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"The Arms Control Association’s work is an important resource to legislators and policymakers when contemplating a new policy direction or decision."

– General John Shalikashvili
former Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff
Arms Control NOW

Fifty Years Ago, the First Strategic Arms Limitation Talks Began

Fifty years ago, on Nov. 17, 1969, the United States and the Soviet Union launched the first-ever Strategic Arms Limitation Talks (SALT) in Helsinki, Finland. The chief American negotiator was Gerard Smith, who had been appointed the director of the U.S. Arms Control and Disarmament Agency by then-president Richard Nixon. Smith’s opening message that day: “The limitation of strategic arms is in the mutual interests of our country and the Soviet Union.” Negotiated in the midst of severe tensions, the SALT agreement and the Anti-Ballistic Missile (ABM) Treaty were the first restrictions on the...

U.S.-Russian Nuclear Arms Control Watch, Nov. 15, 2019

Moscow Expresses Frustration About U.S. Stance on New START Top Russian Foreign Ministry officials have issued a fresh set of warnings about the future of the New Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (New START) because, they say, the Trump administration continues to refuse to engage in talks on extending the treaty. Washington “is evading any serious discussion, making public discouraging signals regarding the future of this treaty,” said Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov Nov. 8 at a nonproliferation conference in Moscow. Lavrov’s deputy, Sergey Ryabkov, voiced similar criticisms at the...

New IAEA Report Details Iran’s Retaliatory Moves | The P4+1 and Iran Nuclear Deal Alert EXTRA

The Nov. 11 report by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) on Iran’s implementation of the landmark 2015 nuclear deal confirms that Tehran resumed enrichment at its Fordow site under agency monitoring and is accelerating its production of low-enriched uranium. Iran’s frustration with the reimposition of U.S. sanctions in violation of the deal is understandable, but its most recent breach at Fordow is a very serious escalation that increases the risk that the nuclear agreement will collapse. Like Iran’s three prior breaches of the 2015 nuclear deal, known as the Joint Comprehensive...

Select Statements of Support for New START

The New Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty ( New START ), which entered into force in 2011, will expire on February 5, 2021, unless the U.S. and Russian presidents decide to extend the treaty by up to five years. New START is the latest in a series of agreements negotiated by Republican and Democratic presidents that verifiably limit and reduce the U.S. and Russian strategic nuclear arsenals. Under the treaty’s terms, the U.S. and Russian strategic nuclear arsenals are limited to 1,550 deployed strategic nuclear warheads; 700 deployed intercontinental ballistic missiles (ICBMs), submarine-...

Iran Announces New Nuclear Violation | The P4+1 and Iran Nuclear Deal Alert

Iran Announces New Nuclear Violation President Hassan Rouhani directed the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran (AEOI) to introduce uranium gas into centrifuges installed at the Fordow facility on Nov. 6, violating the prohibition on enrichment activities at the site put in place by the 2015 nuclear deal. Iran’s decision to begin enriching uranium at Fordow under international supervision is a serious breach of the nuclear agreement, known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA). While the step does not pose a near-term proliferation threat, it risks eroding European support and...

Our Place in the Universe and Nuclear Weapons: Reflections from a Nuclear Arms Control Negotiator

EDITOR’S NOTE: Amb. Roland Timerbaev passed away in mid-August at the age of 91. Timerbaev was a member of the Soviet/Russian diplomatic service for 43 years, with his final posting as permanent representative of the Soviet Union/Russia to international organizations in Vienna from 1988 to 1992. He also participated in negotiations on the 1972 Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty, the 1973 Agreement on the Prevention of Nuclear War, the 1974 Treaty on the Limitation of Underground Nuclear Weapon Tests, and the 1976 Peaceful Nuclear Explosions Treaty. Timerbaev was one of the central figures in the...

U.S.-Russian Nuclear Arms Control Watch, Oct. 17, 2019

Trump Poised to Withdraw from Open Skies Treaty The Trump administration is reportedly on the verge of withdrawing from the 1992 Open Skies Treaty , according to lawmakers and media reports. Rep. Eliot Engel (D-N.Y.), chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, first sounded the public alarm in an Oct. 7 letter to National Security Advisor Robert C. O’Brien. “I am deeply concerned by reports that the Trump Administration is considering withdrawing from the Open Skies Treaty and strongly urge you against such a reckless action,” Rep. Engel wrote. “American withdrawal would only benefit...

North Korea Rejects U.S. Proposal | North Korea Denuclearization Digest, October 10, 2019

North Korea Rejects U.S. Proposal U.S. and North Korean negotiators met for the first time in seven months Oct. 4-5 to continue talks on denuclearization and peacebuilding on the Korean peninsula, but the prospects for further negotiations remain unclear as Pyongyang continues to reiterate that the Trump administration must change its position for the process to continue. The State Department characterized the talks in Stockholm as “good” and said the U.S. negotiating team brought new proposals to the table to address all of the goals laid out in the June 2018 Singapore summit declaration ...

Countries Urge Entry into Force of Nuclear Test Ban at UNGA

In the midst of this year’s United Nations General Assembly meeting in New York City on Sept. 25, ministers of foreign affairs and diplomats representing nearly 50 countries spoke at a biannual conference in favor of entry into force of the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty (CTBT) signed by 184 countries. Signed in 1996, the CTBT prohibits “any nuclear weapon test explosion or any nuclear explosion” no matter what the yield, anywhere in the world. According to Article XIV of the treaty, the agreement cannot enter into force until it has been both signed and ratified by the 44 countries listed in...

French Proposal on Hold as Tensions Mount | P4+1 and Iran Nuclear Deal Alert, September 24, 2019

French Proposal on Hold as Tensions Mount The latest attempt by European powers to salvage the 2015 Iran nuclear deal hit a roadblock this month when the Trump Administration hesitated to engage in a French-sponsored initiative. In August, French President Emmanuel Macron offered a proposal before world leaders at the G-7 summit in Biarritz, France for a $15 billion line of credit to Tehran in exchange for its full compliance with the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA). According to the plan, the $15 billion credit line would be guaranteed by Iranian oil and would help compensate...

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