United Nations

A/RES/48/74


General Assembly

Distr. GENERAL  

16 December 1993

ORIGINAL:
ENGLISH



                                                  A/RES/48/74
                                                  81st plenary meeting
                                                  16 December 1993
 
                    Prevention of an arms race in outer space
 
                                       A
 
                   Prevention of an arms race in outer space
 
      The General Assembly,
 
      Recognizing the common interest of all mankind in the exploration and
use of outer space for peaceful purposes,
 
      Reaffirming the will of all States that the exploration and use of outer
space, including the Moon and other celestial bodies, shall be for peaceful
purposes, shall be carried out for the benefit and in the interest of all
countries, irrespective of their degree of economic or scientific development,
and shall be the province of all mankind,
 
      Reaffirming also provisions of articles III and IV of the Treaty on
Principles Governing the Activities of States in the Exploration and Use of
Outer Space, including the Moon and Other Celestial Bodies,
 
      Recalling the obligation of all States to observe the provisions of the
Charter of the United Nations regarding the use or threat of use of force in
their international relations, including in their space activities,
 
      Reaffirming further paragraph 80 of the Final Document of the Tenth
Special Session of the General Assembly, in which it is stated that in order
to prevent an arms race in outer space further measures should be taken and
appropriate international negotiations held in accordance with the spirit of
the Treaty,
 
      Recalling also its previous resolutions on this question and the Final
Document adopted by the Tenth Conference of Heads of State or Government of
Non-Aligned Countries, held at Jakarta from 1 to 6 September 1992, and taking
note of the proposals submitted to the General Assembly at its tenth special
session and at its regular sessions, and of the recommendations made to the
competent organs of the United Nations and to the Conference on Disarmament,
 
      Recognizing the grave danger for international peace and security of an
arms race in outer space and of developments contributing to it,
 
      Emphasizing the paramount importance of strict compliance with existing
arms limitation and disarmament agreements relevant to outer space, including
bilateral agreements, and with the existing legal regime concerning the use of
outer space,
 
      Considering that wide participation in the legal regime applicable to
outer space could contribute to enhancing its effectiveness,
 
      Noting that bilateral negotiations, begun in 1985 between the Union of
Soviet Socialist Republics and the United States of America, were conducted
with the declared objective of working out effective agreements aimed, inter
alia, at preventing an arms race in outer space,
 
      Welcoming the re-establishment of the Ad Hoc Committee on the Prevention
of an Arms Race in Outer Space at the 1993 session of the Conference on
Disarmament, in the exercise of the negotiating responsibilities of this sole
multilateral body on disarmament, to continue to examine and identify, through
substantive and general consideration, issues relevant to the prevention of an
arms race in outer space,
 
      Noting also that the Ad Hoc Committee on the Prevention of an Arms Race
in Outer Space, taking into account its previous efforts since its
establishment in 1985 and seeking to enhance its functioning in qualitative
terms, continued the examination and identification of various issues,
existing agreements and existing proposals, as well as future initiatives
relevant to the prevention of an arms race in outer space, and that this
contributed to a better understanding of a number of problems and to a clearer
perception of the various positions,
 
      Emphasizing the mutually complementary nature of bilateral and
multilateral efforts in the field of preventing an arms race in outer space,
and hoping that concrete results will emerge from those efforts as soon as
possible,
 
      Convinced that further measures should be examined in the search for
effective and verifiable bilateral and multilateral agreements in order to
prevent an arms race in outer space,
 
      Stressing that the growing use of outer space increases the need for
greater transparency and better information on the part of the international
community,
 
      Recalling in this context its previous resolutions, in particular
resolutions 45/55 B of 4 December 1990 and 47/51 of 9 December 1992, in which,
inter alia, it reaffirmed the importance of confidence-building measures as
means conducive to ensuring the attainment of the objective of the prevention
of an arms race in outer space,
 
      Conscious of the benefits of confidence- and security- building measures
in the military field,
 
      Recognizing that there was wide agreement in the Ad Hoc Committee that
the conclusion of an international agreement or agreements to prevent an arms
race in outer space remained the fundamental task of the Committee and that
the concrete proposals on confidence-building measures could form an integral
part of such agreements,
 
      1.    Reaffirms the importance and urgency of preventing an arms race in
outer space and the readiness of all States to contribute to that common
objective, in conformity with the provisions of the Treaty on Principles
Governing the Activities of States in the Exploration and Use of Outer Space,
including the Moon and Other Celestial Bodies;
 
      2.    Reaffirms its recognition, as stated in the report of the Ad Hoc
Committee on the Prevention of an Arms Race in Outer Space, that the legal
regime applicable to outer space by itself does not guarantee the prevention
of an arms race in outer space, that this legal regime plays a significant
role in the prevention of an arms race in that environment, that there is a
need to consolidate and reinforce that regime and enhance its effectiveness,
and that it is important strictly to comply with existing agreements, both
bilateral and multilateral;
 
      3.    Emphasizes the necessity of further measures with appropriate and
effective provisions for verification to prevent an arms race in outer space;
 
      4.    Calls upon all States, in particular those with major space
capabilities, to contribute actively to the objective of the peaceful use of
outer space and of the prevention of an arms race in outer space and to
refrain from actions contrary to that objective and to the relevant existing
treaties in the interest of maintaining international peace and security and
promoting international cooperation;
 
      5.    Reiterates that the Conference on Disarmament, as the single
multilateral disarmament negotiating forum, has the primary role in the
negotiation of a multilateral agreement or agreements, as appropriate, on the
prevention of an arms race in outer space in all its aspects;
 
      6.    Requests the Conference on Disarmament to consider as a matter of
priority the question of preventing an arms race in outer space;
 
      7.    Also requests the Conference on Disarmament to intensify its
consideration of the question of the prevention of an arms race in outer space
in all its aspects, building upon areas of convergence and taking into account
relevant proposals and initiatives, including those presented in the Ad Hoc
Committee at the 1993 session of the Conference and at the forty- eighth
session of the General Assembly;
 
      8.    Further requests the Conference on Disarmament to re-establish an
ad hoc committee with an adequate mandate at the beginning of its 1994 session
and to continue building upon areas of convergence, taking into account the
work undertaken since 1985, with a view to undertaking negotiations for the
conclusion of an agreement or agreements, as appropriate, to prevent an arms
race in outer space in all its aspects;
 
      9.    Recognizes, in this respect, the growing convergence of views on
the elaboration of measures designed to strengthen transparency, confidence
and security in the peaceful uses of outer space;
 
      10.   Urges the Russian Federation and the United States of America to
resume their bilateral negotiations with a view to reaching early agreement
for preventing an arms race in outer space, and to advise the Conference on
Disarmament periodically of the progress of their bilateral sessions so as to
facilitate its work;
 
      11.   Decides to include in the provisional agenda of its forty-ninth
session the item entitled "Prevention of an arms race in outer space".
 
                                       B
 
                Study on the application of confidence-building
                            measures in outer space
 
      The General Assembly,
 
      Recalling its resolution 45/55 B of 4 December 1990, in which it
requested the Secretary-General to carry out, with the assistance of
government experts, a study on the specific aspects related to the application
of different confidence-building measures in outer space, including the
different technologies available, and possibilities for defining appropriate
mechanisms of international cooperation in specific areas of interest,
 
      1.    Takes note of the report of the Secretary-General, the annex to
which contains the study on the application of confidence-building measures in
outer space;
 
      2.    Requests the Secretary-General to arrange for the
reproduction of the study as a United Nations publication and to
give it the widest possible distribution;
 
      3.    Commends the study to the attention of all Member States.