Foreign Minister Maas issued the following statement today (29 April) on the presentation of the Federal Government’s Annual Disarmament Report for 2019 in the cabinet:
The coronavirus crisis is currently the most acute threat we face, but it is far from our only challenge. We in Europe are clearly reminded of this when we think of the termination of the INF treaty. In the past year, we, the Federal Government, have therefore further stepped up our efforts to ensure that arms control and disarmament remain high on the international agenda. With technical advancements set to make international arms control an ever more complex undertaking, we need to find new partners and build coalitions to shape a secure future. This is the only way we can maintain an overview and control of the situation and prevent proliferation. Multilateral cooperation is our best option if we are to overcome existing and emerging challenges.
Over the past year, we have been able to successfully expand our cooperation efforts. Within the United Nations, we have agreed on guiding principles to prevent killer robots from becoming a reality on the battlefield. As a member of the Security Council, we have put nuclear disarmament on the international agenda and reached agreement with the 16 countries of the Stockholm Initiative at the meeting of foreign ministers in Berlin on further steps to be taken towards nuclear disarmament and non-proliferation. We are in no doubt that the non-proliferation of nuclear weapons remains our primary goal. We are therefore continuing to support the International Atomic Energy Agency during this period of crisis to ensure that it can pursue its activities without interruption and that implementation of the Non-Proliferation Treaty continues.