Kohl announces Euromissile position
In yesterday's parliamentary declaration of West German arms control policy that ended two months of drift, Chancellor Helmut Kohl: Endorsed a ``zero option'' for eliminating all superpower missiles in Europe in the 1,000 to 5,500 kilometer range.
Endorsed the qualified ``second zero option'' that the United States also supports in the 500 to 1,000 km range, under which West Germany would keep its 72 Pershing 1-A missiles.
Urged parallel arms control in reducing superpower strategic offensive arsenals by 50 percent, reducing nuclear weapons in the under-500-km range and also conventional forces in Europe, and eliminating chemical weapons worldwide.
The West German grounds for excluding the Pershing 1-A from the current arms control differ from the American reasons. The US says these weapons belong to Bonn and are therefore ``third-country'' weapons that the US cannot negotiate. West Germany, however, which is pledged to possess no nuclear weapons, stresses that only the missiles are West German; the nuclear warheads are American, to be held and released by American troops. Bonn therefore explains the Pershing exclusion by saying that only missiles are being negotiated, not warheads.