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"I want to thank the Arms Control Association … for being such effective advocates for sensible policies to stem the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction, and most importantly, reduce the risk of nuclear war."

– Joseph Biden, Jr.
Senator
January 28, 2004
Arms Control Now Blog

Iran Nuclear Talks Head to Sixth Round

The fifth round of talks on restoring U.S. and Iranian compliance with the 2015 nuclear deal wrapped up June 2. Negotiators appear optimistic about the prospects for success while acknowledging that some issues remain unresolved. Iran’s Deputy Foreign Minister and lead negotiator Abas Araghchi said that the next round of talks, slated to begin June 10, “logically could and should be the final round.” He told the press June 2 that the remaining differences are “not unresolvable.” Enrique Mora, the EU official coordinating the indirect talks between the United States and Iran, was similarly...

Biden and Moon Discuss North Korea

U.S. President Joe Biden and South Korean President Moon Jae-in agreed to terminate U.S.-South Korea missile guidelines that capped Seoul’s missile development and announced the appointment of a career diplomat, Sung Kim, as the U.S. Special Envoy for North Korea. While Biden did not provide new details about the results of his administration’s policy review toward North Korea, the two leaders reiterated the need for a calibrated, phased approach toward denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula, and stressed the importance of using dialogue and diplomacy toward North Korea in the news...

Russia Puts Open Skies Withdrawal Process Into Motion

Russia Puts Open Skies Withdrawal Process Into Motion Russia formally started the process for withdrawing from the 1992 Open Skies Treaty in May, further dampening prospects for the embattled agreement. Russian President Vladimir Putin submitted to the State Duma May 11 a bill to withdraw Russia from the treaty. With the U.S. withdrawal from the accord last year, “serious damage was inflicted upon treaty compliance and its role in promoting confidence building measures and strengthening transparency,” the bill reads . “A threat to the national security of the Russian Federation has emerged.”...

Two States Ratify the CTBT

Cuba presented its instrument of ratification of the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty (CTBT) on Feb. 4, becoming the 169th state to ratify the pact. Two weeks later, Comoros on Feb. 19 became the 170th state to deposit its instrument of ratification with the UN secretary-general in New York. At the same time, the Indian Ocean nation deposited its instrument of ratification for the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons. “The fight against the proliferation of nuclear weapons is everyone’s concern,” Comorian Foreign Minister Dhoihir Dhoulkamal said at a virtual meeting of the Preparatory...

Iran, US Remain Deadlocked on Nuclear Deal

Iran is “in no rush” to return to the 2015 nuclear deal, known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei said March 21 , as the United States and Iran remain deadlocked over the sequence of steps to restore the accord. While neither side wants to make the first move, Washington and Tehran appear to be exchanging views on the JCPOA indirectly. National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan told reporters March 12 that “communications through the Europeans” enable the United States to “explain to the Iranians what our position is with respect to the...

U.S., Russia Signal Willingness to Hold Arms Control Talks

Since securing the extension of the 2010 New Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty ( New START ) in February, the United States and Russia have both signaled a willingness to hold a dialogue on arms control as part of a broader conversation on strategic stability, though when exactly such discussions may take place remains unclear. “The United States is ready to engage Russia in strategic stability discussions on arms control and emerging security issues,” said U.S. Secretary of State Tony Blinken at the Conference on Disarmament (CD) on Feb. 22. The Biden administration released interim national...

Bayard Rustin, Britain’s Nuclear Weapons, and the Global Struggle for Peace and Justice

This week, the British government announced that it would reverse decades of progress to reduce its lethal arsenal of nuclear weapons and raise the ceiling for warheads on its fleet of submarine-based ballistic missiles. The reaction from Scotland, where Britain’s weapons are based, and elsewhere was swift and harsh. Scottish National Party defence spokesman Stewart McDonald said: "It speaks volumes of the Tory government's spending priorities that it is intent on increasing its collection of weapons of mass destruction - which will sit and gather dust unless the UK has plans to...

E3 Put JCPOA at Risk, Luckily Cooler Heads in Vienna Prevailed

An exercise of restraint at the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA)’s Board of Governors meeting may have preserved the space for diplomatic efforts to save the 2015 nuclear deal with Iran, in part due to efforts by the United States and others to sway Britain, France, and Germany from pursuing a gratuitous resolution censuring Tehran. The resolution risked jeopardizing the IAEA’s access to monitor Iran’s nuclear activities, as well as the already uncertain path toward restoration of the accord. The European members of the deal circulated a draft resolution ahead of the quarterly IAEA...

U.S., Russia Extend New START for Five Years

With only days remaining until its expiration, the United States and Russia officially sealed an extension of the 2010 New Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty ( New START ) for an additional five years, keeping in place the treaty’s verifiable limits on the deployed strategic nuclear arsenals of the world’s two largest nuclear powers. The U.S. Department of State and the Russian Foreign Ministry issued separate statements Feb. 3 announcing that the formal exchange of documents on the extension had been completed. Biden administration officials stressed that the extension would buy time and space...

Biden Officials Express Support for Rejoining Iran Nuclear Deal

Biden Officials Express Support for Rejoining Iran Nuclear Deal Biden administration officials continue to voice support for returning the United States to the 2015 nuclear deal, known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), but caution that restoring full implementation of the agreement may take time. Secretary of State Antony Blinken emphasized the Biden administration’s commitment “to the proposition that Iran will not acquire a nuclear weapon,” during his Jan. 19 confirmation hearing with the Senate Foreign Relations Committee. He said that the United States intends to rejoin...

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