Executive Secretary visits China and Japan

The Executive Secretary of the CTBTO Preparatory Commission, Mr Wolfgang Hoffmann, concluded a week-long mission to China and Japan on 10 July 2003. The Executive Secretary held meetings with, inter alia, the Japanese Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Japanese Meteorological Agency, and with the Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Foreign Affairs Committee of the National People's Congress. Mr Hoffmann also spoke at the opening of the Ninth On-Site Inspection Workshop in Hiroshima, and laid flowers at the Hiroshima Peace Memorial.

In Japan, the Executive Secretary met with the Foreign Minister, Ms Yoriko Kawaguchi, who informed him that she had urged all Foreign Ministers concerned to move towards early signature and ratification of the Treaty whenever she had bilateral meetings.

Mr Hoffmann also met with the Mayor of Hiroshima, Dr Tadatoshi Akiba, to discuss various issues, especially nuclear disarmament and the nuclear test ban. The importance of continued international efforts to check nuclear proliferation, to ban comprehensively all nuclear explosions and to achieve nuclear disarmament was reaffirmed.

During his mission to China, the Executive Secretary met with the Foreign Minister, Mr Li Zhaoxing. Issues concerning the CTBT and the activities of the Preparatory Commission were discussed. The Foreign Minister expressed China's support for the CTBT.

The Executive Secretary also met with high officials from the Ministry of Defence and the National People's Congress. He visited Beijing Radionuclide Station and made a presentation on the CTBT to a group of scientists and experts from relevant governmental and non-governmental institutions.