Tuesday 17 Jul 2018 | 00:28 | SYDNEY
Tuesday 17 Jul 2018 | 00:28 | SYDNEY

The 6PT: An alternative take

By

Martine Letts

1 April 2008 13:26

Here's an alternative take on the idea of institutionalising the Six-Party Talks as a regional security mechanism. Nuclear disarmament and nuclear non-proliferation have not been prominent in the international policy priorities emphasised so far by the Prime Minister during his visit to the US and the UN. This is at a time that the idea of nuclear disarmament is experiencing a revival in US policy circles, and at a time where nuclear proliferation pressures are building in the Middle East and North Asia.

The Six-Party Talks have their origins in persuading North Korea to forswear nuclear weapons. Viewed from that perspective, the Prime Minister’s support for a regional mechanism based on the Six-Party Talks, which flows from a nuclear disarmament objective, is positive. An East Asian region free of nuclear tensions is directly relevant to Australian interests. A healthy and robust global non-proliferation system is also directly relevant to Australia's security interests and to our status as one of the world's major suppliers of uranium with ambitions to export more.