The official draft text of a treaty to ban nuclear weapons is likely to be published in the next two weeks (15-26 May). This timing has been determined by the intention to avoid distracting from the NPT PrepCom, drawing to a close on 11 May. Written by the Chair of the process, the draft will be considered by states at the next round of negotiations to be held at the UN headquarters in New York from 15 June-7 July. That leaves ban treaty proponents two weeks to lobby governments around the world and get their support.
The need for nuclear disarmament through multilateral diplomacy is greater now than it has been at any stage since the end of the Cold War. Trust and confidence in the existing nuclear non-proliferation regime is fraying, tensions are high, goals are misaligned, and dialogue is irregular.
In Meaningful Multilateralism, BASIC and UNA–UK offer 30 multilateral disarmament proposals for the incoming UK Government after the General Election on the 8th June, themed according to three types of leadership the UK has previously shown in disarmament:
What are states' responsibilities around the possession of nuclear weapons?
Our latest report, written in partnership with the Institute for Conflict, Cooperation, and Security (ICCS), at the University of Birmingham, seeks to foster an international dialogue about the responsibilities of nuclear-armed states.
On 5th October, the UN International Court of Justice (ICJ) rejected proceedings made by the Republic of the Marshall Islands against three nuclear-armed states -- India, Pakistan and the United Kingdom -- for alleged failure to negotiate on the cessation of the nuclear arms race and nuclear d
Discussions about the feasibility and necessity of a legal ban on nuclear weapons took centre stage at the first session of the United Nation’s Open-Ended Working Group (OEWG) on taking forward multilateral nuclear disarmament. The states legally recognized under the Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) as nuclear-weapon states (NWS) were nowhere to be seen, leaving their allies to argue the case for pragmatic caution; India, Pakistan, Israel and North Korea were also absent.
Trump’s Nuclear Rhetoric and its implications for European Security
Further questions were raised over the direction of US nuclear posture review last week. In an exclusive interview with Reuters, Trump opined that the US has 'fallen behind on nuclear weapon capacity' and pledged the US to be 'top of the pack' when it comes to nuclear weapons.
This background briefing gives context, recent history, and key issues affecting the 'P5' meeting of the NPT nuclear weapon states in Geneva this week (April 18th-19th) and speculates as to what is likely to be on the agenda.