Nuclear Policy News – April 2, 2019

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Top News

IAEA Says Iran Abiding by Nuclear Deal
Arms Control Association

4 Things to Know About the U.S. Nuclear Deterrence Strategy
U.S. Department of Defense

Nuclear Arms Control Without a Treaty? Risks and Options After New START
Center for Naval Analyses

East Asia

Moon Stays Positive on Denuclearization Talks Following N. Korean Embassy Raid
Voice of America4/2/2019
North Korea has called a daylight raid on its Madrid embassy in February a “grave terrorist attack” and called for a full investigation into the incident that took place the week preceding the second summit between its leader, Kim Jong Un, and U.S. President Donald Trump.

An Uncertain Future for North Korean Talks
Arms Control Association4/1/2019
North Korean leader Kim Jong Un may be losing interest in diplomacy with the United States, according to officials in Pyongyang, creating uncertainty around the future of U.S.-North Korean negotiations. If the two sides do resume talks, diplomats will need to overcome persistent differences that contributed to the abrupt end of the second summit between Kim and U.S. President Donald Trump in Hanoi Feb. 28.

Middle East

IAEA Says Iran Abiding by Nuclear Deal
Arms Control Association4/1/2019
The head of the international organization charged with monitoring Iran’s compliance with the 2015 nuclear deal said Iran is meeting its obligations under the accord and warned against states trying to influence verification activities. Less than three weeks later, the United States imposed sanctions against Iranian officials and institutions that Washington alleges are working to retain nuclear weapons-related expertise in Iran.

Multilateral Arms Control

Treaty’s end would give U.S., Russia impetus to make more nukes – study
The demise of the only U.S.-Russia arms control pact limiting deployed nuclear weapons would make it harder for each to gauge the other’s intentions, giving both incentives to expand their arsenals, according to a study released on Monday.

Merkel: Germany, like U.S., thinks Russia has violated nuclear arms treaty
Germany, like the United States, believes that Russia has breached the Cold War-era Intermediate-range Nuclear Forces Treaty, Chancellor Angela Merkel said on Tuesday.

New START Extension Debated
Arms Control Association4/1/2019
Prospects for extending the New Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (New START) appeared to dim in March as U.S. and Russian officials threw cold water on the idea of a quick or easy extension process. The treaty capping deployed strategic nuclear weapons in both countries is due to expire in February 2021, but it could be extended for up to five years by mutual agreement.

U.S. Nuclear Policy

4 Things to Know About the U.S. Nuclear Deterrence Strategy
U.S. Department of Defense4/1/2019
Acting Defense Secretary Patrick M. Shanahan and Marine Corps Gen. Joe Dunford, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, testified at a House Armed Services Committee hearing. David Trachtenberg, deputy undersecretary of defense for policy, spoke before the HASC strategic forces subcommittee. The fiscal year 2020 budget request from President Donald J. Trump was the impetus for both hearings, but America’s nuclear defense strategy was clearly important to lawmakers on both days.

Opinion and Analysis

Perceptions of India’s Nuclear Capability Buildup: Ghost Hunting and a Reality Check
The DiplomatManpreet Sethi
Before India conducted its nuclear tests in 1998, its nuclear intentions were a matter of widespread speculation. Subsequent to the declaration of a doctrine (as a draft in 1999 and then through a press note on 2003) clearly spelling out attributes of its nuclear strategy, conjectures continue to be made on its capability trajectory. Will India stick to minimum deterrence?

Special Interest

Report – Nuclear Arms Control Without a Treaty? Risks and Options After New START
Center for Naval AnalysesVince Manzo
This report explores risks and US policy options for a specific scenario: The New Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (START) expires with no follow-on treaty in tow. We identify the key risks and uncertainties the United States and Russia would face after New START and develop a portfolio of policy options for mitigating them.

Event – Future of Arms Control
Center for Strategic and International StudiesTOMORROW – 4/3/2019
Arms control and the nonproliferation regime are being challenged on multiple fronts. U.S.-Russia bilateral cooperation on arms control stalled under the cloud of INF violations by Russia and withdrawal by the United States. Prospects for even simple extension of the New START Treaty appear grim. If New START expires in 2021 without extension or replacement the United States may find itself for the first time in over fifty years without any formal, treaty-based limits on strategic nuclear weapons capabilities. This uncertainty combined with nuclear modernization programs in U.S., Russia and China raise important questions about the future strategic stability, force modernization and arms control.

Please join PONI on April 3, 2019 for a half-day conference from 1-6pm to explore the future of arms control. The conference will be followed by a reception.

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