Conference files, lot 60 D 627, CF 364

Memorandum Prepared by the Belgian Delegation1

[NPC (54) 16]

Memorandum on the Control of Armaments

The control of armaments should be regarded as coming under two distinct headings:

1. Prohibition of the manufacture of certain arms in strategically exposed areas.

What arms?

The arms in categories A, B, and C, and possibly in other categories as well, a list of which should be drawn up.

[Page 1337]

What is meant by a strategically exposed area?

Let us take as a provisional working hypothesis the definition of a strategically exposed area as laid down in the Treaty of Paris, that is to say, the combination of Article 107 with the decision of the Council of Ministers at Strasburg, dated 23rd May, 1952 and further defined by the letter from Chancellor Adenauer dated 27th May, 1952.

Allowance must also be made for civilian needs.

2. Controlled limitation of the manufacture of certain arms to be applied to the continental powers members of the Brussels Treaty Organisation.

What arms?

In principle, these should be heavy armaments, such as aircraft, artillery and tanks.

What criteria should govern limitation?

Principally, the needs of the forces assigned to N.A.T.O., taking into account in addition certain national and overseas military requirements, and the commercial and industrial needs of the countries in question.

How should the requirements of the forces assigned to N.A.T.O. be determined?

A dual criterion should be applied at the outset:

The statistical results arising from the annual revision which determines, for at least three years, a schedule of requirements.
The recommendations of the Supreme Commander of the North Atlantic Powers submitted to the Council of the Brussels Treaty Organisation.

External aid should be deducted from the requirements to be met.

How are the needs of the non-N.A.T.O. Forces to be determined?

These needs should be notified by the State concerned to the Agency cited below and approved by the Council of Ministers on the basis of a procedure to be laid down.

Exports and imports of controlled arms should be notified to the Agency, which should approve them and, if necessary, judge of their genuineness.

How is control of armaments to be ensured?

By an Agency of the Brussels Treaty Organisation—an autonomous administrative organ—which would confirm the requirements according to the accepted criteria, and would submit proposals to the Brussels Treaty Council of Ministers. The action and decisions of this organ should be submitted to the Council of Ministers and agreed by majority vote.

It should also be agreed that the Brussels Treaty Agency present an [Page 1338] annual account of its activities to the Common Assembly of the Coal and Steel Community, to which should be added a certain number of British representatives.

  1. According to a cover sheet attached to the source text, this memorandum was circulated by Spaak at the Fifth Plenary meeting of Sept. 30.