parliament

Getting to Zero Update

Russia and the United States have begun the exchange of information on their nuclear arsenals under the New Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (START) as they assess next steps on arms control and also try to resolve their differences over missile defense. The Iranian and North Korean nuclear situations showed no signs of resolution, and instead pointed to more difficulties ahead.

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Iran Update: Number 149

  • Latest IAEA assessment of Iran’s nuclear program echoes recent Agency reports
  • The impact of Stuxnet
  • International divide over sanctions grows
  • Speculation on Iran’s intentions and capabilities
  • Iranian rocketry, missile developments
  • Middle East protests: context and meaning for Iranian leadership and U.S. influence

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Russia ratifies New START

The Russian parliament completed on January 26 its process of advice and consent for ratifying the New START nuclear arms treaty, and President Dmitry Medvedev signed the ratification bill on January 28.

Both houses of the Russian parliament were required to approve of the treaty. The Duma (lower house) provided its final approval on January 25, by a vote of 350-96, with one abstention. The 137 members of the Federation Council (upper house) voted unanimously for the treaty a day later.

Iran Update: Number 148

Getting to Zero Update

Iran Update: Number 147

Getting to Zero Update

The Obama Administration was hoping for the U.S. Senate to ratify the New Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (START) now that the U.S. mid-term elections are over. If the treaty is not brought to the floor before the end of the year, then prospects for the treaty dim in a Senate where more members will be reluctant to hand the President a foreign policy achievement, and votes in favor of the treaty will be more difficult to muster.

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UK and France sign landmark defence agreements

At the UK-France summit in London earlier today, David Cameron and Nicolas Sarkozy issued a declaration and signed a formal Defence Treaty that signalled a new era of defence cooperation. Letters of intent were exchanged and a Road Map agreed for deeper cooperation in the future. Three years in the making, the arrangement focuses on joint capabilities and procurement, but also to a limited extent, operations. There are two areas of specific note in the nuclear field:

Prime Minister confirms Trident decision delayed "until around 2016"

Prime Minister David Cameron confirmed before Parliament today that based upon a completed "value for money review" of the United Kingdom's deterrent, "the decision to start construction of the new submarines need not now be taken until around 2016."

The Prime Minister also highlighted other changes in the nuclear posture:

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