Asia

Going back to the Six-Party Talks, is there any hope?

North Korea’s nuclear weapons program has given rise to much debate on the security challenges that it brings to the international system. Its deployment of ballistic missiles and testing of nuclear devices (2006, 2009, and 2013) have alarmed states around the world, and posed dangers and threats to the region. In fact, recent activity at North Korea’s nuclear facility has given rise to new concerns about the possibility of a fourth nuclear test. 

Heeding the outcomes & remaining challenges of the 2014 Nuclear Security Summit

On March 24-25, 53 world leaders convened at The Hague for the third Nuclear Security Summit to discuss the implementation of national measures to protect vulnerable fissile and radiological material from belligerence-prone hands. The following commentary focuses on the summit’s outcomes and remaining challenges as a platform to build on for continued progress.

TNW, The Quiet Menace: How the Threats to Europe, the Middle East and South Asia are Linked

London’s International Institute for Strategic Studies (IISS; what – you haven’t applied for membership yet?) recently published their annual review of world affairs, Strategic Survey 2013. In its chapter on strategic policy issues, the Survey covers an important topic, the complex nuclear arms race underway in South Asia among India, Pakistan and China.

Friends, foes, & the unstable future: the impact of nukes on security relations in South Asia

The volatile security environment of South Asia has traditionally been dominated by on-going tensions and conflicts between Pakistan and India, who have held a tense and inimical relationship since their emergence as separate nations in 1947. The threat perception arising out of the historical tension and enduring rivalry between both countries has put them in a security dilemma in which the risk of nuclear conflict simply cannot be ruled out.

Getting to Zero Update

Officials from China, France, Russia, the United Kingdom, and the United States (“P5”) held their third special forum since 2009 to discuss nuclear disarmament and non-proliferation, this time in Washington, DC. Separately, representatives from Iran and the P5 plus Germany, have met at various levels without producing a breakthrough over Iran’s nuclear program amid rising tensions in the Middle East.

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Will the NWS fail to support the NWFZ...again?

Foreign Ministers from the five recognized nuclear weapons states (NWS) meet on Thursday with members of the ASEAN Regional Forum (ARF). There had been an expectation that the NWS would at last endorse the Southeast Asian Nuclear-Weapon-Free Zone (NWFZ) by signing up to its Protocol, but they are still expressing reservations over the scope of the Treaty and its restriction on the passage of NWS vessels through the surrounding seas. China also has particular concerns that the Treaty treads on its territorial sovereignty – it is already in dispute with ASEAN members over the South China Seas.

Getting to Zero Update

NATO completed its Deterrence and Defense Posture Review with mixed results. Diplomacy over Iran’s nuclear program picked up pace. A National Academies panel released its updated assessment on the Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty’s implications for U.S. security, with apparent positive conclusions for supporters.

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