America, UK, France, China, and Russia Pledge to Steer Clear of Nuclear Conflict

The nuclear-armed countries of the US, the United Kingdom, France, China, and Russia pledged to avert nuclear war, as well as the spread of such weaponry and a weapons race.

The five permanent member states of the United Nations Security Council released a rare united declaration on Monday, asserting that nuclear conflict cannot be won and should never be waged.

A World Free of Atomic Warheads

According to the declaration, the nations agree nuclear arms should be used defensively and as a deterrent against aggression and conflict.

They emphasize their intention to collaborate with all governments to create a security climate more favorable to advancing denuclearization, with the ultimate aim of a world free of atomic warheads and unrivaled security for everyone.

They plan to pursue bilateral and multilateral diplomatic measures to avoid military conflicts and promote security and consistency. They also seek to build confidence and competence, while avoiding a military conflict that would profit no one and risk everybody.

The announcement was made a day before the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons Treaty’s 91 parties were scheduled to convene in New York to evaluate the paper. However, the meeting was rescheduled last month, due to COVID-19-related difficulties.

Russia, Ukraine, and China’s Stance

The declaration comes as fears rise that Russia will attack Ukraine again; a Moscow military deployment has been reported along their shared border. Meanwhile, the rivalry between Beijing and Washington grows as the latter wants to increase its influence.

President Biden warned Vladimir Putin there will be repercussions if Russian troops invade Kyiv; he also guaranteed Ukrainian President Zelensky over the phone on Sunday that the US and its partners will respond forcefully if this occurs.

Without elaborating on the issue, Zakharova said they believe the statement would help lower geopolitical tensions and discourage an arms race; it will also add to confidence-building and the establishment of foundations for future management of attack and defense weapons.

In China, Vice Foreign Minister Ma Zhaoxu told journalists this was the first time the presidents of the five nations released such a declaration; it demonstrated Beijing’s determination to avoid nuclear war and the risk of nuclear confrontation.

According to him, the declaration also enables the five permanent member nations of the United Nations Security Council to improve confidence and substitute great-power rivalry with coordinated collaboration.

The five nations should use the joint declaration as a springboard to foster mutual trust, promote collaboration, and take an important role in creating a world of permanent peace and global security.

Regarding the postponement of the 10th evaluation conference on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons Treaty, Gustavo Zlauvinen, the conference’s president-appoint, said he will ask that it be held from August 1 to 26.

He aims to hold unofficial discussions with all sides in the upcoming weeks.