White House Statement on the Resumption of the Soviet-United States Nuclear Testing Talks


August 29, 1988


On Monday, August 29, the United States and the Soviet Union will resume step-by-step negotiations on nuclear testing with the opening of round three of the nuclear testing talks in Geneva. The first priority of these talks remains an agreement on effective verification measures for two existing but unratified treaties: the Threshold Test Ban Treaty (TTBT) and the Peaceful Nuclear Explosions Treaty (PNET).


We are making good progress toward our goal. On August 17 the first phase of the Joint Verification Experiment (JVE) was successfully concluded, with U.S. and Soviet scientists, technicians, and observers present at the U.S. nuclear test site in Nevada. There each side was able to demonstrate the use of its on-site, direct hydrodynamic methods to measure the yield of a U.S. nuclear explosion. In mid-September, U.S. scientists, technicians, and observers will be present for the Soviet phase of the JVE at the Soviet nuclear test site at Semipalatinsk.


We will continue to press for agreement on effective verification measures so that these two treaties can be ratified. As we return to Geneva, we look for the cooperation of the Soviet Union to achieve this objective.


The U.S. delegation to the nuclear testing talks is headed by Ambassador C. Paul Robinson.