Final Declaration of the Supervisory Board of the International Luxembourg Forum "Ensuring Breakthrough In Nuclear Disarmament and Non-Proliferation".
Ensuring Breakthrough In Nuclear Disarmament and Non-Proliferation
DECLARATION of the Supervisory Board of the International Luxembourg Forum on Preventing Nuclear Catastrophe
December 7, 2016, London
The members of the Supervisory Board of the International Luxembourg Forum express their deep concern that the crisis of nuclear arms control continues to get worse.
This is happening against the background of massive violence and destruction taking place in Syria, where for the first time in many decades Russia and the United States openly conduct intensive combat operations without proper coordination or cooperation.
The implementation of the Minsk agreements on resolving theUkrainian crisis has been inconsistent and has been far from complete.
Russia and NATO continue arms build-up close to common borders and conduct military exercises of growing scale.
The INF Treaty of 1987, which historically provided a powerful start to a period of great achievement in nuclear disarmament and non-proliferation, is under growing threat due to unresolved US and Russian mutual accusations of non-compliance.
Although the New START Treaty is being implemented properly, continuity in strategic arms control dialogue has been lost for the first time in more than forty years, with a six year pause after the signing of the 2010 New START Treaty.
The positions of the two parties are as far apart as ever on ballistic missile defense development and deployment, the developing and testing of advanced long-range precision guided conventional systems, limitation of sub-strategic nuclear arms, non-weaponization of outer space, and conventional forces reduction and limitation in Europe.
Apart from the successful conclusion of the deal on the Iranian nuclear program of 2015, there was no further progress on enhancing the nuclear non-proliferation system and regimes. Moreover the 2015 NPT Review Conference ended in failure and in 2016 North Korea conducted two nuclear tests and test-launched ballistic missiles of expanding range.
The US-Russia agreement of 2000 on plutonium disposition has been suspended, as has been the program of scientific collaboration on nuclear energy, thus terminating the last vestiges of a quarter-century-long broad cooperation on safety and safe elimination of nuclear weapons and materials.
The deplorable reality is that none of these issues are presently receiving serious attention from decision makers and public opinion in either Russia or the West.
In an environment where there is not only protracted deadlock in arms control negotiations but a disturbing willingness to increase reliance on nuclear weapons to guarantee national security, one of the very few encouraging developments has been the international movement recognizing the catastrophic humanitarian consequences of any use of nuclear weapons, and the support by a large number of countries for serious multilateral negotiations aimed at ultimately achieving a nuclear weapons free world.
We recommend the following steps to be taken as early as possible:
- The Russian Federation and the United States and other NATO countries should agree on measures for preventing dangerous military accidents at sea and in the air which may provoke uncontrolled escalation of conflict. In particular these steps should include modernizing and enhancing the 1972 US-Soviet Agreement on the prevention of incidents on and over the high seas and the 1989 Agreement on the prevention of dangerous military activities. As a next step the parties should agree on substantial limitation of the scale of military exercises, separating them geographically and expanding confidence-building measures of the Vienna document and Open Skies Agreement.
- The INF and the New START Treaties should be preserved and strictly implemented by the United States and the Russian Federation. Existing controversies over INF Treaty compliance, which has largely a technical nature, should be resolved in a constructive way under the strong political guidance of both powers.
- The two parties should initiate without further delay the talks on a follow-on START Treaty with the goal of achieving substantial reductions of strategic nuclear arms, limitation of strategic conventional weapons, and agreeing on confidence-building measures to ensure that the deployment of defensive systems of both parties do not undermine strategic stability.
- The two parties should proceed with constructive dialogue aimed at forging mutual understanding of the crucial notion of strategic stability, which should integrate missile defense systems’ deployment, and development of long-range conventional systems, taking account of the prospects of further proliferation of nuclear weapons, ballistic, cruise and hypersonic missiles, as well as of antimissile systems in the world.
- The parties to the agreement achieved in 2015 in the P5+1 negotiations with Iran on its nuclear program should do everything possible to achieve the proper implementation of this agreement by all sides. Constructive dialogue should be maintained by the parties to ensure that Iran remains a non-nuclear weapons state and does not resume any controversial nuclear program after the expiration of the terms of the Joint Comprehensive Action Plan.
- The UN Security Council Resolutions 2270 and 2321on the sanctions applied to North Korea must be strictly implemented by all parties.The dialogue on North-Korean nuclear arms and missiles programs should be resumed without delay in a workable format with the goal of preventing further nuclear and long-range missile tests by PDRK as the first phase of the long-term process aimed at denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula.
- Restoring global consensus that nuclear war must never be fought and can never be won must be a high priority. In that context, the nuclear armed states and their allies should reconsider their total opposition to any process of multilateral negotiations aimed at achieving ultimately a nuclear weapons free world. Reaching a complete ban on possession will necessarily be a complex and protracted process, but there is no obvious reason why such a negotiating process should not commence now. A realistic road map might start with a Convention banning any first use of nuclear weapons
We hope that the advent of a new US administration and the Russian response to it will present an opportunity for improved dialogue and consequent US-Russian steps aimed at protecting the nuclear arms control system and regimes. It may also lead to further progress in nuclear disarmament and non-proliferation.
We call on the leaders of the United States and Russia to apply all necessary efforts to overcome the current crisis in nuclear arms control and achieve real progress in the near future.
The participants of the Supervisory Board of the Luxembourg Forum meeting:
President of the International Luxembourg Forum on Preventing Nuclear Catastrophe, Ph.D. (Russia).
Deputy Chairman of the Organizing Committee of the International Luxembourg Forum; Head of the Center for International Security, Primakov National Research Institute of World Economy and International Relations, Russian Academy of Sciences (IMEMO RAS); Academician (RAS, Russia).
Ambassador, Member of the Supervisory Board of the InternationalLuxembourg Forum (Sweden).
Vice Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Nuclear Threat Initiative, Chairman of the Board of Trustees and Directors of the European Leadership Network, Member of the Supervisory Board of the International Luxembourg Forum, Lord Browne of Ladyton (Great Britain).
President of Pugwash Conferences on Science and World Affair, Ambassador, Member of the Supervisory Board of the InternationalLuxembourg Forum(Sri Lanka).
Chairman of the Organizing Committee of theInternational Luxembourg Forum; Principal Researcher of the Primakov National Research Institute of World Economy and International Relations (IMEMO RAS); Professor; Major General, ret. (Russia).
Ambassador, Member of the Supervisory Board of the International Luxembourg Forum(Sweden).
Chancellor of the Australian National University, Member of the Supervisory Board of the International Luxembourg Forum(Australia).
President of the Russian International Affairs Council; Professor of MGIMO (University), Ministry of the Foreign Affairs of Russia; Corresponding member RAS (Russia).
Member of the Council of Federation of the Federal Council of Russia (Russian Senate), President of the Russian Paralympic Committee, Member of the Supervisory Board of the InternationalLuxembourg Forum, Professor of the National Research University – Higher School of Economics (Russia).
Deputy Chairman of the Organizing Committee of theInternational Luxembourg Forum; Head of the Division IMEMO RAS; Professor ofMGIMO (University), Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Russia (Russia).
Distinguished University Professor University of Maryland, Member of the Supervisory Board of the International Luxembourg Forum, Director Emeritus of the Russian Space Research Institute, Academician (RAS, Russia/ United States).