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PSR Condemns North Korean Plans to Conduct Nuclear Test

October 3, 2006

Immediate release

Contact:  Will Callaway
202-667-4260 x224
 
(Washington, DC)  Physicians for Social Responsibility (PSR) condemns the North Korean government's announcement that it will conduct a nuclear test “in the future.”  The announcement, made by Foreign Ministry on October 2nd, will add to the tensions surrounding the North Korean nuclear weapons program and makes any resolution much more difficult.
 
"Nuclear testing has irradiated, killed and harmed millions of people since 1945", said Dr. Kent Bransford, President of the Board at PSR. "The Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty (CTBT) was agreed to in 1996, and North Korea should sign that treaty and join the international community in ending nuclear detonations forever."
 
PSR also notes that the US Senate has refused to ratify the CTBT, denying the US a leadership role in this vital non-proliferation tool and leaving open the possibility that other countries, including North Korea, would conduct their own test explosions.
 
"Developing nuclear weapons, particularly miniaturized weapons that can fit on a missile, is almost impossible without nuclear testing.  By refusing to ratify the CTBT and indeed by seeking ways to avoid the limits of the treaty, the Senate and the administration are leaving Americans vulnerable to the spread of nuclear technology to countries like North Korea and Iran. In so doing, they contribute to the nuclear threat the U.S. supposedly wishes to restrain,” added Bransford.
 
PSR has campaigned since 1961 for an end to nuclear testing and for the prevention of nuclear war.  PSR members know that nuclear weapons pose a grave threat to human health, and US nuclear weapons have, through their development, testing and manufacture, put enormous amounts of radionuclides into our environment, threatening the health of thousands of Americans, even though they are designed as a deterrent to 'protect' America.

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