Statement by Ambassador Pankaj Sharma,
Permanent Representative of India
to the Conference on Disarmament during
the Plenary meeting of the Conference on Disarmament
with a substantive focus on Agenda Item 7: Transparency
in Armaments, held on July 27, 2021
At the outset, India has the pleasure of welcoming Ambassador Adejola of Nigeria and Ambassador Filipenko of Ukraine to the CD family and would like to assure them of our full support and cooperation, during their tenure here in Geneva. I would also like to acknowledge the presence of Her Excellency Dr. Tatiana Valovaya, Secretary General of the Conference, among us.
2. We learnt a few days ago that Ambassador Mya Than, one of the former Permanent Representatives of Myanmar to the CD passed away. India would like to pay tribute to Ambassador Than, who distinguished himself as an able representative of his country in the CD and greatly contributed to our work in this Body. India also joins the colleagues who spoke before me in expressing our sincere condolences on the loss of lives due to the recent natural disasters.
3. Today’s discussion in the Conference is on an important agenda item related to“Transparency in Armaments”.
4. India believes that transparency is a necessary tool for confidence building and enhancing mutual trust among States. In order to secure the widest possible participation of States and contribute effectively to the process of confidence building, measures to promote transparency in armaments should be mutually agreed upon by all States.
5. Measures to enhance transparency in armaments must also respect the inherent right of States to self-defense as enshrined in the Charter of the United Nations. Such measures cannot restrict or prejudice the legitimate right of States to acquire or produce arms for self-defense and in pursuit of their national security interests.
6. Regarding transparency related to the Weapons of Mass Destruction, the BWC and the CWC provide the essential frameworks for governing biological and chemical weapons respectively. As to transparency with respect to nuclear weapons, India believes that it cannot be a standalone factor, but should form part of an agreed multilateral framework covering all states possessing nuclear weapons, consistent with their national security interests.
7. With respect to conventional weapons, India has supported the UN Register on Conventional Arms and has regularly submitted national reports to the Register. India has participated actively in the three-yearly reviews of the Register and supports efforts for further improving the Register along with efforts towards universalizing participation. India has also supported the resolution on objective information on military matters, including transparency of military expenditure. India also contributed to the work of the GGE on the Standardized Instrument for Reporting Military Expenditures held in 2011. India has regularly submitted its national reports to the UN Programme of Action on Small Arms and Light Weapons as well as the CCW and its Protocols. India is also a member of the Wassenaar Arrangement since 2017.
8. India looks forward to engaging with fellow Member States on this important aspect of our work. Thank you,Madam President.