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Commission Attacks Nuclear Drift

There has been a dangerous loss of momentum and direction in efforts to rid the world of nuclear weapons, a Commission set up by Sweden says. The Comm ission, led by ex-UN weapons inspector Hans Blix, looked at ways of reducing the dangers from nuclear, biological and chemical weapons. The Report calls on all states to cut arsenals and bring the comprehensive nuclear test ban treaty into force. The 14 commissioners have come up with 60 recommendations. They want nuclear weapons to be outlawed just as biological and chemical weapons are. They call for the Test Ban Treaty - which has not been signed by more than 40 countries - to be ratified. A world summit on disarmament is suggested. Countries that have nuclear weapons, like India, Pakistan and Israel, but have not signed up to the Non-Proliferation Treaty, are told they must be part of the disarmament process too. The Commissioners say an arms race in space must be prevented. In the preface to the Report, which Mr Blix stresses is his personal view, the United States is criticised for its doctrine of claiming the right to use force to remove what it says are threats, rather than acting through the UN Security Council. Mr Blix, who led the hunt for weapons of mass destruction in Iraq, blames US scepticism about international organisations like the UN for some of the setbacks in world disarmament.