Chinese Agree to Provide Access to Data from 10 Monitoring Stations

Global Security Newswire Staff
National Journal

On Thursday, the Chinese government said that they would share data from 10 stations that monitor seismic waves, infrasound waves and radionuclides with the International Data Centre, according to Science Magazine.

The additional data would provide the International Data Centre, which is run by the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty Organization, with the ability to monitor North Korea's nuclear weapons program, according to the magazine.

In February, seismic readings indicated that North Korea had detonated their third atomic device, but, according to Science, a fissile material known as radioxenon was not detected in large enough quantities for the international community to determine the size and scope of North Korea's nuclear capabilities.   

The agreement was reached after the Lassina Zerbo, executive secretary of CTBTO's preparatory commission, traveled to Beijing earlier in the week.

The magazine also reported that although China is opening up access to monitoring data, the ratification of the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty is still a ways in the future. The treaty has been approved by 159 countries thus far but China, the United States and North Korea are still holding out, according to the magazine.

The next step, according to Science, will be the certification of the 10 Chinese stations by the CTBTO.