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                          A FAREWELL TO CHEMICAL ARMS 


    Address by  the Foreign Minister of Israel,  Mr.  Shimon Peres,  at the
    Signing  Ceremony  of the  Chemical Weapons  Convention Treaty,  Paris,
    January 13, 1993.


    His  Excellency  the  President  of  France,  Francois  Mitterand,  His
    Excellency the Secretary-General of the United Nations, Mr. Ghali,  The
    Director-General  of  UNESCO,  Mr.  Mayor,  His Excellency  the Foreign
    Minister of Germany Mr. Kinkel, the Secretary-General of the Conference
    of Disarmament Mr. Berasategui, Distinguished Foreign Ministers,

    Dear Delegates,

    I would  like to  thank and  praise the  framers and organizers of this
    convention for  years of dedication and hard work,  and to thank France
    for hosting this noble event.

    In spite  of all  the difficulties,  the peace process in our region is
    continuing. No party can escape it.

    We seek  to resolve the disputes of the past over frontiers and respond
    to the  call of  new horizons  of our  age.  Our vision is a new Middle
    East,  where the  skies will be free from missiles,  the land free from
    desert,  the waters free form salt,  its peoples free from violence and
    its children free from ignorance.

    There is  no weapon  against non-conventional  weapons.  There are only
    policies to  prevent their  use,  and preferably  their production.  We
    would like to adopt an Helsinki-type approach,  where human rights will
    replace  human  menaces  -- a  Middle  East  with a  common market  and
    collective  security.  No  nation  in  the  region  will enjoy  genuine
    security unless all nations feel secure.

    Accordingly,  we hvae  formulated our  policy on  regional security and
    arms control, once peace has been attained.

    We seek  to live  in a region in which full and lasting peace prevails,
    based on reconciliation, good neighborliness,  open borders,  trust and
    respect among nations.

    In  the   spirit  of   the  global  pursuit  of  general  and  complete
    disarmament,  and the establishment of regional and global arms control
    regimes,  Israel  suggests  to  all  the  countries  of  the  region to
    construct  a  mutually  verifiable  zone,  free  of  surface-to-surface
    missiles and of chemical, biological and nuclear weapons.

    In order to establish regional security it is necessary:

    * To  curtail   the  arms   race  and   prevent  the  proliferation  of
    de-stabilizing weapons;

    * To build and nurture mutual confidence between states;

    * To diminish the levels of suspicion, hostility and conflagration;

    * To  reduce  the incentives  and capabilities  for launching  surprise
    attacks;

    * To enhance crisis management and stability;

    * To ensure compliance with arms control accords;

    * To  install   mutual  challenge   inspections  once  peace  has  been
    established and endured the test of time.

    In the  course of  the multilateral  regional security and arms control
    process,  we will  deal with  various types of threats and capabilities
    and intentions, in relation to:

    * military and para-military activities;

    * military and security forces deployment;

    * defense expenditures, conventional hardware and weapons systems;

    * ballistic missiles, chemical, biological and nuclear weapons.

    Arms control  negotiations and  arrangements should  be mutually agreed
    upon  and  include all  the states  of the  region.  Implementation and
    verification mechanisms, the establishment of comprehensvie and durable
    peace,  should be  region-wide in  their application.  Priority in this
    process ought  to be  assigned to systems whose destabilizing potential
    and  effects  have  been  proven  through  their use  in wars  and have
    inflicted mass casualties.

    The Chemical  Weapons Convention  must refer itself to our region,  and
    the region  at large  must adhere to its principles and comply with its
    provisions.  To reduce  the conventional arms race and military buildup
    and prevent non-conventional proliferation, the suppliers and exporters
    should  cease  their conterproductive  policies of  indiscriminate arms
    sales.

    We propose to our neighbors to jointly formulate appropriate mechanisms
    for  inspection.  We  have adhered  to the  Missile Technology  Control
    Regime (MTCR), and expect the CWC to constitute a further step forward.
    We cherish  the principles  of universality and equality among nations.
    Naturally,  we  expect  equal rights  of geographic  membership in  the
    institutions established by the Convention.

    We hope that peace and arms control will lead to democratization of the
    region,  which will  strengthen the commitment to peace and bring about
    openness and  greater transparency  between states.  We  believe in the
    Biblical vision  that "Nation  will not  lift up  a sword against other
    nations,  nor shall  they learn  war any  more." Isaiah was  not just a
    great prophet, he was also a profound educator.

    I  call  upon  our  Arab neighbors  to establish  a broad  arms control
    dialogue with  us,  and I  call upon  all parties  to sign the Chemical
    Weapons Convention,  and build a new Middle East free of the horrors of
    war.

    One thousand years ago in Spain, Jewish-Arab cohabitation and symbiosis
    contributed  to   the  formation  and  shaping  of  world  culture  for
    generations.  A present-day Jewish-Arab symbiosis may contribute to the
    cultural formation of the next millenia.
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