 120 ratifications. The treaty will enter into force after ratification by the 44 members of the Conference on Disarmament (CD) with nuclear power reactors or nuclear research reactors. So far 33 of them have ratified; another 8 have signed but not ratified, while three have not signed or ratified {see table at end}. The US Senate rejected ratification of the treaty in 1999 {1–13.10.99}, and it has not been reintroduced by the Bush administration. Russia ratified it in 2000 {21.4.00; 17.5.00}.

Conference on Facilitating the Entry into Force of the CTBT
. Article XIV of the treaty provides that if the treaty has not entered into force “three years after the date of the anniversary of its opening for signature,” the Secretary-General of the United Nations could convene a conference to “decide by consensus what measures consistent with international law may be undertaken to accelerate the ratification process” in order to facilitate the treaty’s early entry into force.

The first such conference took place in Vienna from 6–8 October 1999, attended by 92 signatory states and four non-signatories, including Pakistan {6–8.10.99}. The Final Declaration of the conference reaffirmed that states parties would “refrain from acts which would defeat the object and purpose of the Treaty pending its entry into force.”

The second conference met in New York 11–13 November 2001, attended by 108 signatory states, a few observers, and several NGOs {11–13.11.01}. The US boycotted the conference. Russia offered to establish additional monitoring mechanisms once the treaty entered into force to boost confidence in the verification mechanism. A final declaration renewed the commitment to universal ratification and called on states to uphold the nuclear test moratorium.

The third conference took place in Vienna from 3-5 September 2003. It was attended 102 signatory states and a few observers such as non-signatory states, including Pakistan, intergovernmental organizations and NGOs. The final declaration pledged for the Treaty’s entry into force through the adoption of twelve specific measures {ACR 608bCTB03 3-5.9}.

Organization. The CTBTO PrepCom will take necessary steps to ensure the immediate operation of the treaty when it enters into force.

The first PrepCom in 1997 established the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty Organization (CTBTO), headed by Germany’s Wolfgang Hoffman, as the treaty’s implementing organization {3–11.3.97}. PrepCom sessions convene two working groups: Working Group A deals with budgetary and administrative matters, and Working Group B deals with verification matters.

Verification. An Ad Hoc Group of Scientific Experts was set up by the CD to “consider international cooperative measures to detect and identify seismic events.” The group conducted three trial data exchange tests for a proposed world seismic data network, including GSETT-1, operational from 15 October to 15 December 1984 {15.10.84; 24.1.85; 4.4.85}, and GSETT-2, operational from 22 April to 2 June 1991 {28.2.91; 4.9.91; 26.2.93}. GSETT-2 achieved a 90 percent detection threshold, that is, a 90 percent probability of locating a seismic event of magnitude 4.7 or greater.

GSETT-3, operational from 1 January 1995 until 20 February 2000, was able to reliably detect a seismic event with at least a 3.5 magnitude in areas with a high number of sensors. The data was sent to the Prototype International Data Center (PIDC) in Arlington, Virginia, operated by the United States.

At its August 1996 meeting, the Ad Hoc Group recommended that GSETT-3 continue until the PrepCom assumed responsibility for monitoring and verification. It also recommended financing for establishment of the CTBTO’s International Monitoring System (IMS), which is intended to uniformly detect seismic events of at least magnitude 4.0. The IMS encompasses four types of data centers hosted by members of the Treaty:

• Seismic-acoustic monitoring stations, for detecting earth tremors created by underground explosions;
• Radionuclide stations, for detection of both radiation and rare noble gasses emitted from either an underground or atmospheric explosion;
• Hydroacoustic stations, for detecting wavelengths created in large bodies of water by underground explosions; and
• Infrasound stations, for detecting wavelengths propagating through the atmosphere. {13.9.96; http://www.ctbto.org; http://www.pidc.org}

Under GSETT-3, the Arlington PIDC received raw data from each new station in the IMS as it came on line in its respective host country, analyzed the data, and distributed the finished data products to interested states parties. The finished products interpreted and summarized IMS data as mandated by Section F of the treaty’s protocol {see treaty outline below}. Parties would also have access to the raw data.

In 1997, the PrepCom began the process of assuming responsibility for developing the International Monitoring System. This involved transferring data and software from the Arlington PIDC to the CTBTO’s International Data Center (IDC) in Vienna. During the transition period, the two Data Centers had duplicate functions, including data reception, data processing, and data distribution. Four separate software packages were successively developed and tested at the Arlington PIDC, prior to installation of the software at the Vienna IDC. All operational problems between the IMS stations and the PIDC were worked out before the transfer of technology to Vienna, including problems with communications, data processing, and software interoperability {24–26.8.99; see also http://www.pidc.org}.

In March 1998, the Vienna IDC began experimental transfers of data from the PIDC. The CTBTO started producing test products for the Vienna IDC to analyze in May 1998. In 1999, the CTBTO began sending states parties products containing information gathered from both the PIDC and the IDC for the first time; and it began the certification of completed IMS stations and the design and procurement of data authentication devices. Also during 1999, the first four infrasound stations in the IMS became operational. Four additional infrasound stations were under construction by the end of the year.

By early 2000, under the GSETT-3 program, the Arlington PIDC had been operating and distributing products and data for just over five years. A decision was made at the 11th session of Working Group B (7–18 February 2000) that the Vienna IDC was ready to start the routine distribution of products and data, and that the role of the PIDC would end on 20 February 2000 {3.20.01; see also http://www.pidc.org}.

The Vienna IDC and the global IMS are now well under way. Over 100 stations with various types of sensors are transmitting data to the IDC. The IMS comprises 50 primary seismic stations, 120 auxiliary seismic stations, 11 hydroacoustic monitors, 60 infrasound stations, along with 80 radionuclide stations (40 of which also monitor for rare noble gases), supported by 16 radionuclide laboratories. In all 321 monitoring stations are planned {see the table below}.

In 2002, China and Iran withdrew their contributions to the monitoring system in response to the US refusal to ratify the CTBT and its decision to cut its funding for the CTBTO {ACR 608bCTB02 29.3}. In 2003, Russia asked the United States to maintain a freeze on testing and warned that it would end its moratorium on nuclear testing if the United States resumes nuclear testing {ACR 608bCTB03 22.5; 1.8}.

Pakistan declared it is not considering signing the Treaty {ACR 608bCTB03 5.3, 23.12}. In 2004, Japan hosted the second minister’s meeting on CTBT to facilitate the early entry into force of the treaty {ACR 608bCTB04 23.9}. At the 59th session of the UNGA, CTBTO Executive Secretary Wolfgang Hoffmann urged the United States to sign and ratify the CTBT {ACR 608bCTB04 21.10}

Independent Commission
An Independent Commission on the Verifiability of the CTBT, consisting of international experts, was established in August 2000 with British and German funding. In October 2000 the commission issued a report concluding that the treaty is “verifiable with a high degree of probability” {30.10.00}.

Current moratoria and testing. The USSR initiated a moratorium when Gorbachev announced on 26 October 1991 that he was suspending tests for one year. On 8 April 1992, France began a moratorium. It resumed testing in 1995 and permanently ended it on 28 January 1996. The US Congress halted testing in 1992 {24.9.92}. This led to a halt in British testing as well, because Britain used the US test site {28.2.93; 4.7.93}. China announced a testing moratorium after its last test on 30 July 1996 {box 27.9.97}. In 1998, India and Pakistan both announced moratoria on testing following their May tests {29.5.98; 11.6.98}. {For details of the moratoria see “Positions and Testing” below.}

PNEs. China initiated a small opening in the CTBT for potential future Peaceful Nuclear Explosions by securing language (Article VIII(1)) noting that the treaty Review Conference, meeting ten years after entry into force, could consider permitting them.

History. After years of discussion in a variety of fora, the United States, the United Kingdom, and the Soviet Union reached agreement in Moscow in 1963 to ban nuclear tests in the atmosphere, outer space, and under water in the Partial Test Ban Treaty {see Other Treaties and Negotiations (840-601)}. Negotiators failed to agree on a comprehensive ban that would end tests underground as well, ostensibly because they differed on the number of on-site inspections needed for verification. This issue masked US unwillingness to accept a comprehensive test ban (CTB). Many in the United States wanted to be able to continue to test new nuclear weapons. The preamble of the Partial Test Ban Treaty stated, however, that the parties would continue to seek a CTB.

Despite the calls of many non-nuclear weapon states, no negotiations on a CTB took place until 1977. Meanwhile, in 1970 the Nonproliferation Treaty (NPT) had entered into force {see section 602}. Its Article VI required the nuclear-weapon states parties to proceed toward a CTB and nuclear disarmament. In 1974, the United States and the USSR agreed to the Threshold Test Ban (TTB) Treaty, which led to the Peaceful Nuclear Explosion (PNE) Treaty in 1976 {see ACR Other Treaties and Negotiations (840-605)}.

Finally, in 1977, the USSR, the United Kingdom, and the United States resumed direct negotiations on a CTB, which continued until 1980 {see “Points of Agreement” in the 1986 status subsection}. Under President Reagan, the United States broke off the trilateral negotiations in 1982 {see ACR Other Treaties and Negotiations (840-609)}.

When the United States broke off the trilateral talks, the CD became the focus of efforts to resume test ban negotiations. In 1987, the United States and the USSR agreed to revise the TTB and PNE treaties’ protocols and to move on to a CTB in the Nuclear Testing Talks {see the CTB 1996 status section}.

Following conclusion and ratification of the TTB and PNE protocols, the Bush administration refused to begin test ban talks {22.1.90}. But after the USSR’s 1991 test moratorium, the US Congress legislated a testing moratorium and asked the administration to begin talks {24.9.92}. In 1993, the CD agreed on a negotiating mandate and the Ad Hoc Committee on a Nuclear Test Ban began talks in 1994.

The first plenary session of the 1996 CD established the Nuclear Test Ban Committee, chaired by Jaap Ramaker of the Netherlands, to negotiate the treaty text. The CD eventually agreed on a draft treaty that required ratification by forty states with nuclear facilities, including India, Pakistan, and Israel, for its entry into force; but it failed to reach a consensus on sending the treaty to the UN General Assembly. Australia, along with a group of “Friends of the Treaty,” introduced the treaty in the General Assembly, where it passed with only India, Bhutan, and Libya voting against. The treaty was opened for signature at the UN on 24 September 1996 {see ACR 1996 chronology for full details of events in 1996}.

This ended discussions on CTB in three other fora: the Five-Power Talks among the P-5, the US-Russia Nuclear Testing Talks, and the Partial Test Ban Amendment Conference {see the ACR 1996 status section}.


POSITIONS OF GOVERNMENTS

China
In 1994 China said that it would “put an end to nuclear tests once the treaty comes into effect” {7.10.94; 17.8.95}. This language apparently permitted China to end its moratorium and to test until the CTBT entered into force {ACR box 27.9.96}. China announced a temporary suspension of tests after its last test in 1996 {ACR box 27.9.96}. On signing the treaty, it declared: “In the present-day world, where huge nuclear arsenals and nuclear deterrence policy based on the first use of nuclear weapons still exist, the supreme national interests of China demand that it ensure the safety, reliability, and effectiveness of its nuclear weapons before the goal of eliminating all nuclear weapons is achieved” {Trust and Verify 10.96}.

After the Indian nuclear tests in May 1998, China first said it would adhere to its obligations as a CTBT signatory. Then on 1 June 1998, a Chinese official said that China might consider resuming tests if India and Pakistan entered into a nuclear arms race {11.5.98}, but that China has not officially changed its earlier position. In 2001, following reports that the United States was prepared to acquiesce in Chinese tests, China reiterated its nuclear test moratorium and commitment to the CTBT {2.9.01}.

China requested that the major nuclear weapon states abandon their policy of nuclear deterrence, continue to drastically reduce their nuclear stockpiles, and remove all nuclear weapons from foreign soil. China urged an unconditional commitment to no first use and no threat of use of nuclear weapons against NNWS or NWFZs, and called for an international convention on the complete prohibition and destruction of nuclear weapons. China endorsed the CTBT’s application of verification measures consistent with the treaty’s provisions and opposed the abuse of verification rights by any country in a way that would compromise Chinese sovereignty. China reserved the right to maintain its nuclear arsenal until nuclear weapons are eliminated. China withdrew financial support of the CTBT’s monitoring system in 2002 {608bCTB02 29.3}.

Moratorium. After the US failure to ratify, China’s arms control negotiator Sha Zukang affirmed: "China solemnly vows not to carry out any nuclear tests before ratifying the CTBT, and to honor all obligations under it after its ratification” {Xinhua 25.11.99 in FBIS-CHI 26.11.99}.

Tests and test site. China initially conducted tests in the atmosphere {see ACR 840-601} and then underground at Lop Nor in Xinjiang province {3.10.84; see also ACR 608bCTB 1.8.93; Xinhua 14.9.89 in FBIS-CHI 18.9.89; and Zhu Daqiang in Zhongguo Xinwen She 11.10.89 in FBIS-CH 17.10.89}. In the past, China did not normally announce its tests; various Western observatories and the US DOE made them public {box-list of tests, end 1988}. However, in 1992, China began announcing its tests {see box below}. It conducted two tests in 1996, but has conducted no known tests since signing the CTBT in 1996 {24.9.97}. A seismic event was detected at China’s Lop Nor test site on June 1999. Whether or not the event was a nuclear test remains undetermined {box 1.5.99}.

Simulation. China does not yet have a simulation capability {18.6.94} but has shown interest in it {25.7.95}. According to Hu Side, president of the China Academy of Engineering Physics, “China has begun studies on [stockpile stewardship] but not figured out a plan for that.” He added that “China will find a less expensive method if it decides to work on a kind of [stewardship program]” {Zou Yunhua in China and the CTBT Negotiations, Center for International Security and Cooperation 12.98}.

France or Russia may have agreed to share test data, in order to assist in simulation {ACR box 30.8.96}; secretly, the United States may as well {box 8.6.96}. In 1999, a US government commission determined that China “targeted US nuclear test data for espionage collection, which if successful would reduce its [high-performance computer] requirements.” Fast, large-capacity computers are needed for simulation {box 1.5.99}. In 2001, US intelligence sources claimed to have detected evidence of what they called weapon-related experiments short of actual explosions, which could have been Chinese subcritical tests {ACR 608e1CTB01 9.4; 6.7; 20.7; 7.12}.

France
France halted nuclear testing “forever” in January 1996. When France had tested, it usually announced its tests {2.6.90}. It disbanded its nuclear testing agency in 1998 {23.6.98}.

Tests and test sites. France conducted four atmospheric tests at Tanezrouft Desert and nine underground tests at Ecker, both in Algeria, from 1960 to 1966. These tests had yields ranging from 3.6 to 127 kt. The tests purportedly involved the miniaturization of the AN-11 bomb, as well as investigations into peaceful applications of nuclear explosives.

Between 1966 and 1996, France also conducted tests at Pacific Test Sites in Mururoa and Fangataufa {1.12.88; box 27.12.95}. At Mururoa, France conducted 41 atmospheric tests (including four safety tests, two with no definite dates) and 143 underground tests (15 with no definite date; some may have been safety tests). At Fangataufa, France conducted five atmospheric tests and nine underground tests.

The estimated total megatonnage of French tests during its 32-year test series is 13.8 megatons, more than 90 percent of which occurred in 1968, 1970, 1971, and 1974. Around 20 tests were employed for the development of each French warhead {Arkin and Fieldhouse, British, French, and Chinese Nuclear Weapons 1994}.

Simulation. France will use simulation developed in the final testing campaign of 1995–1996 {13.6.95, box 14.6.95, 5.9.95; box 1.11.99}. In 1996, France signed a secret agreement with the United States to share information on stockpile stewardship, which gave France access to US nuclear test data and computer simulations. The United States will be given access to French simulation facilities {box 4.6.96; Zou Yunhua in China and the CTBT Negotiations, Center for International Security and Cooperation, 12.98}.

France has its own nuclear fusion ignition facility and has started construction on a DARHT-style facility for hydrodynamic experiments. The planned Laser Megajoule (LMJ) ignition system would study the physical aspects of thermonuclear fusion by reproducing temperature and density conditions of a nuclear explosion with laser beams. These projects could violate the treaty by creating possibilities for studies in new warheads with low pollution characteristics {boxes 1.9.98; 1.11.99}.

The Directorate of Military Applications of the French Atomic Energy Commission (CEA) announced on 6 December that it had successfully concluded its first experiment validating the Airix X ray system {box 1.11.99}, an X ray generator consisting of a high power and high intensity linear electron accelerator that “observes” the simulated weapon’s performance. The Airix would work in tandem with the Laser Megajoule. In 2000, the Directorate announced an 8-year, 15 bn Franc nuclear simulation plan {see 608e1CTB00 8.3}. The CEA acquired Europe’s most powerful computer in 2002 for nuclear weapon simulations. {608e1CTB02 10.1}

Germany
Germany “understood” that the CTBT would not be interpreted or applied “in such a way as to prejudice or prevent research into and development of controlled thermonuclear fusion” {ACDA website 1.97; ACDA Fact Sheet 30.5.97; Programme for Promoting Nuclear Non-Proliferation 4th Quarter 96}.

India
India refused to sign the CTBT because the treaty is not linked to a time-bound process for general nuclear disarmament. India also objected to its inclusion as one of the parties whose ratification is necessary for entry-into-force, fearing this could lead to sanctions. It wanted the treaty to ban all development of nuclear weapons {20.8.96}. However, after its nuclear tests in May 1998 {11.5.98}, India dropped the requirement for linkage to nuclear disarmament {6.7.98} and expressed its inclination to sign and ratify the treaty in time for its entry into force, depending on the progress of its negotiations with the nuclear powers {24.9.98}. Despite some talk by senior Indian leaders in 1999 and 2000 hinting at Indian signature of the treaty, India had not signed it as of the end of 2002. In 2003, India said it would feel free to resume nuclear tests if the United States ever did so {ACR 608bCTB03 9.1}.

Tests and test site. India’s single test in 1974 and five tests in 1998 all took place in Pokhran. India has announced all of its tests. Foreign observers have expressed skepticism about the claimed yields of Indian tests {see box 30.5.98 for details about the seismic data on the 1998 Indian tests} {11.5.98; 16.9.98}. Following the tests, India declared a testing moratorium {29.5.98} and extended this moratorium in 1999 until it signed the CTBT {20.1.99}.

Simulation. Indian scientists claimed that India can conduct subcritical experiments {box 1.9.98; box 1.5.99; 28.11.99}; but India’s defense minister claimed in May 1999 that India did not plan to conduct such tests {box 1.5.99}.

Iran
Iran stated that the CTBT only partially limited the further development of nuclear weapons and that a “meaningful” CTBT would have a “phased program for nuclear disarmament.” Iran asked that NTM should be phased out as the IMS is further developed. Iran withdrew its contribution to the CTBT’s monitoring system in 2002 {608bCTB02 29.3}.

Pakistan
Pakistan wanted India to sign the treaty before it would sign. Following its nuclear tests in 1998, Pakistan declared a test moratorium {11.6.98}, indicated that it might no longer link its policy to India’s actions {14.7.98}, and expressed its willingness to accede to the treaty {23.9.98}. After India’s declaration of a new nuclear doctrine on 17 August, however, Pakistan said it would not sign the CTBT if India followed up this declaration with actual deployment of weapons {20.8.99}. Pakistan’s Cabinet apparently decided in December 1999 that signature was in the national interest. However, strong opposition from hard-line religious and political groups immediately emerged. In 2001, Pakistan’s Army Corps Commanders reportedly agreed to the country’s military government signing the treaty {19.3.01}. However, as of 31 December 2002 Pakistan still had not signed the CTBT. In 2003, Pakistan said that it was considering signing the CTBT since the treaty had no prospect of entering into force {ACR 608bCTBT03 6.3}. Later, Pakistan said it would not ratify the CTBT {28.12}.

Tests and test site. Pakistan conducted all its tests in Chagai in 1998 {see box 30.5.98 for details about the seismic data on the Pakistani tests}. Pakistan announced its tests, but skepticism remained about the number and claimed yields of the tests {16.9.98; 28.5.98}.

Russia and other former Soviet republics
Of the former Soviet republics, only Russia retains the capability to produce nuclear weapons and to test them. Russia ratified the CTBT in 2000.

Moratorium. Yeltsin declared a one-year Russian moratorium on testing in 1991 {26.10.91}, extended it to July 1993 {19.10.92}, and then made it indefinite, although reserving the right to resume testing {21.10.93}.

Tests and test sites. The Soviet Union began announced tests when its first moratorium ended in 1987 {26.2.87}. Soviet tests took place underground at Semipalatinsk in northeast Kazakhstan (last test 19 October 1989) and at Novaya Zemlya (last test 25 October 1990). PNE tests have taken place outside these sites {see the 1989 status section for 605}. As the Soviet Union was breaking apart after its August 1991 coup, Kazakhstan closed Semipalatinsk {29.8.91}. The site was fully dismantled in 2000 {29.7.00}. In February 1997, Kazakhstan’s parliament voted not to ratify its lease agreement with Russia for the Kasputin Yar testing ground {box 1.3.97}.

Russia closed the Novaya Zemlya site in 1991, although preparations for tests there continued for some time {27.2.92; 27.5.92; 16–17.9.92; 605b 10.2.93}. A seismic event occurred near Novaya Zemlya in 1997, prompting the United States to accuse Russia of conducting a nuclear test. The United States formally withdrew its allegation when it became clear that the seismic event was an earthquake {4.11.97}. {See ACR 608CTB98 for details.}

In September 1999, US intelligence agencies detected two separate seismic events at the Novaya Zemlya test site. The events might have been small nuclear blasts, conventional explosions with nuclear materials (indicating a subcritical experiment), or natural occurrences. Despite sharp controversy in the US Senate and intelligence community, the Clinton Administration announced that it trusted Russian claims that the events were subcritical experiments {box 1.9.99}. In 2001, the US intelligence community was reportedly divided over whether Russia was conducting hydronuclear tests at Novaya Zemlya in violation of the CTBT {ACR 608e1CTB01 4.3}. In 2002, the United States once again raised fears that Russia was preparing to resume testing at Novaya Zemlya. Russia denied the charge, but announced its decision to upgrade the facility {ACR 608e1CTB02 11.5, 27.6}. In 2003, as the United States was considering further development of nuclear weapons, Russia asked for a permanent halt in nuclear testing {22.5}. Russia also said that it might end its moratorium on nuclear testing if the United States resumed testing {3.8.03}.

Simulation. Russia believes it can rely on simulation for the maintenance of its nuclear arsenal and wanted the United States to end restrictions on Russian imports of US supercomputers needed for this purpose {ACR box 27.9.96 and box 31.12.96}. Russia has more recently developed a supercomputer capable of simulating nuclear explosions {ACR 608e1CTB01 2.8}.

Subcritical experiments. Russia reportedly began subcritical tests in 1995 {box 1.12.98}. Reports of Russian subcritical experiments surfaced in 1997 and 1998 {ACR 615bNUC97 Box 1.8; box 1.9.98}. Russia conducted five such experiments in September–December 1998 {1.12.98}. Russia also conducted several such tests in 2000 {see ACR list in 608e1CTB}. Russia has been unwilling to discuss transparency on subcritical experiments with the USA {box 1.9.98}, although the United States offered in late September or early October 1999 to cooperate on establishing better bilateral methods of monitoring subcritical experiments to ease suspicions on each side about illegal testing activity. {ACR box 1.9.99}

United Kingdom
The United Kingdom was forced to halt tests during the US moratorium {28.2.93; 4.7.93} and never resumed them. Britain had wanted to conduct three further tests if the US moratorium ended {4.7.93}.

Tests and test site. Britain initially conducted atmospheric tests in Australia (15 tests) and used Christmas Island for its final six atmospheric tests (1957–1958). In 1962 it conducted 23 underground tests at US sites. Many of these tests were announced by DOE or by Britain {See ADIU Report March–April 1985}.

Simulation. Britain plans to use simulation to maintain its nuclear weapons {28.4.94} and is probably cooperating with the United States in this area. Britain conducted a joint subcritical test with the United States in 2002 in Nevada {ACR 608e1CTB02 14.2}.

United States
The United States played a leading role in finalizing the CTBT, but the US Senate rejected ratification of the treaty {1–13.10.99}. In January 2000, President Clinton appointed a task force headed by Gen. John Shalikashvili to mobilize support for eventual Senate ratification of the treaty. The task force’s report urged US ratification of the treaty and recommended a number of steps to meet Senate objections to ratification {4.1.01}. The Bush administration has, however, refused to resubmit the Treaty to the Senate {7.7.01}, and it decided to fund only the part of CTBTO’s expenses relating to the IMS {21–23.8.01}.

In 2001, the Bush administration requested funds to shorten the time needed to resume testing from the current three years to 18 months (or less). The House of Representatives rejected the request {27.6.01}. Unnamed Bush administration officials were reported to have hinted that the administration foresaw a need for the United States and China to conduct nuclear tests. The administration’s plan was, reportedly, to acquiesce in Chinese nuclear tests in return for Chinese acquiescence in US missile defense plans. The administration denied that report, however {2.9.01}. Throughout 2002, the Bush administration reviewed and continued to discuss plans to improve US readiness to resume testing {608BCTB02 8.1, 14.2, 9.3, 14.8, 17.11; 608e1CTB02 12.3}. In 2003, the Bush administration requested funds to enhance the DOE’s readiness to resume nuclear testing {3.2.03}. The US National Nuclear Security Administration expressed a need to reduce the time required to resume testing from 24-36 months to 18 months {14.10}.

Tests and test sites. The first Bush administration’s refusal to resume the Nuclear Testing Talks in 1992 {31.2.92} and the end of the Cold War led Congress to enact a moratorium on testing and to direct the president to resume the Nuclear Testing Talks {24.9.92; box 15.5.93}. Clinton extended the moratorium from the congressional deadline of 1 July 1993 to September 1994 {3.7.93} and from that time to the time a treaty banning tests entered into force (assuming it was signed before 30 September 1996), unless US national security was deemed endangered {31.1.95}. The moratorium has subsequently been maintained.

Most US tests occurred at the National Testing Site (NTS) in Nevada. Tests below five kilotons were not announced unless they vented radioactivity beyond the perimeter of the NTS {1.11.89}.

Simulation. The United States began the Science-Based Stockpile Stewardship Program (SBSSP) in 1996 {box 30.4.96; box 30.8.96} to permit the retention of US nuclear weapons without explosive testing {box 27.9.96}. It has well-developed simulation technology {21.6.95} and has been adding even more advanced technology and equipment {box 30.6.97}. It has three primary SBSSP facilities: the National Ignition Facility (NIF), the Contained Firing Facility (both at the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory), and the DARHT facility. {Zou Yunhua in China and the CTBT Negotiations, Center for International Security and Cooperation, 12.98}. SBSSP and NIF both faced troubles and were criticized in DOE and GAO audits. In 2000, SBSSP nevertheless performed the first ever computer simulation of a warhead’s primary explosion and a 3D simulation of a thermonuclear explosion {ACR 608e1CTB00 4.2; 20.7}.

In 2001, the GAO pointed out huge time and cost overruns in the construction of the NIF {ACR 608e1CTB01 1.6}. By the year end, construction of the NIF was reportedly progressing well, with 95 percent of work on the conventional facilities complete {ACR 608e1CTB late December}. In 2002, the United States performed the first full-system three-dimensional simulation of a nuclear weapon explosion {ACR 608e1CTB02 17.3}.

Subcritical experiments. The DOE has complemented simulation capabilities with subcritical experiments at the NTS in Nevada. The experiments involve detonating chemical explosives containing less than a half pound of plutonium in underground chambers at NTS {ACR box 1.2.99; box 1.9.99}.

Two subcritical experiments were conducted in 1997 and three in 1998 {ACR box 30.6.97; box 1.5.98; box 1.9.98; box 1.12.98}. A sixth experiment was run in February 1999 {box 1.2.99}. A new series of subcritical experiments was initiated at the NTS on 30 September 1999 under the project name “Oboe.” The second test, “Oboe-2,” took place on 9 November; Oboe-3 was conducted on 3 February 2000 {box 30.11.99}. More tests in the Oboe series took place in 2000 {see list in ACR 608e1CTB00}. The United States conducted a joint subcritical experiment with the UK in 2002 {ACR 608e1CTB02 14.2}.

A number of countries remain opposed to these experiments, claiming that they violate the spirit if not the letter of the CTBT {2.7.97; 27.4–8.5.98}. Some of the DOE’s planned fusion research utilizing the NIF could also violate the treaty {ACR box 1.9.98; box 30.11.99}.

OUTLINE OF THE TREATY

PREAMBLE


Article I (Basic obligations):

1. Each State party undertakes not to carry out any nuclear weapon test explosion or any other nuclear explosion, and to prohibit and prevent any such nuclear explosion at any place under its jurisdiction or control.
2. Each State party undertakes to refrain from causing, encouraging, or in any way participating in the carrying out of any nuclear weapon test explosion or any other nuclear explosion.

Implementing organization Article II (Organization): Establishes:

    • The Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty Organization (CTBTO) at Vienna to ensure the treaty’s implementation and provide a forum for consultation and cooperation;
    • The Conference of the States Parties to oversee the treaty’s implementation;
    • The Executive Council, with a membership of 51 states-parties, to be the principal decision-making body of the CTBTO;
    • The Technical Secretariat to assist states-parties to implement the treaty and carry out verification and other functions.
      Article III (National implementation measures)
      Verification and complianceArticle IV (Verification) and the Protocol establish the verification regime.
    • International Monitoring System (IMS): To detect and identify nuclear explosions prohibited under article I. IMS will consist of 50 primary and 120 auxiliary seismological stations equipped to detect seismic activity and distinguish between natural events—such as earthquakes and nuclear explosions; 80 radionuclide stations—40 of them capable of detecting noble gases—designed to identify radioactive particles released during a nuclear explosion; 60 infrasound and 11 hydroacoustic stations designed to pick up the sound of a nuclear explosion in the atmosphere or under water, respectively.
    • International Data Center (IDC): To receive and analyze data from the monitoring stations
    • Consultation and clarification: States-parties must provide clarification of an ambiguous eventwithin 48 hours of receiving such a request from another state-party or the Executive Council.
    • On-site inspection: If a matter cannot be resolved through consultation and clarification, each state-party can request an on-site inspection. The procedures for on-site inspections are established in part II of the Protocol.
    • Confidence-building measures: Each state-party to voluntarily notify the Technical Secretariat of any single chemical explosion using 300 metric tons or more of TNT-equivalent blasting material on its territory.

Article V (Measures to redress a situation and to ensure compliance, including sanctions): Empowers the Conference to revoke a State’s rights under the treaty, to recommend to states-partiescollective measures, or to bring the issue to the attention of the United Nations.

DISPUTES

Article VI (Settlement of disputes): Describes mechanisms for settling disputes concerning the application or interpretation of the treaty.

AMENDMENTS AND REVIEW

Article VII (Amendments): Each state-party has the right to propose amendments to the treaty, the Protocol or the annexes to the Protocol at any time after the treaty’s entry into force. Amendments require the approval of a majority of states parties at an amendment conference with no party casting a negative vote.

Article VIII (Review of the Treaty): A review conference will be held 10 years after the treaty’s entry into force, “unless otherwise decided by a majority of the States Parties.” Further review conferences may be held at intervals of 10 years thereafter, or more frequently, if the Conference so decides in the preceding year. At the request of any state-party, the conference may “consider the possibility of permitting the conduct of underground nuclear explosions for peaceful purposes.” If it permits such explosions by consensus, then the review conference “shall commence work without delay, with a view to recommending to States Parties an appropriate amendment to this treaty that shall preclude any military benefits of such nuclear explosions.”

DURATION AND WITHDRAWAL

Article IX (Duration and withdrawal): The treaty is of unlimited duration.

OTHER PROVISIONS

Articles X, XI, XII and XIII: The status of the Protocol and the annexes; signature; ratification; and accession.

ENTRY INTO FORCE

Article XIV (Entry into force): The treaty will enter into force 180 days after the 44 states listed in annex 2 to the treaty have deposited their instruments of ratification with the UN Secretary-General, “but in no case earlier than two years after its opening for signature.”

If the treaty has not entered into force “three years after the date of the anniversary of its opening for signature,” the Secretary-General of the United Nations could convene a conference to “decide by consensus what measures consistent with international law may be undertaken to accelerate the ratification process” in order to facilitate the treaty’s early entry into force.

ADDITIONAL PROVISIONS

Article XV (Reservations): The treaty’s provisions are not subject to reservations.

Article XVI (Depositary): The Secretary-General of the United Nations is the treaty’s depositary.

Article XVII (Authentic texts): Treaty texts in Arabic, Chinese, English, French, Russian and Spanish are authentic texts.

PROTOCOL

Part I: Describes the International Monitoring System (IMS) and outlines the functions of the International Data Center (IDC).
Part II: Procedures for on-site inspections.
Part III: Confidence-building measures under article IV (Verification).

ANNEXES

1. Lists the 337 facilities that make up the IMS
2. Describes parameters for standard event screening by the IDC.

KNOWN NUCLEAR TEST EXPLOSIONS AS OF 31 DECEMBER 2001


The table shown below includes announced tests plus tests not announced but detected by seismic means and announced by other public institutions.

Country

First

Last

Number

US

6.7.45

23.9.92

1030

Russia

29.8.49

25.10.90

714

France

13.2.60

28.1.96

211

China

16.10.64

30.7.96

45

UK

3.10.52

26.11.91

44

India

8.5.74

13.5.98

6

Pakistan

28.5.98

30.5.98

4

Total

 

 

2054

Sources differ on the numbers and dates of tests by different countries. The table presents IDDS best estimates based on the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists, April 1992 and May-June 1995; Arms Control Today, November 1992 and August 1996; and ADIU Report 78.85.

PLANNED AND CURRENT IMS STATIONS BY STATE PARTY


The table shows the locations of the 321 stations and 16 radionuclide labs expected to comprise the full-scale International Monitoring System.

State

Seismic, Main

Seismic, Aux.

Radio-nuclide

Radionuclide

Hydro-acoustic

Infra-sound

Argentina

1

2

3

1

 

2

Armenia

 

1

 

 

 

 

Australia

4

3

7

1

1

5

Austria

 

 

 

1

 

 

Bangladesh

 

1

 

 

 

 

Bolivia

1

1

 

 

 

1

Botswana

 

1

 

 

 

 

Brazil

1

2

2

1

 

1

Cameroon

 

 

1

 

 

 

Canada

3

6

4

1

1

1

Cape Verde

 

 

 

 

 

1

Cen.Af.Rep.

1

 

 

 

 

1

Chile

 

2

2

 

1

2

China

2

4

3

1

 

2

Columbia

1

 

 

 

 

 

Cook Islands

 

1

1

 

 

 

Costa Rica

 

1

 

 

 

 

Cote d’Ivoire

1

 

 

 

 

1

Czech Rep.

 

1

 

 

 

 

Denmark

 

1

 

 

 

1

Djibouti

 

1

 

 

 

1

Ecuador

 

 

1

 

 

1

Egypt

1

1

 

 

 

 

Ethiopia

 

1

1

 

 

 

Fiji

 

1

1

 

 

 

Finland

1

 

 

1

 

 

France

1

2

6

1

2

5

Gabon

 

1

 

 

 

 

Ger.-S. Afr.1

 

1

 

 

 

 

Germany

1

 

1

 

 

2

Greece

 

1

 

 

 

 

Guatemala

 

1

 

 

 

 

Iceland

 

1

1

 

 

 

Indonesia

 

6

 

 

 

 

Iran

1

2

1

 

 

1

Israel

 

1

 

1

 

 

Italy

 

2

 

1

 

 

Japan

1

5

2

1

 

1

Jordan

 

1

 

 

 

 

Kazakhstan

1

3

 

 

 

1

Kiribati

 

 

1

 

 

 

Korea, R. of

1

 

 

 

 

 

Kuwait

 

 

1

 

 

 

Kyrgyzstan

 

1

 

 

 

 

Libya

 

 

1

 

 

 

Madagascar

 

1

 

 

 

1

Malaysia

 

 

1

 

 

 

Mali

 

1

 

 

 

 

Mauritania

 

 

1

 

 

 

Mexico

 

3

1

 

1

 

Mongolia

1

 

1

 

 

1

Morocco

 

1

 

 

 

 

Namibia

 

1

 

 

 

1

Nepal

 

1

 

 

 

 

New Zealand

 

3

2

1

 

1

Niger

1

 

1

 

 

 

Norway

2

2

1

 

 

1

Oman

 

1

 

 

 

 

Pakistan

1

 

 

 

 

1

Palau

 

 

 

 

 

1

Panama

 

 

1

 

 

 

Papua N.G.

 

2

1

 

 

1

Paraguay

1

 

 

 

 

1

Peru

 

2

 

 

 

 

Philippines

 

2

1

 

 

 

Portugal

 

 

1

 

1

1

Romania

 

1

 

 

 

 

Russia

6

13

8

1

 

4

Samoa

 

1

 

 

 

 

Saudi Arabia

1

1

 

 

 

 

Senegal

 

1

 

 

 

 

Solomon Isl.

 

1

 

 

 

 

South Africa

1

1

1

1

 

1

Spain

1

 

 

 

 

 

Sri Lanka

 

1

 

 

 

 

Sweden

 

1

1

 

 

 

Switzerland

 

1

 

 

 

 

Thailand

1

 

1

 

 

 

Tunisia

1

 

 

 

 

1

Turkey

1

 

 

 

 

 

Turkmenist.

1

 

 

 

 

 

Uganda

 

1

 

 

 

 

UK

 

1

4

1

2

4

Ukraine

1

 

 

 

 

 

Undecided

1

1

1

 

 

1

USA

5

12

11

1

2

8

Venezuela

 

2

 

 

 

 

Zambia

 

1

 

 

 

 

Zimbabwe

 

1

 

 

 

 

Totals:

50

120

80

16

11

60

1. Germany and South Africa jointly fund a seismic station in Antarctica.

COMPREHENSIVE TEST BAN TREATY

Signatures and Ratifications as of 31 December 2003
(193 states are shown. See notes at end.)

Note

State

Signed

Ratified

 

Afghanistan

 24 Sept 2003

24-Sep-03

 

Albania

27-Sep-96

23-Apr-03

***

Algeria

15-Oct-96

 11 July 2003

 

Andorra

24-Sep-96

 

 

Angola

27-Sep-96

 

 

Antigua & Barbuda

16-Apr-97

 

***

Argentina

24-Sep-96

4-Dec-98

 

Armenia

1-Oct-96

 

***

Australia

24-Sep-96

9-Jul-98

***

Austria

24-Sep-96

13-Mar-98

 

Azerbaijan

28-Jul-97

2-Feb-99

 

Bahamas

 

 

 

Bahrain

24-Sep-96

12 Apr 2004 

***

Bangladesh

24-Oct-96

8-Mar-00

 

Barbados

 

 

 

Belarus

24-Sep-96

13-Sep-00

***

Belgium

24-Sep-96

29-Jun-99

 

Belize

14-Nov-01

 26 Mar 2004

 

Benin

27-Sep-96

6-Mar-01

 

Bhutan

 

 

 

Bolivia

24-Sep-96

4-Oct-99

 

Bosnia & Herzegovina

24-Sep-96

 

 

Botswana

16-Sep-02

28-Oct-02

***

Brazil

24-Sep-96

24-Jul-98

 

Brunei Darussalam

22-Jan-97

 

***

Bulgaria

24-Sep-96

29-Sep-99

 

Burkina Faso

27-Sep-96

17-Apr-02

 

Burundi

24-Sep-96

 

 

Cambodia

26-Sep-96

10-Nov-00

 

Cameroon

16-Nov-01

 

***

Canada

24-Sep-96

18-Dec-98

 

Cape Verde

1-Oct-96

 

 

Central African Republic

19-Dec-01

 

 

Chad

8-Oct-96

 

***

Chile

24-Sep-96

12-Jul-00

**

China

24-Sep-96

 

**

Colombia

24-Sep-96

 

 

Comoros

12-Dec-96

 

 

Congo

11-Feb-97

 

 

Cook Islands

5-Dec-97

 

 

Costa Rica

24-Sep-96

25-Sep-01

 

Cote d'Ivoire

25-Sep-96

11-Mar-03

 

Croatia

24-Sep-96

2-Mar-01

 

Cuba

 

 

 

Cyprus

24-Sep-96

 18 July 2003

 

Czech Republic

12-Nov-96

11-Sep-97

*

Dem. People's Rep. of Korea

 

 

***

Dem. Rep. of the Congo

4-Oct-96

 28 Sept 2004

 

Denmark

24-Sep-96

21-Dec-98

 

Djibouti

21-Oct-96

 

 

Dominica

 

 

 

Dominican Republic

3-Oct-96

 

 

Ecuador

24-Sep-96

12-Nov-01

**

Egypt

14-Oct-96

 

 

El Salvador

24-Sep-96

11-Sep-98

 

Equatorial Guinea

9-Oct-96

 

 

Eritrea

 11 Nov 2003

11-Nov-03

 

Estonia

20-Nov-96

13-Aug-99

 

Ethiopia

25-Sep-96

 

 

Fiji

24-Sep-96

10-Oct-96

***

Finland

24-Sep-96

15-Jan-99

***

France

24-Sep-96

6-Apr-98

 

Gabon

7-Oct-96

20-Sep-00

 

Gambia

9-Apr-03

 

 

Georgia

24-Sep-96

27-Sep-02

***

Germany

24-Sep-96

20-Aug-98

 

Ghana

3-Oct-96

 

 

Greece

24-Sep-96

21-Apr-99

 

Grenada

10-Oct-96

19-Aug-98

 

Guatemala

20-Sep-99

 

 

Guinea

3-Oct-96

 

 

Guinea-Bissau

11-Apr-97

 

 

Guyana

7-Sep-00

7-Mar-01

 

Haiti

24-Sep-96

 

 

Holy See

24-Sep-96

18-Jul-01

 

Honduras

25-Sep-96

 30 Oct 2003

***

Hungary

25-Sep-96

13-Jul-99

 

Iceland

24-Sep-96

26-Jun-00

*

India

 

 

**

Indonesia

24-Sep-96

 

**

Iran, Islamic Republic of

24-Sep-96

 

 

Iraq

 

 

 

Ireland

24-Sep-96

15-Jul-99

**

Israel

25-Sep-96

 

***

Italy

24-Sep-96

1-Feb-99

 

Jamaica

11-Nov-96

13-Nov-01

***

Japan

24-Sep-96

8-Jul-97

 

Jordan

26-Sep-96

25-Aug-98

 

Kazakhstan

30-Sep-96

14-May-02

 

Kenya

14-Nov-96

30-Nov-00

 

Kiribati

7-Sep-00

7-Sep-00

 

Kuwait

24-Sep-96

6-May-03

 

Kyrgyzstan

8-Oct-96

2-Oct-03

 

Lao People's Dem. Republic

30-Jul-97

5-Oct-00

 

Latvia

24-Sep-96

20-Nov-01

 

Lebanon

 

 

 

Lesotho

30-Sep-96

14-Sep-99

 

Liberia

1-Oct-96

 

 

Libyan Arab Jamahiriya

13-Nov-01

 06 Jan 2004

 

Liechtenstein

27-Sep-96

 21 Sept 2004

 

Lithuania

7-Oct-96

7-Feb-00

 

Luxembourg

24-Sep-96

26-May-99

 

Madagascar

9-Oct-96

 

 

Malawi

9-Oct-96

 

 

Malaysia

23-Jul-98

 

 

Maldives

1-Oct-97

7-Sep-00

 

Mali

18-Feb-97

4-Aug-99

 

Malta

24-Sep-96

23-Jul-01

 

Marshall Islands

24-Sep-96

 

 

Mauritania

24-Sep-96

 30 Apr 2003

 

Mauritius

 

 

***

Mexico

24-Sep-96

5-Oct-99

 

Micronesia, Fed. States of

24-Sep-96

25-Jul-97

 

Monaco

1-Oct-96

18-Dec-98

 

Mongolia

1-Oct-96

8-Aug-97

 

Morocco

24-Sep-96

17-Apr-00

 

Mozambique

26-Sep-96

 

 

Myanmar

25-Nov-96

 

 

Namibia

24-Sep-96

29-Jun-01

 

Nauru

8-Sep-00

12-Nov-01

 

Nepal

8-Oct-96

 

***

Netherlands

24-Sep-96

23-Mar-99

 

New Zealand

27-Sep-96

19-Mar-99

 

Nicaragua

24-Sep-96

5-Dec-00

 

Niger

3-Oct-96

9-Sep-02

 

Nigeria

8-Sep-00

27-Sep-01

 

Niue

 

 

***

Norway

24-Sep-96

15-Jul-99

 

Oman

23-Sep-99

13-Jun-03

*

Pakistan

 

 

 

Palau

 12 Aug 2003

 

 

Panama

24-Sep-96

23-Mar-99

 

Papua New Guinea

25-Sep-96

 

 

Paraguay

25-Sep-96

4-Oct-01

***

Peru

25-Sep-96

12-Nov-97

 

Philippines

24-Sep-96

23-Feb-01

***

Poland

24-Sep-96

25-May-99

 

Portugal

24-Sep-96

26-Jun-00

 

Qatar

24-Sep-96

3-Mar-97

***

Republic of Korea

24-Sep-96

24-Sep-99

 

Republic of Moldova

24-Sep-97

 

***

Romania

24-Sep-96

5-Oct-99

***

Russian Federation

24-Sep-96

30-Jun-00

 

Rwanda

 30 Nov 2004

30-Nov-04

 

Saint Kitts & Nevis

 23 Mar 2004

 

 

Saint Lucia

4-Oct-96

5-Apr-01

 

Saint Vincent & the Grenadin.

 

 

 

Samoa

9-Oct-96

27-Sep-02

 

San Marino

7-Oct-96

12-Mar-02

 

Sao Tome & Principe

26-Sep-96

 

 

Saudi Arabia

 

 

 

Senegal

26-Sep-96

9-Jun-99

 

Serbia & Montenegro

8-Jun-01

 19 May 2004

 

Seychelles

24-Sep-96

 13 Apr 2004

 

Sierra Leone

8-Sep-00

17-Sep-01

 

Singapore

14-Jan-99

10-Nov-01

***

Slovakia

30-Sep-96

3-Mar-98

 

Slovenia

24-Sep-96

31-Aug-99

 

Solomon Islands

3-Oct-96

 

 

Somalia

 

 

***

South Africa

24-Sep-96

30-Mar-99

***

Spain

24-Sep-96

31-Jul-98

 

Sri Lanka

24-Oct-96

 

 

Sudan

 10 Jun 2004

10-Jun-04

 

Suriname

14-Jan-97

 

 

Swaziland

24-Sep-96

 

***

Sweden

24-Sep-96

2-Dec-98

***

Switzerland

24-Sep-96

1-Oct-99

 

Syrian Arab Republic

 

 

 

Tajikistan

7-Oct-96

10-Jun-98

 

Thailand

12-Nov-96

 

 

The FYR of Macedonia

29-Oct-98

14-Mar-00

 

Togo

2-Oct-96

 02 Jul 2004

 

Tonga

 

 

 

Trinidad & Tobago

 

 

 

Tunisia

16-Oct-96

 23 Sept 2004

***

Turkey

24-Sep-96

16-Feb-00

 

Turkmenistan

24-Sep-96

20-Feb-98

 

Tuvalu

 

 

 

Uganda

7-Nov-96

14-Mar-01

***

Ukraine

27-Sep-96

23-Feb-01

 

United Arab Emirates

25-Sep-96

18-Sep-00

***

United Kingdom

24-Sep-96

6-Apr-98

 

United Republic of Tanzania

 30 Sept 2004

 30 Sept 2004

**

United States of America

24-Sep-96

 

 

Uruguay

24-Sep-96

21-Sep-01

 

Uzbekistan

3-Oct-96

29-May-97

 

Vanuatu

24-Sep-96

 

 

Venezuela

3-Oct-96

13-May-02

**

Viet Nam

24-Sep-96

 

 

Yemen

30-Sep-96

 

 

Zambia

3-Dec-96

 

 

Zimbabwe

13-Oct-99

 

 

TOTAL 193, of which:

174

120

http://disarmament2.un.org/TreatyStatus.nsf"}

Stars indicate the 44 states parties of the 1996 Committee on Disarmament with nuclear power plants or research reactors, whose ratifications are required for the treaty to enter into force. As of 31 December2004, out of the 44 required parties:
*** = 33 had ratified;
** = 8 had signed but not ratified: China, Colombia, Egypt, Indonesia, Iran,
Israel, United States, and Vietnam.
* = 3 had neither signed nor ratified: India, Pakistan, and North Korea.

 


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