News

Dec 22 2011, 8:35 PM

After an intense two weeks of negotiations in Durban, the seventeenth UN climate change conference came to a dramatic close on the 11th of December. The quantity of decisions and reports produced is a clear indication of the intimidating workload which kept delegates negotiating in to the final moments of a two-day extension. With the conference outcomes in hand, the final blog post of 2011 will wrap up this year’s coverage of climate change negotiations by reflecting on issues raised by previous posts. 

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Dec 22 2011, 3:53 PM
In this issue David Cliff addresses verification options for a Weapons of Mass Destruction-Free Zone in the Middle East and assesses the importance of the CTBT for regional and global security. Plus: Verification Watch, Science & Technology Scan, Verification Quotes and Programme News (with a special feature looking back over VERTIC’s 25th anniversary year). This issue also includes some end-of-year reflections by VERTIC’s Executive Director Andreas Persbo, and a past VERTIC director, Trevor Findlay, remembers former VERTIC Board member Susan Willett, who passed away earlier this year.
 
Read the full issue here.
 
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Dec 19 2011, 12:44 PM

On 8 December 2011, Andreas Persbo traveled to Vienna, Austria, to deliver a talk on the interface between science and diplomacy to the CTBTO Advance Science Course on Science and Diplomacy. A write-up from the CTBTO is available on its website.

Mr. Persbo's presentation is available here (PDF, 356 KB).

 

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Dec 15 2011, 8:37 PM
This year's Wilton Park Conference on the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty is now officially over. All that remains is the carol service and the formal dinner. Yesterday, I had the opportunity to chair a break-out group on verification and today, my rapporteur, Ms Meena Singelee, gave a short overview of the outcome of our discussions.
 
Read the full post here.
 
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Dec 14 2011, 4:14 PM

VERTIC held a 25th anniversary event in Geneva, which included the official launch of the expansion of its NIM Programme into legislative drafting assistance for the comprehensive implementation of UN Security Council Resolution 1540.   

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Dec 06 2011, 5:29 PM

VERTIC gave a statement today during the afternoon session of the Seventh Review Conference of the BWC.

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Dec 01 2011, 5:30 PM

Earlier this month China announced the opening of a Beijing-based air quality monitoring centre to the public, and the adoption of stricter air quality monitoring standards. This announcement comes on the back of a social media campaign launched by high-profile figures within Chinese society. These recent changes raise questions of the transparency of China’s environmental monitoring system.

Read the new post here.

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Nov 30 2011, 4:38 PM

Yasemin Balci (Associate Legal Officer) participated in the 16th Conference of the States Parties to the Chemical Weapons Convention held from 27 November to 3 December in The Hague, the Netherlands.

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Nov 25 2011, 12:24 AM

The Preparatory Commission for the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty (CTBTO) recently announced the approval of a budget for the next on-site inspection (OSI) exercise. With a budget of US$10,300,000, this exercise will be a significant step towards strengthening the organisation’s OSI capabilities. The first such exercise, held in September 2008, revealed a number of important issues that will have to be resolved before the CTBTO’s OSI capabilities reach full strength. What is the aim of OSI exercises, and why are they important for the overall development of the CTBTO’s verification capabilities?

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Nov 20 2011, 8:53 PM

VERTIC's NIM Team has added legislation for Algeria and the Netherlands related to national implementation of the Biological Weapons Convention to VERTIC's BWC Legislation Database.

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Nov 16 2011, 10:09 PM

When the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) Board of Governors meet this week, the 35 member-state representatives will have some important decisions to make. Last Tuesday’s IAEA report on Iran has yet again stirred intense debate over the nature of Iran’s nuclear capabilities, and the appropriate policy responses. While certain states may advocate particular responses to the disclosures contained in this document, ultimately the appropriate multilateral response will come through the Board of Governors. In the light cast by the clear and detailed case against Iran contained within the Director General’s report, what could or should the Board of Governors do?

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Nov 16 2011, 2:53 PM

Today saw VERTIC Researcher David Cliff deliver a statement to a cross-regional workshop on the ‘Role of the CTBT in Regional and Global Security’ in Istanbul, Turkey. The workshop has been jointly organised by the Preparatory Commission for the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty Organisation and the Turkish government. 

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Nov 14 2011, 5:31 PM

VERTIC has been identified as a legislative assistance provider in the UN Counter-Terrorism Implementation Task Force's 'Report of the Working Group on Preventing and Responding to Weapons of Mass Destruction Attacks: Interagency Coordination in the Event of a Terrorist Attack Using Chemical or Biological Weapons or Materials'.

 

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Nov 11 2011, 5:20 PM

Scott Spence, Senior Legal Officer, and Rocio Escauriaza Leal, Legal Officer participated in the 'Regional Workshop for Latin America and the Caribbean on the
Seventh Review Conference and National Implementation of the Biological Weapons Convention', during 9-11 November 2011, in Lima, Peru.

 

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Nov 10 2011, 10:30 PM

Stanford Professor Siegfried Hecker, a regular visitor to North Korea, recently highlighted the possibility that the isolated nation might turn to further nuclear testing. The South Korean government also fear this possibility. Why might North Korea return to nuclear testing? And if they do, how easy will it be to detect? 

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Nov 04 2011, 9:12 PM

VERTIC's Senior Legal Officer, Scott Spence, participated in a 'Regional Workshop for South-East Europe on the Seventh Review Conference of the Biological Weapons Convention' in Belgrade, Serbia during 1-2 November 2011.  

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Nov 04 2011, 12:19 AM

As noted last week, a frenzy of submissions and proposals has emerged in the run up to the 17th Conference of the Parties (COP 17) to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC). A particular talking point in the conference, which is to be held in Durban (November 28 – 9 December 2011), will relate to India’s recent submission to the Ad Hoc Working Group on Long-term Cooperative Action (AWG-LCA). This submission suggests some interesting adjustments to common verification practices under the Convention. 

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Oct 28 2011, 5:20 PM

VERTIC has today released Brief No. 16 on ‘The CTBT: Verification and Deterrence’.

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Oct 27 2011, 7:24 PM

The 17th Conference of Parties (COP 17) under the United Nations Framework Convention for Climate Change (UNFCCC) in Durban is fast approaching. After meeting in Panama for the last time before Durban, delegates from two fundamental negotiating strands produced texts to facilitate negotiations. With less than five weeks remaining, the resulting texts will give the Conference of Parties a lot to discuss. However, it seems they will be unable to promote the outcome which many developing states hope for; realising a second commitment period (CP2) under the Kyoto Protocol (KP). 

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Oct 27 2011, 2:31 PM

Scott Spence, VERTIC's NIM Programme Senior Legal Officer, contributed the chapter 'National implementation through an effective legislative framework' in the UNIDIR/UNODA publication for the BWC Seventh Review Conference: 'Improving Implementation of the Biological Weapons Convention - The 2007–2010 Intersessional Process'.

 

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Oct 25 2011, 11:53 AM

Rocio Escauriaza Leal, VERTIC’s Legal Officer, contributed to the September issue of L'Observatoire de la Non-Prolifération/The Non-Proliferation Monthly (nº63)  - issued by CESIM.

 

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Oct 25 2011, 11:40 AM

VERTIC's NIM Team has added legislation from Paraguay and Uruguay related to national implementation of the Biological Weapons Convention, to VERTIC's BWC Legislation Database.

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Oct 20 2011, 4:34 PM

On 23 September 2011, over 160 ministers and senior officials convened at the United Nations in New York for the seventh biennial Article XIV Conference on Facilitating the Entry into Force of the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty (CTBT). Their two-fold purpose was deceptively simple. First, to “urge all States to remain seized of the issue at the highest political level.” Second, to encourage holdout Annex II States to commit themselves to signing and ratifying the CTBT “at the earliest possible date, thus ridding the world once and for all of nuclear test explosions.” Guinea was the latest to ratify the treaty mere days beforehand, rounding up a list of 155 ratifications and 182 States Signatories. However, this small victory is obscured by the lack of significant movement on other fronts. 

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Oct 20 2011, 9:54 AM

Burundi deposited its instrument of ratification in London on 18 October 2011, becoming a State Party to the Biological Weapons Convention (BWC) and bringing the membership of the BWC to 165. By joining the Convention, Burundi has set an example for the other 15 African States which haven't yet joined the BWC.

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Oct 20 2011, 12:00 AM

Zahoor Ahmed's article on 'National implementation of the Biological Weapons Convention – The case of India and Pakistan', published by the South Asian Strategic Stability Institute (SASSI) is now available on our website.

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Oct 14 2011, 6:05 PM

On Friday 14 October 2011, VERTIC’s Executive Director Andreas Persbo delivered a presentation on nuclear disarmament irreversibility, the subject of a newly-released VERTIC report, at the headquarters of the United Nations in New York. The New York gathering was organised to mark the twin launch of VERTIC’s report, ‘Irreversibility in Nuclear Disarmament: Practical steps against nuclear rearmament’, and a companion report on irreversibility by the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI). Both reports were written under grants from the Swiss Federal Department of Foreign Affairs.

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Oct 17 2011, 11:50 AM

Scott Spence, VERTIC's Senior Legal Officer, participated in the symposium 'Biosecurity and Biosafety: Future Trends and Solutions' in Milan, Italy during 12-14 October.

 

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Oct 13 2011, 8:12 PM

The development of confidence-building measures (CBMs) between India and Pakistan was recently given a boost by a July meeting of the Colombo Group in Sofia, Bulgaria. The Group, comprised primarily of South Asian security experts, engaged in a mock exercise to explore the verified dismantlement of surplus short-range ballistic missiles (SRBMs). This activity, which involved participants from both states, hoped to identify the fundamental issues involved in conducting practical dismantlement exercises in order to build towards an actual verification agreement. As India’s Prithvi I SRBM and Pakistan’s Haft I SRBM approach obsolescence, this is an ideal time to ascertain whether their removal from service can be used to build trust between both states.

 

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Oct 06 2011, 6:58 PM

An op-ed recently published in the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists suggests that there might be a new way to detect underground nuclear test explosions. The authors, a group of scientists from Ohio State University, have been working on turning a troublesome vulnerability of a common system into something useful. Their findings suggest that data from Global Positioning Systems (GPS), commonly used in navigation, could be used to augment existing detection techniques by detecting airborne shockwaves created by underground test explosions. The location of such explosions can then be narrowed down by comparing data on these shockwaves collected from nearby GPS receivers. This seems like a fascinating potential use of existing technology. However, there is an important issue which could prevent it from becoming a reality.

 

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Sep 30 2011, 5:59 PM

In this issue Sonia Drobysz looks at recent changes in the IAEA safeguards system, while Rocio Escauriaza Leal writes on the challenges and opportunities associated with efforts to secure universal acceptance of the Biological Weapons Convention. Plus, Verification Watch, Science & Technology Scan, Verification Quotes, Programme News and reflections by the Executive Director.

Read the full issue here.

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Sep 29 2011, 8:07 PM

Before the introduction of satellites, measuring the extent of Arctic sea ice was an arduous task. Historical studies using shipping logs, exhibitions and diaries give a rough indication of the spread of Arctic ice over hundreds of years. Today, a network of satellites monitor the scope of the ice while on-ice and underwater observations determine changes to the depth. The information provided by these techniques paint a dramatic picture of the future of the Arctic region. It is therefore important that they are understood, appreciated, and improved.

 

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Sep 28 2011, 1:52 PM

As some may have noticed, last week’s IAEA General Conference ended without member states being able to agree on a safeguards resolution. Reuters put the blame on some member states, quoting two Western envoys. This story was picked up by Global Security Newswire on 27 September. While there is some truth to the story, it doesn’t pick up on all the complexities of the debate.

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Sep 26 2011, 11:38 AM

We have recently had an e-mail outage lasting from 7:10 am on Friday until about 10:00 am on Monday. Our landlord changed internet providers but failed to forward the relevant information to our IT consultants, leading to a complete loss of communications.

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Sep 24 2011, 12:43 AM

Earlier tonight, the IAEA General Conference ended with the adoption of resolutions on application of safeguards in the Middle East and nuclear security, but failed on safeguards and postponed discussions on Israeli nuclear capabilities.

Read the full post here.

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Sep 23 2011, 6:59 PM

Day four of the IAEA General Conference saw some interesting developments. The general debate concluded with the final country statements. Following this, the plenary moved onto other agenda items: the resolution on the DPRK, examination of credentials and the appointment of the Board of Governors.

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Sep 21 2011, 10:01 PM

During the third day of the 55th IAEA General Conference, country statements concluded, safeguards were deliberated, and discussions were held on nuclear safety in the wake of the Fukushima accident. With only two days of discussion left, some progress has been made on finalising texts. However, contentious issues remain regarding a nuclear security resolution and the language used to describe the Additional Protocol.

 

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Sep 20 2011, 10:21 PM

Today at the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) General Conference, country statements continued in the plenary. These statements focused on safety, the Middle East and safeguards implementation issues. At the same time, the Committee of the Whole held its first session during which discussions on the safeguards resolution began. Safeguards were also discussed at length during a side event hosted by the Swiss government.

Read the new post here.

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Sep 20 2011, 12:43 AM

This morning the 55th regular session of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) General Conference opened in Vienna. VERTIC intern Kate Farrell and pro-bono consultant Sonia Drobysz report on the first day of the conference.

Read the full report here.

 

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Sep 19 2011, 5:36 PM

Today, VERTIC Senior Researcher Dr David Keir made a presentation to the 54th IAEA General Conference in Vienna, addressing the issue of multilateral disarmament verification - a subject area that the VERTIC Arms Control and Disarmament Programme is particularly active in.

The presentation looks at the importance of verification itself, and the benefits that multilateral involvement in verification can provide. It looks back to the UK-Norway Initiative, a collaborative research effort that VERTIC has in the past been closely involved with, and forward to the potential future roles of non-nuclear-weapon states - and international organizations – in nuclear disarmament verification processes.

‘By promoting inclusiveness and equity, effective multilateralism can create order and legitimacy in international affairs’, Dr Keir said. ‘Effective multilateral disarmament verification research has the potential to build trust among parties, to find a consensus on the key technical and procedural sticking-points, to generate ways of resolving those issues, to further the disarmament cause and to bring new states into the disarmament fold.’

The presentation is available in full here.

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Sep 15 2011, 8:06 PM

The Guardian recently reported that the UK Ministry of Defence (MoD) blocked a planning application from REG Windpower to build a wind farm near Eskdalemuir. The MoD prevented construction because the vibrations from the wind farms would disturb seismic monitoring activities at Eskdalemuir. Although this frustrated REG Windpower, the Eskdalemuir monitor is part of the CTBT’s International Monitoring System (IMS). Preventing interference with this system is important, and the MoD has a strong reason to deny the application. The MoD would object to any new turbines within 50 km of the station to ensure monitoring is not disturbed. Wind power developers are free to build outside of the 50 km zone. The problem is that Eskdalemuir is an ideal space for wind farms because it is open and sparsely populated. Unfortunately, those are the same qualities that make it an excellent seismic monitoring site.

Read the full post by Isadora Blachman-Biatch here.

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Sep 13 2011, 3:34 PM

Dr. David Keir joined the arms control and disarmament programme in early September 2011. He brings a wealth of technical expertise into the organization.

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Sep 12 2011, 2:11 PM
VERTIC's Senior Legal Officer, Scott Spence, and NIM/AC&D Consultant, Samir Mechken, recently completed training at the International School of Nuclear Law.
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Sep 12 2011, 1:37 PM

VERTIC's NIM Team has added legislation from Cameroon and Trinidad and Tobago related to national implementation of the Biological Weapons Convention, to VERTIC's BWC Legislation Database. 

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Sep 08 2011, 7:37 PM

At the end of November, South Africa will host representatives from up to 194 states for the 17th Conference of Parties (COP 17) under the United Nations Framework Convention for Climate Change (UNFCCC). The first Kyoto Protocol (KP) commitment period will expire next year. There is now significant pressure from developing states for a second commitment period to extend this, the only legally-binding set of emission reductions. However if South Africa hope to realise the conference motto of ‘Working Together, Saving Tomorrow’, they must respond to this pressure with great subtlety.

Read the post by Hugh Chalmers here

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Sep 01 2011, 9:36 PM

The United States Center for Infectious Disease Research and Policy (CIDRAP) recently conducted a study which highlights potential improvements in national methods of biological pathogen surveillance and detection. The paper is entitled ‘The NYC Native Air Sampling Pilot Project: Using HVAC Filter Data for Urban Biological Incident Characterization’. It shows that commercial heating, ventilation and air-conditioning (HVAC) systems, installed in many modern buildings, could be used to improve existing methods for monitoring the spread of airborne biological agents.

Read the post by Isadora Blachman-Biatch here.

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Aug 25 2011, 5:22 PM

From 18-22 July, 2011, the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) and the Republic of Ukraine held a regional training course for customs authorities in Eastern Europe. 20 participants from 16 states gathered in Kiev to explore technical aspects of the Chemical Weapons Convention (CWC) transfers regime. Opening the training course, Mr Ruslan Nimchynskyi, Acting Head of Arms Control for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine, noted that the fullest exchange of chemicals for peaceful purposes requires effective implementation of the CWC transfers regime.

Read the post by Kate Farrell here.

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Aug 18 2011, 7:11 PM

On 20 July 2011, the UN Security Council again held a debate on whether climate change is a threat to international peace and security. If it found so, the Council would be free to use its powers under the UN Charter to address it. The first such meeting in four years revealed new issues and cast a different light on the more familiar ones. What was the outcome of these discussions, and how did the Council see its role?

Read the post by Rebecca Pryce here.

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Aug 14 2011, 9:25 PM

VERTIC's NIM Team has added legislation from Dominica, Grenada, Guyana, Ireland, Moldova, Saint Vincent and Turkey related to national implementation of the Biological Weapons Convention, to VERTIC's BWC Legislation Database. 

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Aug 12 2011, 11:59 AM

 

On 1 August 2011, new amendments to the MARPOL 73/78 convention under the International Maritime Organization (IMO) came into force. The new amendments which were signed on the 26 March 2010 affect both annexes I and VI of the MARPOL 73/78 convention, whose name is shorthand for the ‘International Convention for the Prevention of Pollution from Ships, 1973 as modified by the Protocol of 1978’. The amended annexes regulate maritime activities with the aim of preventing crude oil pollution and reducing air pollution.

 

Read the full post by Isadora Blachman-Biatch here.

 

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Aug 04 2011, 7:41 PM

A zone free of weapons of mass destructions has long been a stated desire of many, if not all, of the governments in the broader Middle East. However, bitter disagreement pervades on how to reach this goal. A recent round of discussions in Brussels has showed that discussion is possible, but also clearly highlighted that the road towards the objective remains mined with difficult obstacles.

Read the post by Isadora Blachman-Biatch here.

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Jul 29 2011, 3:21 PM

 As a student of nuclear weapons proliferation, I have often hoped that one day I would be referred to as a ‘nuclear weapons specialist’. During the first student-led warhead dismantlement simulation, held in Oslo between 13-17 June 2011, I was somewhat prematurely asked to become exactly that. Along with 19 other students, I spent five days at the Norwegian Institute for Energy Technology outside Oslo as a citizen of a fictitious country, negotiating a verification protocol for a conceptual warhead dismantlement treaty known as the ‘Maghda Agreement’.

Read the full post by Hugh Chalmers, here.

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Jul 22 2011, 4:03 PM

Today, space-based satellite monitoring systems face a problem. Their sensors, which are become ever more sophisticated, produce more information than can be easily transmitted back to earth. Installing better computing equipment on the satellites could break this bottleneck. But can today’s complicated chips withstand one of the great hazards of orbit, space radiation?

Read the full post by Rebecca Pryce here.

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Jul 20 2011, 4:48 PM

VERTIC's NIM Team has added legislation from Central African Republic, Ethiopia, Guinea, Haiti and Saint Kitts and Nevis related to national implementation of the Biological Weapons Convention, to VERTIC's BWC Legislation Database.

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Jul 14 2011, 1:30 PM

On 9 June the IAEA Board of Governors opted to refer Syria to the UN Security Council, the first such referral since Iran’s case was sent to the United Nations five years ago. The Security Council will now discuss the matter, and probably soon.

Read the full post by former VERTIC intern Mikael Shirazi here.

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Jul 08 2011, 6:58 PM

Paul van den IJssel, President-designate of the Seventh Review Conference for the Biological Weapons Convention (BWC), was quoted last week as saying that he is pleased that the BWC does not receive as much attention as other treaties, such as the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT). As Robert Kadlec, the biosecurity adviser under former President George W. Bush noted, the community has ‘had no Prague speech ... [or] biological summit on this issue.’ 

To read the full post, click here.

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Jul 07 2011, 9:44 AM

Angela Woodward and Rocio Escauriaza Leal participated in the “Biological Weapons Convention (BWC) Conference Week for East Asia and the Pacific” that took place from 27 June to 1 July in Makati City, Philippines.

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Jul 05 2011, 4:02 PM

VERTIC's NIM Team has added legislation from the Philippines, Fiji and the Republic of Korea, related to national implementation of the Biological Weapons Convention, to VERTIC's BWC Legislation Database.

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Jul 01 2011, 6:58 PM

In this issue Nicholas Sims looks ahead to the Seventh Review Conference of BWC states parties in December, while Mikael Shirazi and Andreas Persbo discuss the importance of the IAEA’s Additional Protocol in preventing the clandestine development of uranium enrichment facilities. Plus, Verification Watch, Verification Quotes and a special Science & Technology Scan with a travel report on the CTBT’s 2011 Science & Technology Conference by Kristiane Roe Hammer.

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Jun 24 2011, 5:11 PM

In this post, VERTIC intern Kristiane Roe Hammer recounts her experience as lead inspector in a mock warhead dismantlement exercise held recently in Norway.

Read the full post here.

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Jun 17 2011, 4:29 PM

 In this post, former VERTIC intern Jospeh Burke looks at what progress has been made in the implementation of the recently-established Green Climate Fund - designed to streamline funding for climate mitigation actions around the world.

Read the full post here.

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Jun 14 2011, 8:12 PM

A recent article, making use of Google Earth imagery, on the environmental website Mongabay, has called attention to the damaged forests of Sarawak (a state in Malaysian Borneo), comparing their poor health with the apparently pristine forests just across the border in Indonesian and Bruneian territory.

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Jun 10 2011, 12:58 PM

The Wilton Park conference "Uncertain futures: where next for multilateral verification?" took place during 1-3 June with over 50 participants from many regions of the world and from intergovernmental organisations, governments and civil society. It was part of VERTIC's 25th anniversary celebrations.

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Jun 09 2011, 11:21 PM

The Wilton Park conference "Uncertain futures: where next for multilateral verification?" took place during 1-3 June with over 50 participants from many regions of the world and from intergovernmental organisations, governments and civil society. 

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Jun 01 2011, 8:44 PM

The Wilton Park conference "Uncertain futures: where next for multilateral verification?" begins. It is part of VERTIC's 25th anniversary celebrations.

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May 31 2011, 3:15 PM
VERTIC's NIM Team has added legislation from Comoros, Malaysia and Mozambique, related to national implementation of the Biological Weapons Convention, to VERTIC's BWC Legislation Database.
 
 
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May 27 2011, 3:22 PM

A summary of the conference 'Countering Biological Threats' was released today.

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May 26 2011, 5:34 PM

Mozambique deposited its instrument of accession in London on 29 March 2011, becoming a State Party to the BWC and bringing the membership of the BWC to 164. By joining the Convention, Mozambique has set an example for the other 16 African States which haven't yet joined the BWC.

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May 26 2011, 2:08 PM

 An EU-funded research has developed a chip that can screen water for biological pathogens. The tiny chip renders slow laboratory analysis unnecessary and old-fashioned.

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May 25 2011, 11:30 PM

Lord Browne of Ladyton was elected to the Board of Trustees on 11 May 2011.

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May 25 2011, 6:40 PM

VERTIC today welcomes the Rt. Hon. James Arbuthnot to the Board of Trustees. 

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May 23 2011, 9:49 AM

VERTIC's Senior Legal Officer, Scott Spence, participated in the conference 'Countering Biological Threats' which took place in Tbilisi, Georgia during 17-19 May 2011.

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May 19 2011, 12:56 PM

 Today, VERTIC continued its effort to make archived editions of Trust & Verify available to the research community.

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May 17 2011, 12:00 AM

Today, VERTIC continued its effort to make archived editions of Trust & Verify available to the research community.

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May 13 2011, 1:32 PM

VERTIC mourns the passing of trustee Ronald Nelson, and extends its deep condolences to his family and friends. Dr. Nelson passed away in South Dakota on 9 May, after having suffered a stroke.

 

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May 13 2011, 1:51 PM

Starting today, and leading up to our 25th Anniversary Conference at Wilton Park in June, VERTIC has started to scan and release back issues of Trust & Verify. We hope that the collection will not only illustrate the organisation’s rich past, but also serve as an archive for those who are interested in historical aspects of arms control, peace agreements, and the environment

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May 06 2011, 12:52 PM

VERTIC's NIM Team has added legislation from Spain and the European Union, related to national implementation of the Biological Weapons Convention, to VERTIC's BWC Legislation Database.
 

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May 04 2011, 5:53 PM

The recently-disclosed existence an Iranian manufacturing facility involved in the production of centrifuge components for uranium enrichment serves as a useful illustration of the verification problems associated with the Islamic Republic’s nuclear programme. Whilst not a breach of its duties under the Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT), the revelation does not build confidence in the exclusively peaceful nature of Iranian nuclear program and illustrates the value of the IAEA’s Additional Protocol in allaying proliferation concerns.

Read the post here

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Apr 17 2011, 10:43 AM

VERTIC NIM Programme staff participated in several CWC and BWC events during the week of 9-15 April.

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Apr 06 2011, 7:09 PM

VERTIC was invited to participate in the 2011 ‘Space Security Conference: Building on the Past, Stepping Towards the Future’. The conference was held at the UN Office in Geneva, 4-5 April 2011. It was organized by UNIDIR and the Secure World Foundation with support from the Simons Foundation and the Governments of Canada, the People’s Republic of China, the Russian Federation and the United States of America.

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Apr 04 2011, 3:00 PM
On 4 and 5 April 2011, Andreas Persbo participated in the ‘workshop on Legal Cooperation to Control Non-State Nuclear Proliferation: Extra-Territorial Jurisdiction and UN Resolutions 1540 and 1373’. The meeting was organized by the Nautilus Institute for Security and Sustainability and hosted by the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace.
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Apr 01 2011, 12:00 AM

In this issue Acahala Chandani Abeysinghe reviews progress in the climate negotiations while John Carlson discusses the Additional Protocol. Plus the regular features.

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Mar 31 2011, 12:00 AM

On 31 March 2011, VERTIC sponsored an event on ‘next steps for nuclear negotiations after New Start’, which asked the question ‘What prospects for US-Russia talks and the entry into-force of the comprehensive nuclear test ban treaty’? The office of Senator John Kerry (D-Mass) gave the meeting a room in the US Senate Visitor Center.

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Mar 28 2011, 12:00 AM

On Monday, 28 April 2011, Andreas Persbo delivered a presentation entitled ‘Bringing the Test Ban Treaty into Law’ to about 200 delegates to the Carnegie Endowment Nuclear Policy Conference. The panel also included:

 
  • Rebecca Johnson, Acronym Institute
  • Vallampadugai Arunachalam, former Science Advisor to the Prime Minister of India
  • Timothy Morrison, Office of Senator Jon Kyl (R-AZ) (speaking in his personal capacity) 
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Mar 25 2011, 3:56 PM

Larry MacFaul represented VERTIC’s ACD Programme at a conference on ‘Fissile Material Treaty: Possibility and Prospects’. The conference was organized by the South Asian Strategic Stability Institute (SASSI) and was held in Islamabad between 20-22nd March 2011. 

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Mar 21 2011, 12:23 PM

Scott Spence, VERTIC's Senior Legal Officer, has posted a new blog entry on Libya, CW and amendment of the Rome Statute to explicitly expand the International Criminal Court's jurisdiction to chemical and biological weapons use in international and domestic armed conflict. The blog entry is available here.

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Mar 09 2011, 5:45 PM

VERTIC's NIM Team has added legislation from Brunei, related to national implementation of the Biological Weapons Convention, to VERTIC's BWC Legislation Database.

 

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Feb 07 2011, 4:02 PM

VERTIC released today Brief No. 14 'Chemical and biological weapons use in the Rome Statute: a case for change'.   

 

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Feb 03 2011, 11:52 AM

VERTIC's NIM Team has added legislation from Andorra and Poland, related to national implementation of the Biological Weapons Convention, to VERTIC's BWC Legislation Database. 

 
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Feb 02 2011, 12:06 PM

Mr. John Carlson has joined VERTIC’s International Verification Consultants Network (the IVCN). This network advises the Executive Director on strategic issues, and has a role in reviewing all public VERTIC products. From time to time, the network also works as paid consultants to the organization.

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Feb 01 2011, 12:00 AM

On 1 February 2010, Andreas Persbo participated in a panel discussing Iran’s nuclear programme.  The meeting was organized by the Norwegian Defence Research Establishment (FFI) and held in central Oslo, Norway.

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Jan 31 2011, 2:18 PM

VERTIC's NIM Team has added Ecuador's implementing legislation to the BWC Database.

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Jan 31 2011, 11:38 AM

Rocío Escauriaza Leal, VERTIC’s Legal Officer, participated in an OSCE workshop with the aim of identifying the proper role of the OSCE in facilitating the implementation of UN Security Council Resolution 1540.

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Jan 21 2011, 7:33 PM

Today, we transmitted the first draft of our report on irreversible nuclear disarmament to the Federal Department of Foreign Affairs in Switzerland. 

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Jan 12 2011, 3:11 PM

VERTIC's NIM Team has added Holy See and additional South African legislation to the BWC Legislation Database.

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Jan 07 2011, 1:57 PM

In this issue (available here), Scott Spence discusses the role of legislation in preventing and responding to chemical terrorism, while Andreas Persbo looks at the potential for arms control confidence-building measures between India and Pakistan. 

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