General Assembly Security Council


Mr. President, 
Thank you for convening this Open Debate on an issue that is of great concern to all of us.  We thank the briefers for their comprehensive briefings on the subject.
Mr. President,
Preventing access to Weapons of Mass Destruction and their means of delivery to non state actors systems is a continuing concern, especially as terrorist groups and non-state actors strike ever deeper roots and exploit different avenues to strike terror. 
Terror networks and non-State actors, by themselves, do not have any capacity or access to advanced and sensitive technologies and materials. However, instances of proliferation of WMDs, however, are not unknown to all of us. The possibility of such collusion remains a real cause for concern. 
This grave threat can only be contained through effective and sustained international cooperation and coordination and monitoring.
Mr. President,
As a country with advanced nuclear technologies, India is fully conscious of the responsibilities that come with the possession of such technologies. India has been and remains fully committed to strengthening national and global non proliferation efforts. 
India is a party to all the 13 universal instruments accepted as benchmarks for a State's commitments to combat international terrorism.  
The International Atomic Energy Agency plays a central role in promoting nuclear security efforts. India participated at the Ministerial level in the International Conferences on Nuclear Security organized by the IAEA in 2013 & 2016.
Our Prime Minister has participated in all the four Nuclear Security Summits held since 2010. These summits have raised global awareness and generated whole-of-government responses to combat nuclear terrorism.  At the 2016 Washington Summit, India was part of the Joint Statement on Sustaining Action to Strengthen Global Nuclear Security Architecture. India participates actively in the Nuclear Security Contact Group. 
India has contributed to the goals and objectives of the Chemical Weapons Convention (CWC), as an original State Party, and as a member of the Executive Council of the OPCW since its inception. India also participates actively in the inter-sessional process on the Biological & Toxin Weapons Convention (BTWC) that needs to be strengthened including through a legally-binding protocol in light of technology trends and the threat of bio-terrorism. 
Since 2002, India has tabled a Resolution on 'Measures to prevent terrorists from gaining access to WMD' which has been adopted by consensus every year, most recently in 2016 as Resolution 71/38, co-sponsored by more than 70 Member States. The resolution offers a consensus platform to strengthen international dialogue and cooperation.
Mr. President,
Export controls remain the first line of defence in combating WMD proliferation by non-state actors. India is committed to maintaining effective national export controls consistent with the highest international standards and has harmonized its legislative and regulatory framework with the control lists, guidelines and best practices of the Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG), Missile Technology Control Regime (MTCR), Wassenaar Arrangement (WA) and Australia Group (AG). 
India's admission to MTCR on 27 June 2016 is a recognition of India's non-proliferation record and its ability to contribute to global non-proliferation efforts. India also joined the Hague Code of Conduct against Ballistic Missile Proliferation last year.  
Mr. President,
We appreciate the efforts of the 1540 Committee and the UNODA in preventing non-state actor access to WMD. The 1540 Committee is an important component making significant collective contribution to the global security. It is incumbent on all States to play and equal and active role and fulfill their obligations, both in letter and spirit. India continues to collaborate with the 1540 Committee to organise the capacity building and awareness raising events about WMD proliferation. India is currently planning to host an international workshop in cooperation with UNODA and the 1540 Committee in New Delhi. 
We have taken note of the requests for assistance put forward by countries to the 1540 Committee and remain ready to provide technical assistance and training to any interested member state across activities ranging from drafting of legislation for implementing export controls/strategic trade controls to maintenance and review of export control lists. Further details on technical expertise offered by India can be accessed through our latest report submitted to the 1540 Committee this month. 
India's Global Centre for Nuclear Energy Partnership (GCNEP) has been steadily strengthening its portfolio of programmes and activities with a particular focus on nuclear security and has conducted more than 30 international and regional programmes, involving more than 300 participants from around 30 countries. The course content has included important and emerging nuclear security topics such as insider threat, vulnerability assessment, transportation security, cyber security, detection and prevention and response to radiological threats.
In addition to capacity building and training, we must endeavour to close gaps in the international legal architecture to combat terrorism and non-state actor access to WMD and related material. An early conclusion of negotiations on the draft Comprehensive Convention on International Terrorism will be helpful. We support universal adherence to and full implementation of the International Convention for the Suppression of Acts of Nuclear Terrorism and the Convention on the Physical Protection of Nuclear Material as well as its 2005 Amendment.
As part of its efforts to strengthen global nuclear security architecture to stop the risk of nuclear and other radioactive substances from falling into the hands of terrorist groups and non-state actors, in February this year, India hosted the 2017 Global Initiative to Combat Nuclear Terrorism (GICNT) Implementation and Assessment Group (IAG) meeting that was attended by more than 150 delegates from over 40 GICNT partner countries as well as the IAEA, Interpol, EU and UNODC. The GICNT provides an effective international platform for consolidating and disseminating the technical expertise and best practices to respond to terrorist acts. 
Synergy will be key to the success of our efforts. As the clandestine proliferation networks, which have been unmasked, have shown, non-state actors can exploit weak links in global supply chains and export controls and undermine international security. All States must therefore assume their responsibility to combat proliferation of WMD by non-state actors. 
Efforts to eliminate all weapons of mass destruction through global, non-discriminatory and verifiable disarmament treaties such as the CWC must also be taken to their logical conclusion.
Mr. President,
For its part, India remains committed to strict controls on export of WMD and WMD-delivery related materials and technologies consistent with the highest international standards, and the measures taken in this regard, as highlighted in India's latest national report to the 1540 Committee, thereby contributing to the global effort to prevent the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction by non-State actors.
Prevention remains our best strategy against the threat of WMD falling into the hands of non-state actors. The enemies of humanity will not hesitate to use WMD if they are able to. The international community must remain vigilant, strengthen cooperation, build capacity and encourage full assumption of national responsibility by States in accordance with their international obligations. 
Thank you.