By Jamshed Baruah
GENEVA (IDN) – South Africa, the only country that went from developing its own nuclear arsenal to dismantling it and being an outspoken advocate against these weapons of mass destruction, took another critical step towards a nuclear-weapons-free-world: on February 25: it ratified in the halls of the UN Headquarters in New York, the UN Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons (TPNW). [2019-02-28]
By CTBTO Preparatory Commission
VIENNA (IDN-INPS) – The CTBTO participated in the Africa Commission on Nuclear Energy (AFCONE) special session held in Algiers from February 12-13, 2019.
Created by the Pelindaba Treaty, establishing Africa as Nuclear Weapons Free Zone (NWFZ) in 2009, AFCONE plays an important role in regional efforts on disarmament and non-proliferation. It also promotes peaceful and scientific benefits of nuclear technology in Africa. [2019-02-27]
Viewpoint by Jonathan Power
LUND, Sweden (IDN-INPS) – Kim Jong-un, paramount leader of the North Korean dictatorship, arrived in Vietnam by train and limousine ready to meet President Donald Trump. The two leaders met in June 2018 in Singapore, applauded themselves and each other and made some sort of a deal even if it wasn’t the one Trump boasted about – the total elimination of the North’s nuclear weapons. [2019-02-26]
By Reinhard Jacobsen
VIENNA (IDN) – Enhancing regulatory framework for nuclear security in Africa has been on the agenda of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), nuclear watchdog of the United Nations, for nearly two years.
Against this backdrop, lawyers and nuclear scientists from 10 African countries reviewed the status of their countries’ regulatory frameworks for the security of radioactive material and developed action plans to address any identified gaps during the IAEA’s first School on Drafting Nuclear Security Regulations for African Countries. [2019-02-25]
By J Nastranis
NEW YORK (IDN) – Emerging hypersonic weapon technologies present a challenge for the existing arms control and disarmament architecture at a time when it is already under strain. Because hypersonic weapons do not count towards the limits of the New START (Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty), which is the key arms control agreement limiting the strategic delivery systems of the two major nuclear powers, Russia and the United States, warns a new study. Nevertheless, several States are actively pursuing novel long-range manoeuvrable weapons, most significantly hypersonic boost-glide systems comprising ballistic missiles equipped with hypersonic glide vehicles (HGVs). [2019-02-24]
Viewpoint by Izumi Nakamitsu
Following are extensive excerpts from a video briefing by Izumi Nakamitsu, the United Nations High Representative for Disarmament Affairs (UNODA), to the 65-nation Conference on Disarmament in Geneva on 7 February 2019.
NEW YORK | GENEVA (IDN-INPS) – 2019 will be a weighty year for the Conference on Disarmament. As a global community we are beset by challenges. In the field of disarmament our progress has slowed to a crawl and is in imminent danger of suffering reversals. Instead of seeking to enhance what binds us, we tend to focus on what divides us. [2019-02-23]
By Somar Wijayadasa*
NEW YORK | MUNICH (IDN) – "The whole liberal world order appears to be falling apart – nothing is as it once was," said Wolfgang Ischinger, a senior German diplomat in an opinion article in the run-up to the 2019 Munich Security Conference (MSC) that he chairs.
He added: "When Vladimir Putin annexed Crimea and started the bloody conflict in Eastern Ukraine in 2014, many considered him to be the major cause of global destabilization." [2019-02-22]
Despite everything, it is still in our power to avoid nuclear confrontation.
Viewpoint by Mikhail Gorbachev*
MOSCOW (IDN-INPS) – The fate of the INF treaty has politicians and ordinary people worried on every continent. I am also concerned, and not only because I signed that treaty with former U.S. President Ronald Reagan in Dec. 1987. These events are yet another manifestation of the dangerous and destructive trends in world politics facing us today. [2019-02-21]
By Katsuhiro Asagiri
TOKYO (IDN) – Nearly 66 years have passed since the Armistice Agreement formally brought about "a complete cessation of hostilities" of the Korean War. One year later, Chinese Premier and Foreign Minister Zhou Enlai proposed a peace treaty. But U.S. Secretary of State, John Foster Dulles, refused – leaving a final peace settlement on the Korean Peninsula hanging in the air. [2019-02-20 | P21] CHINESE | JAPANESE TEXT VERSION PDF | KOREAN | SPANISH
Viewpoint by Sergio Duarte
The writer is President of Pugwash Conferences on Science and World Affairs, and a former UN High Representative for Disarmament Affairs. He was president of the 2005 Nonproliferation Treaty Review Conference.
NEW YORK (IDN) – Although humankind has known since the dawn of ages the sorrow, misery and devastation caused by war, the most catastrophic military conflicts in history are quite recent.
World War I lasted from July 1914 to November 1918 and claimed some 40 million lives, among civilians and combatants. In all, between 70-85 million people perished during World War II that lasted from 1939 to 1945. The estimated war casualties include those who are believed to have died from war-related causes, including captivity, disease and famine. [2019-02-06 | P20] JAPANESE TEXT VERSION PDF | SPANISH