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ACA’s journal, Arms Control Today, remains the best in the market. Well focused. Solidly researched. Prudent.

– Hans Blix,
former IAEA Director-General

Arms Control NOW

Visiting Vienna: What Haley Needs to Remember About Verifying the Iran Nuclear Deal

This week, U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley is traveling to Vienna to discuss Iran’s nuclear activities with officials from the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA). The ambassador’s visit precedes the Oct. 15 quarterly deadline for the Trump administration to certify whether Iran is complying with the 2015 nuclear deal known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA). Troublingly, while the IAEA has demonstrated Iran’s compliance in its reports seven times since the deal took effect, President Donald Trump reportedly tasked his aides with providing a...

5 Myths on Nuclear Diplomacy with North Korea

The struggle to address the nuclear and missile threat posed by North Korea has been underway for more than a quarter-century, but public and policymaker attention to the problems has been episodic and often superficial, leading to the emergence of misperceptions and myths about past efforts and current prospects for addressing the threat. The following is a review of some of the most common myths about past U.S. efforts to address the threat and how the United States and its allies can halt and reverse North Korea’s nuclear and missile pursuits in the future. Myth 1. Diplomacy with North...

U.S. Policy on North Korea: More Pressure, But Where’s the “Engagement?”

The UN Security Council responded to North Korea’s two intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) tests in July by unanimously passing new sanctions on North Korea over the weekend. But without a more concerted effort to engage Pyongyang in negotiations, these measures stand little chance of altering North Korea’s nuclear calculus. While the additional Security Council sanctions in Resolution 2371 send a strong signal to North Korea that there are consequences for flouting international prohibitions, sanctions alone are not a strategy for addressing the North Korean nuclear threat. It is past...

The P5+1 and Iran Nuclear Deal Alert, July 27, 2017

Joint Commission Meets After U.S. Certification Controversy Sanctions were a key topic of discussion at the July 21 quarterly meeting of the Joint Commission, a body set up by the P5+1 and Iran to oversee the nuclear agreement known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA). Representatives from Iran, the P5+1 states (China, France, Germany, Russia, the United Kingdom and the United States), and the European Union comprise the Joint Commission and were present in Vienna for the meeting. One controversial sanctions issue is the comment made by President Donald Trump at the G-20 meeting...

Iran’s Simorgh Rocket Test in Perspective

Iran announced Thursday it had launched a Simorgh rocket space-launch vehicle (SLV) from the Imam Khomeini National Space Station. Although Iranian state media claimed a successful launch, no independent sources have confirmed this assertion. The rocket launch comes amid escalatory rhetoric between Tehran and Washington surrounding the future of the 2015 nuclear deal known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA). Last week, the State Department certified Iran’s compliance with the JCPOA, as required by Congress every 90 days. Nevertheless, President Trump recently told The Wall...

Moscow is ready to discuss New START, but where is Washington?

In a July 18 interview with Kommersant , Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov reiterated Russia’s offer to begin talks with the United States on extending the 2010 New Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (New START) . Ryabkov’s comments echoed previous statements he and other Russian officials—including President Vladimir Putin—have made in support of starting talks on an extension. The option of extending New START had been broached by the Obama administration in late-2016, but Russia was noncommittal at the time. In a January phone call with President Donald Trump, Putin reportedly...

Senator Reiterates Support for Iran Nuclear Deal

Senator Chris Coons (D-Del.), in keynote remarks yesterday at a Middle East Institute conference on U.S. policy toward Iran, argued the United States should continue upholding the 2015 nuclear deal, known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), while also pushing back on Iran for other actions as needed. The Trump administration is currently reviewing its own policy toward Iran, including U.S. participation in the nuclear deal, despite the success of the agreement to date. Coons said the Iran review is being conducted in a “thorough and professional manner” by the National Security...

The P5+1 and Iran Nuclear Deal Alert, July 2017

The Iran Nuclear Deal Turns Two Friday, July 14, will mark the two-year anniversary of the P5+1 (China, France, Germany, Russia, the United Kingdom and the United States) and Iran finalizing the nuclear agreement known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA.) Since the deal was completed in 2015, Iran has restricted its nuclear activities and allowed for far more extensive monitoring and verification. Six reports of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) show that Iran is meeting its commitments under the deal. In return, Iran is benefiting from U.S., EU, and UN sanctions...

Missing the Mark on Iran's Missiles

Despite implementation of the 2015 nuclear deal between Tehran and the six world powers known as the P5+1 (China, France, Germany, Russia, the United Kingdom, and the United States), the Iranian missile program remains controversial. Last week, U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley excoriated Iran for its “destructive and destabilizing role” in the region, with Iran’s missile testing and procurement of missile-related technology featuring prominently in her remarks. Yet as the Trump administration conducts its Iran policy review, it would be wise to consider the facts when...

Banning the Bomb—A Blog of the Nuclear Weapons Prohibition Talks

Alicia Sanders-Zakre will be tweeting and blogging throughout the Nuclear Weapons Prohibition Talks at the United Nations. Follow her real-time updates at twitter.com/azakre . Second Negotiating Session: June 15-July 7, 2017 UN Adopts Treaty Banning Nuclear Weapons July 7, 2017 Today by a vote of 122-1 with 1 abstention, states adopted a historic treaty prohibiting nuclear weapons at the United Nations in New York. The Netherlands voted against the treaty and Singapore abstained. Before adopting the treaty, Ambassador Elayne Whyte Gomez declared that “after many decades, we have managed to...

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