CTBTO Executive Secretary to Visit the ROK

1. Lassina Zerbo, Executive Secretary of the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty Organization (CTBTO), will visit the Republic of Korea from August 10 through 13. His schedule in the country will include a meeting with Foreign Minister Yun Byung-se and visits to the Korean Seismic Research Station, the Korea National Diplomatic Academy and the inter-Korean demilitarized zone (DMZ).

2. In their meeting, Foreign Minister Yun and Executive Secretary Zerbo, who will be on his first visit to the ROK since his taking up the current post in August 2013, will discuss the North Korean nuclear issue; how the CTBTO would respond should North Korea conduct an additional nuclear test; and ways forward for the ROK and the CTBTO to work together.

3. During his visit, Executive Secretary Zerbo is expected to send a message to North Korea to stop further nuclear tests, taking into account the fact that it has conducted three nuclear tests in violation of international norms under the CTBT and relevant UN Security Council resolutions.

4. The CTBT is an international treaty that prohibits all types of nuclear tests at all places, including the atmosphere, the outer space, under-water and under-ground. The CTBTO is the organization that oversees the implementation of the treaty.

◦ The ROK ratified the CTBT on September 24, 1999. As of August 2014, 183 states have signed the CTBT, with 162 of them ratifying it. Eight of the 44 states listed in Annex 2 of the treaty — states that participated in the CTBT’s negotiations between 1994 and 1996 and possessed nuclear power reactors or research reactors at that time – have yet to ratify the treaty. The treaty will enter into force after the remaining eight states do so.

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