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Policy brief | 27 June 2017

Open Letter to President Donald Trump and President Vladimir Putin

Image of Des Browne

Des Browne |Chair of the ELN, Vice Chairman of the NTI, Convener of the TLG and former UK Defence Secretary

Image of Sam Nunn

Sam Nunn |Co-Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Nuclear Threat Initiative; Former United States Senator

Diplomacy Foreign policy Russia Russia-West Relations United States Euro-Atlantic Security

In an open letter published on Tuesday 27 June, ELN Chairman and former British Defence Secretary Des Browne, Chairman of the Munich Security Conference, Wolfgang Ischinger, former Russian Foreign Minister Igor Ivanov, and former US Senator Sam Nunn call on Presidents Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin to use the July 7-8 G20 meeting in Hamburg to work together to reduce nuclear risks and other military risks and prevent catastrophic terrorist attacks.

This will be the first meeting between Presidents Trump and Putin. In their open letter, Browne, Ischinger, Ivanov and Nunn argue that this will be a unique opportunity to underscore that, despite differences, the United States, Russia and Europe can and must work to address these common threats.

Specific recommendations include:

  • A new Presidential Joint Declaration declaring that a nuclear war cannot be won and must never be fought;
  • A new NATO-Russia Military Crisis Management Group;
  • A new joint initiative to prevent terrorists from acquiring weapons of mass destruction; and
  • Discussions on cyber dangers related to strategic warning systems and nuclear command and control.

The letter has been publicly released in Moscow, European capitals and Washington.