Final Document of the Conference of the International Luxembourg Forum on Preventing of Nuclear Catastrophe
of the Conference of the International Luxembourg Forum on
Preventing Nuclear Catastrophe
“Perspectives of Nuclear Proliferation and Disarmament”
(September 11-12, 2012, Geneva)
The members of the International Advisory Council of the International Luxembourg Forum express their gratitude to the Geneva Center for Security Policy for its cooperation in holding a joint session on Perspectives of Nuclear Proliferation and Disarmament, in Geneva on September 11-12, 2012.
The members of the International Advisory Council of the International Luxembourg Forum express their concern over the present state of nuclear disarmament and non-proliferation. After the positive achievements of 2010-2011, particularly the entry into force of the New START Treaty, the dialogue on strategic arms control has not made further progress. Negotiations on other issues of arms control and disarmament have been deadlocked. There is no progress on the key issues of nuclear and missile non-proliferation, foremost on the resolution of the Iranian and North Korean nuclear and missile crises. Moreover, disagreements within the UN Security Council on these two issues, as well as on the Syrian civil war and other crucial issues have become deeper.
Participants of the Conference believe that urgent steps on the part of the great powers and other leading states as well as international organizations are needed to achieve a break-through and to reverse current negative developments in the process of nuclear disarmament and non-proliferation.
The Conference of the Luxembourg Forum expresses its concerns about the following:
1. The process of implementation of the New START Treaty is going on as planned and up to now has not provided any reason for concern. However modest the actual reductions of strategic arms may be, the Treaty has prevented the break-up of the strategic arms control process and preserved the transparency and predictability of the strategic relationship between Russia and the United States.
However, in the United States and Russia the meaning and binding nature of the Preamble paragraph of the Treaty on the relationship of strategic offensive and defensive systems are interpreted in very different ways.
2. What is worse, there is deep division between the parties on the scale, nature, capabilities and mission of the US/NATO European Phased Adoptive Approach (EPAA) to ballistic missile defense development and deployment. Russia still considers the EPAA a potential threat to its strategic nuclear deterrent capability, to strategic stability and to the future of nuclear arms control. Accordingly, Russia is warning the West about its possible military and political countermeasures. Meanwhile Russia is building up its own defensive capability (“Air-Space Defense”), which is openly designed to counter US offensive systems.
In NATO, the EPAA is justified as an indispensable and legitimate response to the growing missile threat posed by Iran and other potential rogue regimes. The Russian reaction is considered excessive and non-constructive.
For the first time after the end of the Cold War the possibility has emerged of a new offensive-defensive arms race.
3. The development and deployment of ballistic missile defenses by the US and its Asian Pacific allies has provoked profound, albeit less vocal, concern by China, which is responding with its own offensive and defensive countermeasures. The offensive/defensive arms race between Russia and NATO may be supplemented and exacerbated by an arms race between China and American alliances in the Pacific.
4. The priority that US/NATO give to an agreement on the reduction and limitation of non-strategic nuclear weapons and nuclear weapons in storage as a precondition for any follow-on START Treaty is flatly rejected by Russia.
5. Two other crucial agreements are in a state of stagnation. There is not much hope of Comprehensive Nuclear Test-Ban Treaty (CTBT) entry into force in the nearest future or much further progress towards Fissile Material Cut-off Treaty (FMCT).
6. There are no signs of any movement towards preventing weaponization of outer space. The testing of sub-orbital and orbital weapon systems goes on. There is a risk of arms race in space, which would undermine strategic stability and arms control.
7. The regime of conventional arms control in Europe, principally the Treaty on Conventional Armed Forces in Europe (CFE) seems beyond repair. At the same time there is no framework or negotiation to replace CFE with a new regime.
8. Despite all the resolutions of the UN Security Council (UNSC), as well as sanctions and diplomatic efforts of the states negotiating with Iran, that country’s work on sensitive areas of the nuclear fuel cycle continues to expand. The developments in its enrichment program in particular are bringing Iran closer to a nuclear weapons capability as each day passes.
Tensions in the area have increased given threats coming from high-level Iranian sources about closing the Hormuz Strait, the buildup of US military forces in the region and debate in Israel and elsewhere about potential military action against Iran.
The threat of a new war in the Persian Gulf area in the near future is increasingly acute. Such a war would bring dire consequences.
9. North Korea’s persistent development of nuclear and missile capabilities is a main reason for continuing tensions in the Far East. This region has also recently seen a growing military build-up by China and the US and its allies, as well as territorial disputes in the South China Sea.
Diplomatic efforts to resolve these problems continue, but these tensions hinder prospects for nuclear disarmament and non-proliferation.
The Conference of the Luxembourg Forum recommends:
1. The United States and Russia should proceed without further delay with the next phase of START negotiations without preconditions. The goal of an immediate follow-on START Treaty should be the reduction and limitation of operationally deployed strategic offensive arms (nuclear and conventional) down to a level of no more than 1000 warheads.
2. A new search for compromise on ballistic missile defenses should begin with a US/NATO-Russian discussion to craft a new understanding of the concept of strategic stability and the ways of incorporating US-led ballistic missile defense (BMD) programs as well as Russia’s Air-Space Defense. In particular, there should be agreement on criteria for stable strategic and theater defenses. In parallel, multilateral consultations with China, India, and concerned states in the Middle East should be initiated on this subject.
Such a new understanding should provide the basis for appropriate confidence-building and transparency agreements between US/NATO and Russia as well as possible agreements with other concerned states. This understanding should also provide the framework for possible BMD cooperative projects.
Any formal linkage of this new approach to BMD issues with START negotiations might be counterproductive. But there is no doubt that politically, such BMD agreements would facilitate a follow-on START Treaty.
Eventually such agreements would enhance possibilities for nuclear arms limitations of other nuclear weapons states besides US and Russia.
3. In parallel to new START and BMD negotiations but without formal linkage, consultations on non-strategic (tactical) nuclear weapons should begin. They should start with agreeing on definitions of the subject of the talks. The process would befacilitated by agreements on transparency, starting with an exchange of information on the implementation of the 1991-1992 unilateral initiatives on tactical nuclear weapons (TNW). On this basis various options for the limitation of non-strategic nuclear arms should be discussed, including their reallocation to centralized storages on the national territories of the states owning them.
4. Additionally, negotiations on the revival of conventional arms control in Europe should begin, adapted to new European geostrategic realities.
5. The above four negotiating tracks would provide a far broader space for diplomatic trade-offs and balanced compromises.
6. In order to promote Iranian acceptance of the UN Security Council mandates with regard to those aspects of its nuclear program which are a matter of concern, states should consider national measures that would reinforce the economic steps taken by the European Union. States that import Iranian oil have a particular leverage in this regard. Current diplomatic efforts will need to be supplemented by additional incentives and disincentives to encourage Iran to comply with its obligations and to stop moving closer to a nuclear weapons capability. New sanctions against Iran are not a precursor to a new war in the Persian Gulf zone, but are designed to prevent such war.
7. The current Syrian crisis is likely to affect both the Iranian nuclear issue and the prospects for a Conference in 2012 on a weapons of mass destruction (WMD) free-zone in the Middle East. The UNSC should undertake more energetic and coordinated efforts to end violence and massive civilian fatalities and allow introducing peace-keeping and peace-building efforts and providing humanitarian aid. Special concern should be given to absolutely preventing terrorists from gaining access to Syrian chemical weapons stockpile.
8. Additional economic, political and security incentives should be presented to encourage the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) to change its present course. China should be encouraged to persuade the DPRK to cease its threatening posture.
Achieving progress on broader issues, foremost the US-China-Russia dialogue on strategic stability, may facilitate a more active policy by China.
The final goal is to bring the DPRK back to the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT) as a non-nuclear weapon state.
9. The United States, Russia and China together with other concerned states should actively promote the establishment of Asia-Pacific organizations and regimes of multilateral security and cooperation. Attention should be given to processes of peaceful settlement of territorial disputes in the Asia Pacific region, including arbitration and mediation.
Members of the Supervisory and Advisory Councils of the International Luxembourg Forum
President of the International Luxembourg Forum on Preventing Nuclear Catastrophe; President of the European Jewish Congress; Ph.D. (Russia).
Head of the Center for International Security of the Institute for World Economy and International Relations (IMEMO), Russian Academy of Sciences (RAS); Scholar-in-Residence of the Carnegie Moscow Center (former Deputy Chairman of the Defense Committee of the State Duma, Federal Assembly – Russian Parliament); Academician RAS (Russia).
Ambassador (former Director General of the International Atomic Energy Agency); Ph.D. (Sweden).
Professor of Theoretical Physics of the Department of Physics, University of Rome "La Sapienza" (former Secretary General of Pugwash Conferences on Science and World Affairs, Italy).
Head of the Organizing Committee, International Luxembourg Forum; Principal Researcher of the IMEMO, RAS; Professor; Major-General, ret. (Russia).
Leading Researcher of the Institute for U.S. and Canadian Studies, RAS (former Chief of Armed Service Staff – First Deputy Commander-In-Chief, Strategic Rocket Forces); General-Colonel, ret. (Russia).
Director of the Non-proliferation and Disarmament Programme, International Institute for Strategic Studies in London (United States).
General of the Army (former Director of the General Staff Academy of the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation, Commander-in-Chief of the Strategic Rocket Forces, Russia).
College Park Professor, School of Public Policy, University of Maryland (United States).
Director of the Institute for Strategic Assessments; Professor of the MGIMO (former Chief of the Organizational Analytic Division, RAS); Ph.D.; Full Member of the Russian Academy of Cosmonautics (Russia).
Distinguished University Professor, Department of Physics at the University of Maryland; Director Emeritus of the Russian Space Research Institute; Academician RAS (Russia/USA).