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Xu Guangyu:Nuclear Transparency
Time:2013-05-11 19:07         Author:Xu Guangyu         Source:军控协会,

 





Abstract
: The concept of nuclear transparency has been an important topic of international nuclear arms control. Each nuclear power has its own understanding on the definition of nuclear transparency due to its unique military culture, strategic thinking, strategic capability, strategic environment, and the different level of nuclear disarmament it belongs to. These result in different nuclear transparent mode and difference between transparent degrees. Only by understanding these differences from an objective and impartial aspect, finding a reasonable way to compensate them, and promoting nuclear transparency actively according to the target of different stages, can we realize the prospect of global nuclear mutual trust and nuclear safety.
Key words: nuclear transparency; nuclear transparent degree; nuclear transparent mode
Author: China Arms Control and Disarmament Association (CACDA)
 
Ⅰ. Definition of Nuclear Transparency
According to the international arms control agreements, military transparency is identified as one of the important measures to build up international mutual trust. The nuclear transparency, which has a special status, is an important part of military transparency. Generally speaking, nuclear transparency means that a nation opens its military and civilian use of nuclear energy to the international community. Due to the huge damage of military nuclear energy and the supranational influence of civilian nuclear energy, nuclear transparency has been highly concerned.
Nuclear transparency can be divided into military nuclear transparency and civilian nuclear transparency on the basis of the area it involves.
. Civilian nuclear transparency
Till now, the international community has developed different transparency rules and requirements in both military and civilian nuclear energy. These two areas have strong correlations. As we all know, many civilian nuclear reactors can produce 239Pu which can be used to manufacture nuclear weapons. For example, Japanese nuclear reactors have produced 46 tones 239Pu by 2010. Although 36 tones of them have been stored in France and England, it still has 10 tones existing domestically. This is why there are some Japanese people who want to change the existing nuclear policy and boost to manufacture nuclear weapon in 180 days.
In the civilian nuclear field, several serious accidents had happened so far. The influence of these accidents is more harmful beyond its own territory. The Chernobyl Accident and Fukushima Accident are the most typical examples. Complying with the rules of nuclear transparency and releasing accident information to the relevant region and the whole world has been proved the most effective way to control and reduce the damage of nuclear accident. In addition, developing internationally accepted rules by UN agencies, maintaining necessary openness and strict control procedures on the planning, construction and operation of nuclear reactors, and the production, concentration, trading, transportation, storage and post-processing of nuclear fissile materials, have also been considered as essential requirements of nuclear transparency to promote global nuclear safety.
Although there are fewer disagreements between nations in the field of civilian nuclear openness, it is still the focus of attention in international nuclear arms control and nuclear disarmament because of the strong relationship between civilian nuclear transparency and military nuclear transparency. If this issue can not be handled properly, it will also affect the peace and stability of international relations. Iran nuclear issue is such a good example. (军控协会)

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