1. Ambassador of the Republic of Korea to the Republic of Austria and Permanent Representative of the ROK to the International Organizations in Vienna Shin Dong-ik was elected as Chair of the Preparatory Commission for the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test Ban Treaty Organization (CTBTO PrepCom) for the year 2019 by consensus among 184 signatories on November 8 at its 51st session, underway in Vienna, Austria.
※ The Preparatory Commission for the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test Ban Treaty Organization was initially created to prepare for the official launch of an organization in charge of the CTBT, but has functioned as a de-facto decision-making body, as it has become difficult to expect the early entry into force of the CTBT.
2. During his tenure in 2019 (January 1-December 31), the Chair of the CTBTO PrepCom, in cooperation with the CTBTO’s Provisional Technical Secretariat (PTS), will preside over the PrepCom’s meetings (twice in June and November), support the CTBTO’s establishment of an effective system to detect and verify nuclear tests, increase people’s awareness of the CTBT, and work towards its entry into force.
o In addition, the Chair, in close consultation with its subsidiary bodies, including the Working Group and the Advisory Group, will handle the CTBTO’s budget, administration and technical issues.
3. With Ambassador Shin’s election as Chair, the ROK has assumed the chairmanship again 20 years after its last chairmanship in 1999. The ROK, as a country directly involved in the North Korean nuclear issue, is expected to contribute to strengthening the international nuclear non-proliferation regime by taking the lead in the CTBTO’s decision-making process.
o In particular, the ROK is also expected to play a positive role in the universalization of the CTBT, aimed at achieving a world free of nuclear testing together with the CTBTO, which has earned international trust after quickly detecting six North Korean nuclear tests in the past.
* unofficial translation