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Chatham Island Leads In Nuclear Disarmament

Hon Matt Robson
Minister of Corrections, Minister for Courts
Minister for Disarmament and Arms Control
Associate Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade

News Advisory

3rd March 2000 Immediate release

Chatham Island Leads The Way in Nuclear Disarmament

Minister of Disarmament, Matt Robson and Minister of health and MP for Rongotai Annette King will open the Chatham Islands nuclear test monitoring station on Monday.

The CTBT Radionuclide Station is a state-of-the-art monitoring station designed to pick up any nuclear testing in this region.

"It's a way of deterring the cheats. The Comprehensive Nuclear Test-Ban Treaty (CTBT) bans all nuclear explosions in all environments – underwater, underground and in the atmosphere. If there is any sign of a test, the Chatham Islands will pick it up." Matt Robson says.

"There can be no doubt of the importance of these stations in the push to end nuclear testing and for global health," Annette King says.

New Zealand is a signatory to the CTBT Treaty. Another station will also be set up in Kaitaia. Further stations are planned in other parts of New Zealand.

"At a time when disarmament talks have reached a dangerous stalemate overseas, it is more urgent than that we in New Zealand do all we can to push for the elimination of nuclear weapons in total," said Matt Robson.

Matt Robson will travel to the Conference on Disarmament in Geneva this month. He will also visit the CTBT head office in Vienna where data from the Chatham's station will be collected.

DATE: 6th March
TIME: 4pm
VENUE: Chatham Islands
Further comment:
Josie Harbutt, press sec. 025 5888 60 (04) 470 6676, or John Harvey 4719305 025 461675

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