UPDATE 1-Indonesia brings atom test ban "closer to global law"

Tue Dec 6, 2011 5:24pm GMT

* Eight countries still need to ratify test ban treaty

* Obama planning new push for pact rejected by Senate in 1999

* China, India, Iran and Israel among others yet to sign (Adds quotes, paragraphs 5 and 10, detail)

JAKARTA/VIENNA, Dec 6 (Reuters) - Indonesia ratified a treaty to ban nuclear weapon tests on Tuesday, a move which the head of the agency set up to monitor the pact said brought it closer to becoming international law.

Adopted by consensus in parliament, Indonesia's endorsement makes it the 156th country to okay the Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty (CTBT).

Indonesia had been among nine countries - including nuclear weapons powers the United States and China, as well as India, Pakistan, Israel, Iran, North Korea, and Egypt - whose approval is needed for the law, negotiated in the 1990s, to take effect.

It brought the treaty a "significant step closer to becoming global law", said Tibor Toth, executive secretary of the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty Organization (CTBTO), in a statement issued in Vienna.

Indonesia's action should create "new momentum" towards the the test ban pact being realised, executive director Daryl Kimball of the Arms Control Association, a Washington-based research and advocacy group, said in a statement.

India, Pakistan, North Korea and Israel are outside the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty, the 1970 pact to prevent the spread of nuclear arms. Iran is part of the NPT but the West accuses it of seeking to develop a capability to build atomic bombs. Tehran denies the charge.   Continued...

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