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Multilateral arms control, disarmament and non-proliferation

We aim to bolster the multilateral non-proliferation and disarmament regimes, particularly the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty. We provide ideas, analysis and research resources that support the efforts of serving diplomats in the NPT process. We also focus on specific regional challenges to the multilateral non-proliferation and disarmament system, including the future of nuclear diplomacy with Iran, and (in partnership with our sister Asia-Pacific Leadership Network) understanding Indo-Pacific perspectives on strategic risks. The ELN’s work has supported the P5 Dialogue, with a view to encouraging the NPT nuclear weapon states to engage jointly in strategic risk reduction. We also work to support the CTBT and encourage its entry into force and want to deepen the understanding of the concept of irreversibility in nuclear disarmament.

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Latest Publications

Commentary

Russia’s full-scale invasion of Ukraine continues to threaten the nuclear order’s grand bargain

On the second anniversary of Putin’s war in Ukraine, Olamide Samuel writes that the invasion has upset the fragile balance of obligations in the NPT’s bargain by dramatically increasing the perceived salience of nuclear weapons and reigniting motivations for proliferation. In response, nuclear weapon states choosing to reinforce their extended deterrence commitments inadvertently devalues the wider framework of security assurances granted to non-nuclear weapon states and the perceived value of the NPT’s grand bargain.

27 February 2024 | Olamide Samuel
Commentary

The NPT needs a common understanding of “nuclear threats”: Questions and tasks for the 11th NPT Review Cycle

YGLN members Maren Vieluf and Ananya Agustin Malhotra argue that NPT states need to start talking about whether or not “defensive” and “offensive” nuclear threats can be distinguished. If NPT states can find agreement on this matter, it could bridge the gap between states condemning any and all nuclear threats under any circumstances and those states that stand firmly behind “defensive” nuclear threats and allow for further progress to be made in the 11th NPT Review Cycle.

15 February 2024 | Maren Vieluf and Ananya Agustin Malhotra
Commentary

Why and how the NPT must prepare for an arms control interregnum in the post-New START era

The defining challenge of the arms control interregnum is to ensure the NPT survives Russian brinkmanship and Chinese ambivalence, writes Maximilian Hoell. He argues that supporters of the NPT must face a simple choice: join forces to uphold the treaty to the extent possible and prevent its erosion or risk the treaty’s collapse. He argues that Western leadership is essential for safeguarding the NPT in the new security environment.

8 February 2024 | Maximilian Hoell
Commentary

Nuclear disarmament verification and the NPT: De-politicising the political

In our latest commentary from the ELN’s New European Voices on Existential Risk (NEVER) network, Kim Westerich-Fellner explores how focusing on technical issues such as nuclear arms verification, can be used as a means of sidestepping the political disputes between States Parties that have more often than not inhibited progress and cooperation within the structures of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT).

9 January 2024 | Kim Westerich-Fellner

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