Medical & green groups oppose U sales to China

March 31, 2006

With Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao visiting Australia this Saturday-Tuesday, medical and environmental groups are today releasing a statement opposing uranium exports to China. The statement is endorsed by the Medical Association for the Prevention of War, Friends of the Earth, the Australian Conservation Foundation, Greenpeace Australia Pacific, Public Health Association of Australia, Queensland Conservation Council, Environment Centre of the Northern Territory, and the Arids Lands Environment Centre (Alice Springs). It is posted at: <>,

Associate Professor Tilman Ruff, President of the Medical Association for the Prevention of War, the Australian chapter of the Nobel Peace Prize winning International Physicians for Prevention of Nuclear War, said: "China has been a major supplier of nuclear technology to Pakistan, Iran, North Korea and Libya. In Pakistan, China is believed to have supplied nuclear bomb plans, highly enriched uranium, assisted the construction of an unsafeguarded plutonium production reactor at Khusab and the completion of a plutonium reprocessing facility at Chasma.

"China has a large nuclear weapons and material production complex. There is a close coupling between military and civilian nuclear activities - the China National Nuclear Corporation produces, stores, and controls all fissile material for civilian as well as military applications. The regime has not ratified the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty," Assoc. Prof. Ruff said.

Dr. Jim Green from Friends of the Earth said: "It would be naive to believe the federal government's propaganda regarding uranium safeguards. The International Atomic Energy Agency has itself acknowledged that its safeguards inspection system is 'fairly limited' and in need of significant reform."

"Nothing would stand between Australian uranium and Chinese nuclear weapons except the integrity of the Communist regime - a regime which is responsible for five out of six executions carried out around the world, refuses to ratify and abide by a raft of human rights treaties, and persecutes rather than protects whistle-blowers. Perhaps Premier Wen Jiabao could update us on the status of Sun Xiaodi during his visit. Sun Xiaodi was publicly voicing concerns about environmental contamination at a Chinese uranium mine until he was abducted by the Communist regime in April 2005. He has not been heard from since," Dr. Green said.

Statement posted at :

Assoc. Prof. Tilman Ruff (MAPW) 0438 099 231
Dr Jim Green (FoE) 0417 318 368
Peter Robertson (Environment Centre of the Northern Territory) 8981 1984.