anders fogh rasmussen

UN First Committee and NATO Defence Ministers meeting

The United Nations General Assembly First Committee opens today in New York, the UN forum for disarmament and international security affairs. Its month-long session contains an ambitious program of work, including discussion on nuclear weapons and other WMDs, in the weaponisation of space, conventional weapons, regional disarmament and security, and disarmament machinery (conventions and treaties).

Getting to Zero Update

BASIC recently wrapped up a series of events in Cairo, including a joint press workshop with the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty Organization (CTBTO) and an off-the-record seminar on the politics of regional nuclear proliferation.  BASIC staff met with senior officials and former officials to discuss the status of the 2012 conference on a WMD-Free Zone, as a piece in the complex jigsaw of regional politics currently unfolding.

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This Week - NATO Ministerial

NATO’s defence ministers meet in Brussels this week (Wednesday-Thursday), and will discuss a number of priorities for NATO. Longer term planning and the Deterrence and Defense Posture Review (DDPR) is likely to be eclipsed, in public at least, by Colonel Gaddafi’s forces’ last desperate attempts to resist the transfer of power and the role NATO has in the coming months, by the plans for withdrawal from Afghanistan and by the debates over NATO’s missile defense plans and proposals for cooperation with Russia.

Getting to Zero Update

Although implementation of the New START nuclear arms control treaty between Russia and the United States was moving along, disagreement over missile defense continued to pose a serious blockage in the relationship. Diplomatic efforts around North Korea were at an uptick, and India and Pakistan have managed to revive stalled peace talks.

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Experts Urge NATO to Reduce Role of Nuclear Weapons and Open the Door for the Removal of U.S. Tactical Warheads

More than two dozen nuclear experts and former senior government officials (including Sir Malcolm Rifkind and Gen. Bernard Norlain of France) are calling on NATO "to declare a more limited role for its nuclear capabilities that would help open the way for overdue changes to its Cold War-era policy of forward-basing U.S. tactical nuclear weapons. This would help facilitate another, post-New START round of reductions, which should involve of all types of Russian and U.S.

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Getting to Zero Update

Should Israel join NATO?

NATO secretary-general Anders Fogh Rasmussen has called for the alliance to expand cooperation with Israel. Israel has been part of the Mediterranean dialogue with the North Atlantic Treaty Organization, which includes Arab states such as Tunisia and Egypt, since 1994. But there have been recent calls for NATO to deepen the relationship still further by accepting Israel as a member.

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