(Washington, D.C.) For the first time in 15 months the P5+1 (China, France, Germany, Russia, the United Kingdom, and the United States) will hold talks with Iran on its nuclear program in Istanbul April 14. The meeting is expected to be the beginning of a series of talks rather than a single session over the weekend. The talks are likely to focus on Iran's enrichment to 20% as a confidence-building step toward broader progress on resolving the nuclear issue.
North Korea announced on March 16 that it will launch a satellite in mid-April, a move that threatens to unravel a Feb. 29 agreement the country made with the United States to halt key nuclear and missile activities. North Korea says it is carrying out the launch between April 12 and 16 to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the birth of the country’s founder, Kim Il Sung, on April 15.
Iran carried out its second successful satellite launch, demonstrating greater experience with rocket technologies that also could benefit its missile programs.
The Pakistani military claimed on April 19 to have successfully tested a 60 kilometer-range nuclear-capable ballistic missile, a move that might indicate
The Pentagon will continue to explore a concept called "boost-glide" for its Conventional Prompt Global Strike mission, rather than pursuing systems based on traditional ballistic missiles, a White House report says.
Russian leaders remain committed to the Bulava RSM-56 submarine-launched ballistic missile (SLBM) despite a number of high-profile test failures, a top military official said Aug. 26.
North Korea has recently taken a series of provocative steps to challenge the international community. These steps include test-launching a long-range rocket, walking away from the six-party talks and all disarmament agreements, kicking out international inspectors from its nuclear facilities, conducting an underground nuclear test May 25-a more powerful blast than the one conducted in 2006-testing a half-dozen short-range missiles, and announcing it had resumed plutonium production and started a program to enrich uranium. Pyongyang reportedly also is preparing a long-range missile test and a third nuclear test. If unchecked, North Korea will surely increase the quantity and quality of its arsenal. Even worse, once Pyongyang has more than enough weapons for its deterrent, it might be tempted to sell the surplus. The longer the crisis lasts, the more nuclear capable North Korea will become and the more difficult it will be to roll back Pyongyang's nuclear ambitions. (Continue)
Iran carried out its first successful flight test of a two-stage solid-fuel ballistic missile May 20, demonstrating increasing sophistication with its medium-range ballistic missiles (MRBMs), U.S. officials and technical experts said.
Iranian Defense Minister Mostafa Mohammad Najjar said just after the test that Iran would begin mass-producing the missile, called the Sajjil-2, that same day. (Continue)
North Korea's long anticipated rocket launch April 5 set off a chain of events resulting in international sanctions on North Korean firms and Pyongyang's withdrawal from six-way talks to end its nuclear weapons program.
North Korea, which warned that any UN response would provoke a hostile reaction, insisted that it is no longer bound by multilateral agreements reached with the United States and countries in the region and stated its intention to reconstitute the nuclear facilities that it temporarily disabled under those accords. In an April 25 Foreign Ministry statement, Pyongyang declared that it had begun separating plutonium to enhance its "nuclear deterrence." (Continue)