Tim Wright er NWC (Nuclear Weapons Convention) Prosjekt koordinator og kommer med oppsummeringer fra FN's tilsynskonferanse i New York mellom 3.5 til 28.5. Disse referatene vil oppdateres fortløpende

Rapport fra tilsynskonferansen kan lastes ned her

30.05 - Aspiring to Abolish Nuclear Weapons

On Friday, the 189 parties to the NPT adopted by consensus a final document, which includes an action plan on nuclear disarmament. The International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons (ICAN) welcomed the re-affirmation by the nuclear-weapon states of their “unequivocal undertaking” to disarm, but expressed disappointment that many of the disarmament “actions” are phrased more as aspirational goals than firm time-bound commitments. In the second half of the conference, the Non-Aligned Movement had proposed more than 200 amendments to the original draft document, mostly aimed at attaching timelines to disarmament undertakings. However, they were largely unsuccessful in doing so. A number of them stated their regret on Friday that it had not been possible to broker a stronger agreement. It appears that the nuclear-weapon states still consider nuclear abolition to be a far-off vision, not a near-term objective. Many countries have vowed to keep up the pressure on the nuclear-weapon states to make meaningful progress in eliminating their nuclear arsenals over the next few years. The Non-Aligned Movement, for example, said after the final document was adopted that it would “vigorously pursue” as one of its key priorities the prompt commencement of negotiations on a Nuclear Weapons Convention “as the route to realizing a world free from nuclear weapons by the year 2025”. Historical first The final document is the first to refer to a Nuclear Weapons Convention — not once, but twice — but it falls well short of calling for negotiations to begin now on such a treaty, as is supported by a majority of governments each year in the UN General Assembly. Nevertheless, the inclusion of references to a convention in the text — for which many governments fought very hard — provides civil society with a useful foundation for continuing to build the pressure to begin negotiations. Dr. Rebecca Johnson, vice-chair of ICAN, told media: “The action plan on nuclear disarmament as well as the inability of the NPT machinery to deal with non-compliance and to strengthen its own safeguards agreements, as illustrated in what was left out of the final document, make it now clear to everyone the need to initiate a process leading to negotiations on a Nuclear Weapons Convention that will do away with the NPT distinction between nuclear haves and have-nots and comprehensively ban nuclear weapons for all.” A new approach We are pleased that the need for a comprehensive nuclear abolition treaty was a central element of the debate at this Review Conference, with a large majority of governments prepared to put their weight behind the idea. Forty years after the entry into force of the NPT, there is a high degree of dissatisfaction with the lack of progress in achieving a nuclear-weapon-free world. Non-nuclear-weapon states are looking for a new approach. A Nuclear Weapons Convention, rather than “derailing” the disarmament process (as some have claimed), will put us on track — for the first time — to nuclear abolition. The next few years will be crucial in building momentum towards that goal. We must not let down our guard, and hope that all will be well, simply because governments were able to agree on an outcome document at this Review Conference. It should provide the impetus for real action, not an excuse for inaction. ICAN will circulate a full report from the Review Conference shortly.

28.05 - Disarmament “Inaction” Plan?

This evening a revised version of the draft final document for the NPT Review Conference was released, with governments expected to vote on it tomorrow morning. The afternoon session is reserved for platitudes. The United States, Russia, the United Kingdom and France have been largely successful in removing from the document anything requiring them to take meaningful short-term steps to advance disarmament. Many of the disarmament “actions” are now phrased as vague aspirations. Report on Article VI Under the draft document, the Review Conference “notes with concern that the total estimated number of nuclear weapons deployed and stockpiled still amounts to several thousands”, and “expresses its deep concern at the continued risk for humanity represented by the possibility that these weapons could be used and the catastrophic humanitarian consequences that would result from the use of nuclear weapons”. If adopted, it would be the first time for a review conference to affirm “that the final phase of the nuclear disarmament process and other related measures should be pursued within an agreed legal framework, which a majority of States parties believe should include specified timelines”. This is a welcome inclusion, although there is no reason why the development of such a framework — in the form of a convention — should not begin now. It is disappointing that the P5 were unable to accept the need for timelines. Disarmament plan * Unequivocal undertaking: Under the “action-focused” section of the draft document, the conference resolves “to seek a safer world for all and to achieve the peace and security of a world without nuclear weapons”, and reaffirms “the unequivocal undertaking of the nuclear-weapon states to accomplish the total elimination of their nuclear arsenals leading to nuclear disarmament”. Such an undertaking was made in 2000 — but it turned out to be quite equivocal. * Undiminished security: The document states that “significant steps” leading to nuclear disarmament should promote international stability and be “based on the principle of increased and undiminished security for all”. This in effect places conditions on nuclear disarmament — for example, reductions in conventional forces by certain states and the resolution of regional conflicts. * Humanitarian law: One of the more positive aspects of the document — but not an “action” as such — is the affirmation by all states of the need to comply with “applicable international law, including international humanitarian law”, at all times. This is a slight rewording of the original draft text, which now seems to leave open the possibility that international humanitarian law may not, in all circumstances, apply to the use of nuclear weapons. * Framework for abolition: The conference encourages in particular those states with the largest nuclear arsenals — the United States and Russia — to lead efforts to reduce and eliminate all types of nuclear weapons. It calls on all nuclear-weapon states to “undertake concrete disarmament efforts”