Germany: Ratification of Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT)
Government of the United States of America
2 Mai 1975
The signature of the Treaty by the Ambassador of the Federal Republic of Germany was prefaced by the following:
“With reference to the note handed by the Government of the Federal Republic of Germany to the Government of the United States of America in its capacity as depositary government.”
After signing the Treaty, the Ambassador handed the Secretary of State a note from the Government of the Federal Republic of Germany, as well as a statement by that Government. Translations of the note and statement, provided by the Government of the Federal Republic of Germany, read as follows:
“The Government of the Federal Republic of Germany presents its compliments to the Government of the United States of America and, on the occasion and in formal connection with its signing today of the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons, has the honour to expound its understanding of the basis of that Treaty.
“I. The Federal Government understands that
-- the provisions of the Treaty shall be interpreted and applied in relation to the Federal Republic of Germany in the same way as in relation to the other Parties to the Treaty;
-- the security of the Federal Republic of Germany and its allies shall continue to be ensured by NATO or an equivalent security system;
-- Resolution No. 255 adopted by the United Nations Security Council, as well as the Declaration of Intent of the United States, the Soviet Union and Great Britain upon which that Resolution is based, shall also apply without any restriction to the Federal Republic of Germany;
-- the Treaty shall not hamper the unification of the European States;
-- the Parties to the Treaty will commence without delay the negotiations on disarmament envisaged under the Treaty, especially with regard to nuclear weapons.
“II. The Federal Government declares that
-- signature of this Treaty does not imply recognition of the GDR under international law;
-- therefore, no relations under international law with the GDR shall arise out of this Treaty for the Federal Republic of Germany.
“III. With respect to the peaceful use of nuclear energy and to the verification agreement to be concluded with the IAEA, the Federal Government starts from the following assumptions:
(a) Limitation of the purpose of the Treaty
It is the purpose of the Treaty to prevent the present non-nuclear-weapon States from manufacturing or otherwise acquiring nuclear weapons or other nuclear explosive devices. The provisions of the Treaty are therefore solely designed to attain this objective. In no case shall they lead to restricting the use of nuclear energy for other purposes by non-nuclear-weapon States.
(b) Research and Development
Freedom of research and development is essential in the advancement of the peaceful uses of nuclear energy, and to the Federal Republic of Germany it is beyond all doubt that the Treaty may never be interpreted or applied in such a way as to hamper or inhibit research and development in this sphere.
The Federal Government has taken note of the statement made by the US Permanent Representative to the United Nations on 15 May 1968, and, in particular, of the following remarks:
‘. . . there is no basis for any concern that this Treaty would impose inhibitions or restrictions on the opportunity for non-nuclear-weapon states to develop their capabilities in nuclear science and technology;’
‘This Treaty does not ask any country to accept a status of technological dependency or to be deprived of developments in nuclear research;’
‘The whole field of nuclear science associated with electric power production . . . . . . will become more accessible under the Treaty, to all who seek to exploit it. This includes not only the present generation of nuclear power reactors, but also that advanced technology, which is still developing of fast breeder power reactors, which, in producing energy, also produce more fissionable material than they consume;’
‘Many nations are now engaged in research in an even more advanced field of science, that of controlled thermonuclear fusion. The future developments of this science and technology may well lead to the nuclear reactor of the future, in which the fission process of uranium or plutonium is replaced by the fusion reactions of hydrogen isotopes as the source of energy. Controlled thermonuclear fusion technology will not be affected by the Treaty . . .’
(c) Onus of proof
In connection with paragraph 3 of Article III and with Article IV of the Treaty no nuclear activities in the fields of research, development, manufacture or use for peaceful purposes are prohibited nor can the transfer of information, materials and equipment be denied to non-nuclear-weapon States merely on the basis of allegations that such activities or transfers could be used for the manufacture of nuclear weapons or other nuclear explosive devices.
(d) Exchange of Information
Article IV requires those Parties to the Treaty in a position to do so to co-operate in contributing to the further development of the applications of nuclear energy for peaceful purposes. The Federal Government therefore expects that any measures restricting the unhampered flow of scientific and technological information will be re-examined with a view to facilitating the fullest possible exchange of scientific and technological information for peaceful purposes.
(e) Other nuclear explosive devices
At the present stage of technology nuclear explosive devices are those designed to release in microseconds in an uncontrollable manner a large amount of nuclear energy accompanied by shock waves, i.e. devices that can be used as nuclear weapons.
At the same time, the Federal Government holds the view that the Non-Proliferation Treaty must not hamper progress in the field of developing and applying the technology of using nuclear explosives for peaceful purposes.
(f) Safeguards and Verification Agreements
There is no incompatibility between the aims of the Non-Proliferation Treaty and those of the Treaty establishing EURATOM. As to the safeguards provided for in its Article III, the Non-Proliferation Treaty limits itself to referring to agreements to be concluded with the IAEA, the contents of which have therefore not yet been laid down.
The safeguards agreements with the IAEA, as described in paragraphs 1 and 4 of Article III, can be concluded by Parties to the Treaty not only ‘individually’ but also ‘together with other States’. States being members of an organization the work of which is related to that of the IAEA comply with their obligation to conclude the agreement by the organization concerned concluding it with the IAEA, as also provided in Article XVI of the Statute of the IAEA and in the Agency’s safeguards system.
The obligation of a non-nuclear-weapon State Party to the Treaty under paragraph 1 of Article III to accept safeguards outside its own territory prevails only if such Party has dominant and effective control over a nuclear facility.
In order to avoid incompatibility between the implementation of the Non-Proliferation Treaty and compliance with the provisions of the Treaty establishing EURATOM, the verification procedures must be so defined that the rights and obligations of member states and the Community remain unaffected, in accordance with the opinion rendered by the Commission under Article 103 of the Treaty establishing EURATOM.
To this end, the Commission of the European Communities will have to enter into negotiations with the IAEA.
The Government of the Federal Republic of Germany intends to postpone the ratification procedure of the Non-Proliferation Treaty until negotiations between the Commission and the IAEA have led to agreement.
“IV. The Government of the Federal Republic of Germany reaffirms the attached Statement made by it on signing the Non-Proliferation Treaty.
“Statement by the Government of the Federal Republic of Germany on signing the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons
“The Government of the Federal Republic of Germany
“(1) welcomes the fact that the principle of non-proliferation of nuclear weapons has now been consolidated world-wide by treaty and points out that the Federal Republic of Germany has as early as October 1954, in the Brussels Treaty, renounced the manufacture of nuclear, biological and chemical weapons and accepted relevant controls;
“(2) reaffirms its expectation that the Treaty will be a milestone on the way towards disarmament, international détente, and peace, and that it will render an important contribution towards the creation of an international community based on the security of independent nations and on the progress of mankind;
“(3) understands that the provisions of the Treaty shall be interpreted and applied in relation to the Federal Republic of Germany in the same way as in relation to the other Parties to the Treaty;
“(4) understands that the security of the Federal Republic of Germany shall continue to be ensured by NATO; the Federal Republic of Germany for its part shall remain unrestrictedly committed to the collective security arrangements of NATO;
“(5) understands that Resolution No. 255 adopted by the United Nations Security Council, as well as Declarations of Intent of the United States, Great Britain and the Soviet Union upon which that Resolution is based, shall also apply without any restriction to the Federal Republic of Germany;
“(6) states that the principles contained in the Preamble to the Treaty, and the principles of international law laid down in Article 2 of the United Nations Charter which preclude any threat or use of force directed against the territorial integrity or the political independence of a State, are the indispensable prerequisite to the Treaty itself and shall apply without any restriction also in relation to the Federal Republic of Germany;
“(7) signs the Treaty in the expectation that it will encourage further agreements on the prohibition of the use and threat of force, which will serve to stabilize peace in Europe;
“(8) states that the Federal Republic of Germany, in a situation in which it considers its supreme interests in jeopardy, will remain free by invoking the principle of international law laid down in Article 51 of the United Nations Charter to take the measures required to safeguard these interests;
“(9) signs the Treaty convinced that it will not hamper European unification;
“(10) regards the Treaty not as an end but rather a starting point for the negotiations, provided for in the Treaty itself as its natural supplement and to ensure its effective implementation, concerning disarmament, the peaceful uses of nuclear energy, and the benefits arising for the peaceful applications of nuclear energy;
“(11) stresses that the research, development and use of nuclear energy for peaceful purposes and the international or multinational co-operation in this field must not only not be hampered but should even be furthered by the Treaty, especially as regards non-nuclear-weapon States;
“(12) notes that no incompatibility exists between the aims of the Non-Proliferation Treaty and those of the Treaty establishing EURATOM;
“(13) understands that the agreements between the IAEA and EURATOM, as described in Article III of the Non-Proliferation Treaty, shall be concluded on the basis of the principle of verification, and that verification shall take place in a way that does not affect the tasks of the European Atomic Energy Community in the political, scientific, economic and technical fields;
“(14) insists that, in accordance with the letter and the spirit of the Treaty, the safeguards shall only be applied to source and special fissionable material and in conformity with the principle of safeguarding effectively the flow of source and special fissionable materials at certain strategic points. It understands that the words ‘source material’ and ‘special fissionable material’ used in the Treaty shall have – subject to amendments expressly accepted by the Federal Republic of Germany – the meaning laid down in the present wording of Article IX of the Statute of the IAEA;
“(15) understands that each Party to the Treaty shall decide for itself which ‘equipment or material’ shall fall under the export provision of paragraph 2 of Article III. In so doing the Federal Republic of Germany will accept only those interpretations and definitions of the terms ‘equipment or material’ which it has expressly approved;
“(16) reaffirms the necessity of settling the question of the costs of safeguards in a way that does not place unfair burdens on non-nuclear-weapon States;
“(17) declares that the Federal Republic of Germany does not intend to ratify the Non-Proliferation Treaty before an agreement in accordance with Article III of that Treaty has been concluded between EURATOM and the IAEA which both in form and substance meets the requirements of paragraphs 13, 14, 15 and 16 of this Statement and compatibility with the Treaty instituting the European Atomic Energy Community has been established;
“(18) stresses the vital importance it attaches, with a view to ensuring equal opportunities in the economic and scientific fields, to the fulfilment of the assurance given by the United States and Great Britain concerning the application of safeguards to their peaceful nuclear facilities, and hopes that other nuclear-weapon States as well will give similar assurances;
“(19) reaffirms its view that, until the conclusion of the agreement between the IAEA and EURATOM, the supply contracts concluded between EURATOM and the Parties to the Non-Proliferation Treaty shall remain in force, and that, after the entry into force of the Non-Proliferation Treaty, supply contracts should, in the interest of an unhampered exchange of information, equipment and materials for peaceful purposes, be freed from any additional political or administrative restrictions.
“The Government of the Federal Republic of Germany signs today in Washington, London and Moscow, the capitals of the three Depositary Governments, the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons.
“On this same day, the Government of the Federal Republic of Germany hands to the Depositary Governments – informing simultaneously the Governments of all States with which the Federal Republic of Germany maintains diplomatic relations – the text of a Note bringing the above Statement to the attention of these Governments. The Note also contains the known German interpretation of the Non-Proliferation Treaty which are designed to preserve the sphere of peaceful activities and to ensure the conclusion of the verification agreement between the IAEA and EURATOM in accordance with Article III of the Non-Proliferation Treaty.”
The instrument of ratification of the Treaty by the Federal Republic of Germany was accompanied by a declaration and a statement contained in notes from the Ambassador of the Federal Republic of Germany, dated May 2, 1975, which read as follows:
“I have the honor to make the following declaration on behalf of the Government of the Federal Republic of Germany:
“In connection with the deposit today of the instruments of ratification of the Federal Republic of Germany to the Treaty of 1 July 1968 on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons, the Government of the Federal Republic of Germany sets out below in summary form the understanding on which the Federal Republic of Germany becomes a Party to the Treaty and on which it commented in its Note and in its Statement of 28 November 1969 on the occasion of signing the Treaty.
“The Government of the Federal Republic of Germany
“1. reaffirms its expectation that the Treaty will be a milestone on the way towards disarmament, international détente, and peace, and that in particular the nuclear-weapon States will intensify their efforts in accordance with the undertaking and aims embodied in Article VI of the Treaty;
“2. understands that the security of the Federal Republic of Germany continues to be ensured by NATO; the Federal Republic of Germany will for its part remain committed to the collective security arrangements of NATO;
“3. states that no provision of the Treaty may be interpreted in such a way as to hamper the further development of European unification, especially the creation of a European Union with appropriate competences;
“4. understands that research, development and use of nuclear energy for peaceful purposes as well as international and multinational co-operation in this field, must not be prejudiced by the Treaty;
“5. understands that the application of the Treaty, including the implementation of safeguards, will not lead to discrimination of the nuclear industry of the Federal Republic of Germany in international competition;
“6. stresses once again in this connection the vital importance it attaches to the undertaking given by the Government of the United States and by the Government of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland concerning the application of safeguards to their peaceful nuclear facilities, and hopes that other nuclear-weapon States will assume similar obligations.
“The Government of the Federal Republic of Germany requests the Government of the United States of America to communicate the text of this declaration to all signatory and acceding States in accordance with paragraph 5 of Article IX of the Treaty.
“Accept, Excellency, the assurances of my highest consideration.”
“In connection with the deposit today of the instrument of ratification to the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons, I have the honor to state on behalf of the Federal Republic of Germany that with effect from the day on which the Treaty enters into force for the Federal Republic of Germany it will also apply to Berlin (West) without affecting Allied rights and responsibilities, including those relating to demilitarization.
“Accept, Excellency, the assurances of my highest consideration.”
Ratification on deposit with London — 2 Mai 1975