Statement by Assistant
to the President for Press Relations Fitzwater on the Soviet-United States
Joint Verification Experiment for Nuclear Testing
September 14, 1988
at the Soviet nuclear test site at Semipalatinsk, the United States and the Soviet Union conducted the second
and concluding phase of the Joint Verification Experiment (JVE). As in the
successful first phase of the JVE last month at the U.S. nuclear test site in Nevada, U.S. and Soviet scientists,
technicians, and observers were present to measure the yield of the explosion.
believe these experiments have demonstrated the effectiveness and nonintrusiveness of CORRTEX, our preferred method, and
should allow the Soviet Union to accept its routine use.
JVE process is the result of a U.S. initiative embodied in
the agreement reached at the Moscow summit which provided
for one underground nuclear explosion experiment at the U.S. test site in Nevada and another at the
Soviet test site. Following today's phase of the JVE, U.S. and Soviet negotiators
return to Geneva to continue the current
round of negotiations on nuclear testing. Our objective for these negotiations
is to conclude an agreement on effective verification measures for the unratified Threshold Test Ban Treaty (TTBT) and the
Peaceful Nuclear Explosions Treaty (PNET). Today's JVE at Semipalatinsk moves us further toward
achieving agreement on the effective verification protocols which are essential
for the two treaties and reflects the success of the administration's practical
and measured approach to nuclear testing issues.