BEIJING, Aug.25 -- “China urges relevant countries to fulfill their nuclear non-proliferation obligations, and revoke their decision on nuclear-powered submarine cooperation,” said Senior Colonel Tan Kefei, a spokesperson for China’s Ministry of National Defense, at a regular press conference on Thursday.
The spokesperson made the remarks when being asked to expound China's position on the AUKUS (a security partnership among Australia, the United Kingdom and the United States) cooperation on nuclear-powered submarines.
“China has repeatedly stressed that the AUKUS nuclear submarine cooperation poses a serious risk of nuclear proliferation, impacts the international nuclear non-proliferation regime, intensifies arms races, and undermines regional peace and stability,” said Tan.
He pointed out that the US and the UK, as depositors of the NPT and countries possessing nuclear weapons, decided to transfer nuclear submarine power reactors and weapons-grade highly enriched uranium to non-nuclear-weapon states, it is a blatant violation of the purpose of the NPT.
China calls on the international community to jointly defend the NPT-based international nuclear non-proliferation regime to maintain international peace and security, Tan said.
When it comes to Japan and relevant countries' voices to seek “nuclear sharing” with the US in the Asia-Pacific region, Tan stressed that relevant countries should earnestly fulfill their obligations under the NPT and their own commitments, and stop clamoring for “nuclear sharing” argument or other forms of nuclear deterrence arrangements.
He pointed out that any attempt to replicate the “nuclear sharing” model in the Asia-Pacific region is bound to seriously damage the regional strategic balance and stability, and will surely be firmly opposed and countered by countries in the region.