United States of America: Ratification of Additional Protocol II to the Treaty of Tlatelolco

State United States of America
Treaty Additional Protocol II to the Treaty of Tlatelolco
Action Type Ratification
Depositary Government of Mexico
Date 12 May 1971
Note

1.  Subject to the following understandings:

"(1) That the provisions of the Treaty made applicable by the Additional Protocol do not affect the exclusive power and legal competence under international law of a State adhering to this Protocol to grant or deny transit and transport privileges to its own or any other vessels or aircraft irrespective of cargo or armaments.

"(2) That the provisions of the Treaty made applicable by the Additional Protocol do not affect rights under international law of a State adhering to this Protocol regarding the exercise of the freedom of the seas, or regarding passage through or over waters subject to the sovereignty of a State.

"(3) That the understandings and declarations attached by the United States to its ratification of Additional Protocol II (text attached) apply also to its ratification of Additional Protocol I." (See Note 2 below.)

In a note dated 2 April 1982, the Government of the USSR expressed the following view in connection with the reservation made by the Government of the United States of America:

"The Soviet side considers it necessary to emphasize that the transport of nuclear weapons is covered by the prohibitions provided for in article 1 of the Treaty and that permission of the transit of nuclear weapons in any form through the zone of application of the Treaty would be contrary to the purposes of the Treaty, according to which, as specifically stated in its preamble, Latin America must be wholly free from nuclear weapons, and would be inconsistent with the nuclear-free status of the States Parties to the Treaty and their obligations defined in article 1 thereof.

"It is requested that the Government of Mexico, as depositary of the Treaty for the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons in Latin America, should bring the above position of the Soviet Union to the attention of the States Parties to the Treaty and to its Additional Protocols I and II."

2- With the following declaration:

"In signing Protocol II of the Treaty of Tlatelolco, the United States Government makes the following statement:

"I

"The United States understands that the Treaty and its Protocols have no effect upon the international status of territorial claims. "The United States takes note of the Preparatory Commisison's interpretation of the Treaty, as set forth in the Final Act, that, governed by the principles and rules of international law, each of the Contracting Parties retains exclusive power and legal competence, unaffected by the terms of the Treaty, to grant or deny non-Contracting Parties transit and transport privileges.

"As regards the undertaking in Article 3 of Protocol II not to use or threaten to use nuclear weapons agianst the Contracting Parties, the United States would have to consider that an armed attack by a Contracting Party, in which it was assisted by a nuclear-weapon State, would be incompatible with the Contracting Party's corresponding obligations under Article 1 of the Treaty.

"II

"The United States wishes to point out again the fact that the technology of making nuclear explosive devices for peaceful purposes is indistinguishable from the technology of making nuclear weapons and the fact that nuclear weapons and nuclear explosive devices for peaceful purposes are both capable of releasing nuclear energy in an uncontrolled manner and have the common group of characteristics of large amounts of energy generated instantaneously from a compact source. Therefore, we understand the definition contained in Article 5 of the Treaty as necessarily encompassing all nuclear explosive devices. It is our understanding that Articles 1 and 5 restrict accordingly the activities of the Contracting Parties under paragraph 1 of Article 18.

"The United States further notes that paragraph 4 of Article 18 of the Treaty permits, and that United States adherence to Protocol II will not prevent, collaboration by the United States with Contracting Parties for the purpose of carrying out explosions of nuclear devices for peaceful purposes in a manner consistent with our policy of not contributing to the proliferation of nuclear weapons capabilities. In this connexion, the United States reaffirms its willingness to make available nuclear explosion services for peaceful purposes on a non-discriminatory basis under appropriate international arrangements and to join other nuclear-weapon States in a commitment to do so.

"III

"The United States also wishes to state that, although not required by Protocol II, it will act with respect to such territories of Protocol I adherents as are within the geographical area defined in paragraph 2 of Article 4 of the Treaty in the same manner as Protocol II requires it to act with respect to the territories of Contracting Parties."

3- With the following understanding:

"I

"That the United States Government understands the reference in Article 3 of the treaty to 'its own legislation' to relate only to such legislation as is compatible with the rules of international law and as involves an exercise of sovereignty consistent with those rules, and accordingly that ratification of Additional Protocol II by the United States Government could not be regarded as implying recognition, for the purpose of this treaty and its protocols, or for any other purpose, of any legislation which did not, in the view of the United States, comply with the relevant rules of international law.

"That the United States takes note of the Preparatory Commisison's interpretation of the Treaty, as set forth in the Final Act, that, governed by the principles and rules of international law, each of the Contracting Parties retains exclusive power and legal competence, unaffected by the terms of the Treaty, to grant or deny non-Contracting Parties transit and transport privileges.

"That, as regards the undertaking in Article 3 of Protocol II not to use or threaten to use nuclear weapons agianst the Contracting Parties, the United States would have to consider that an armed attack by a Contracting Party, in which it was assisted by a nuclear-weapon State, would be incompatible with the Contracting Party's corresponding obligations under Article 1 of the Treaty.

"II

"That the United States Government considers that the technology of making nuclear explosive devices for peaceful purposes is indistinguishable from the technology of making nuclear weapons, and that nuclear weapons and nuclear explosive devices for peaceful purposes are both capable of releasing nuclear energy in an uncontrolled manner and have the common group of characteristics of large amounts of energy generated instantaneously from a compact source. Therefore the United States Government understands the definition contained in Article 5 of the Treaty as necessarily encompassing all nuclear explosive devices. It also understands that Articles 1 and 5 restrict accordingly the activities of the contracting parties under paragraph 1 of Article 18.

 

"That the United States Government understands that paragraph 4 of Article 18 of the Treaty permits, and that United States adherence to Protocol II will not prevent, collaboration by the United States with Contracting Parties for the purpose of carrying out explosions of nuclear devices for peaceful purposes in a manner consistent with our policy of not contributing to the proliferation of nuclear weapons capabilities. In this connection, the United States Government notes Article V of the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons, under which it joined in an undertaking to take appropriate measures to ensure that potential benefits of peaceful applications of nuclear explosions would be made available to non-nuclear-weapon states party to that treaty, and reaffirms its willingness to extend such undertaking, on the same basis, to states precluded by the present treaty from manufacturing or acquiring any nuclear explosive device.

"III

"That the United States Government also declares that, although not required by Protocol II, it will act with respect to such territories of Protocol I adherents as are within the geographical area defined in paragraph 2 of Article 4 of the Treaty in the same manner as Protocol II requires it to act with respect to the territories of Contracting Parties." 

Other Actions Signature on deposit with Mexico City — 1 April 1968