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USA: Nuclear Weapons

Volume 505: debated on Friday 5 February 2010

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what discussions he has had with the US administration on stockpiles of nuclear weapons; and what his policy is on the steps to be taken by the Government and the US administration on reducing such stockpiles. (315931)

My right hon. Friend the Foreign Secretary and US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton regularly discuss nuclear issues, and UK officials frequently discuss with the US the implementation of all aspects of the non-proliferation treaty including our article VI disarmament obligations.

We look forward to an agreement between the US and Russia to achieve significant cuts in their nuclear arsenals by agreeing a successor to the strategic arms reduction treaty. This will be a major contribution to our shared endeavour towards a world without nuclear weapons, and will help to build trust and pave the way for greater reductions.

The UK has taken a number of significant disarmament steps in recent years, and is committed to retaining only the minimum credible nuclear deterrent capability; we regularly review the number of warheads in the UK stockpile in that light. The UK firmly believes that sustainable global nuclear disarmament can only be achieved through a multilateral process, and stands ready to engage in a broader multilateral process when the conditions are right.

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what recent discussions he has had with the US administration on international nuclear proliferation. (315932)

My right hon. Friend the Foreign Secretary discusses a range of international nuclear proliferation issues regularly with Secretary of State Clinton and the US Administration and did so most recently on 28 January 2010. My hon. Friend Mr. Ivan Lewis has done likewise with his counterparts. Strengthening the nuclear non-proliferation regime and re-energising the nuclear non-proliferation treaty is a top foreign policy priority for the Government and the US Government.