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Pompeo Heads to Pyongyang in Quest of Denuclearization

By Kelsey Davenport & Alicia Sanders-Zakre

Photo: Mike Pompeo, then Director of the Central Intelligence Agency, meets with North Korea dictator Kim Jong-un over the Easter weekend (March 30 to April 1, 2018). Source: Wikimedia Commons.

Kelsey Davenport is director for nonproliferation policy and Alicia Sanders-Zakre is research assistant at the Arms Control Association. This article first appeared in the Inaugural Issue: The North Korea Denuclearization Digest on October 3, 2018. It is being reproduced courtesy Arms Control Association. – The Editor

WASHIGTON, D.C. (IDN-INPS) – After a long pause in U.S.-North Korea talks on denuclearization and peace, U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo will travel to Japan, China, North Korea, and South Korea October 6-8. He will visit Pyongyang October 7 and is expected to meet with Chairman Kim Jong-un.

UN High-Level Meeting Reflects Broad Support for Total Nuclear Disarmament

By Santo D. Banerjee

Photo: María Fernanda Espinosa Garcés (centre right), President of the 73rd session of the General Assembly, listens as Secretary-General António Guterres (centre left) addresses the high-level plenary meeting to commemorate and promote the International Day for the Total Elimination of Nuclear Weapons (26 September). At left is Izumi Nakamitsu, Under-Secretary-General and High Representative for Disarmament Affairs (ODA). UN Photo/Ariana Lindquist

NEW YORK (IDN) – The United Nations has pursued the goal of nuclear disarmament since the adoption of the very first General Assembly resolution in 1946. But aware that countries possessing nuclear weapons have well-funded, long-term plans to modernize their nuclear arsenals, in 2013 the UN declared September 26 as the International Day for the Total Elimination of Nuclear Weapons. [P 11] JAPANESE TEXT VERSION PDF | SPANISH | THAI

Japan Considers Ways of Shedding the Straitjacket and Go the Whole Hog for Nuclear Abolition

By Katsuhiro Asagiri

Photo (from left to right): Ms. Kaoru Nemoto, Director of the United Nations Information Centre in Tokyo; Mr. Nobuharu Imanishi, Director of Arms Control and Disarmament Division, MOFA; Ms. Masako Toki, Education project manager at the James Martin Center for Nonproliferation Studies at the Middlebury Institute of International Studies at Monterey; Ms. Mitsuki Kudo, Nagasaki Youth Delegation 2018. Credit: Katsuhiro Asagiri.

TOKYO (IDN) – Japan's profound interest in the international community's efforts to help usher in a world free of nuclear weapons was underlined in the run-up to the commemoration of the International Day for the Total Elimination of Nuclear Weapons on September 26, which was observed first time in 2014 in accordance with a decision of the UN General Assembly. [P 10] ITALIAN | JAPANESE TEXT VERSION PDF | SPANISH

The World Needs a Strong Legal Framework for Complete Elimination of Nuclear Weapons

Viewpoint by Kairat Abdrakhmanov

Photo: Kairat Abdrakhmanov, Minister for Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Kazakhstan, addresses the Security Council meeting on the maintenance of international peace and security, with a focus on non-proliferation of weapons of mass destruction. 26 September 2018, United Nations, New York. Credit: UN Photo/Manuel Elias

Following are extensive excerpts from the statement by Kairat Abdrakhmanov, Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Kazakhstan at the High-level Meeting of the UN Security Council on "Maintenance of International Peace and Security: Non-proliferation of WMD" on 26 September 2018 in New York.

NEW YORK (IDN) – Countering the spread and use of WMD: This goal is close to Kazakhstan’s heart, and is one of the key priorities of my country’s foreign policy. Kazakhstan’s firm and unwavering commitment to international peace and security commenced upon our independence in 1991.

Peacebuilders for a Nuclear-Weapon Free World

Viewpoint by Rene Wadlow*

Photo: Sculpture depicting St. George slaying the dragon. The dragon is created from fragments of Soviet SS-20 and United States Pershing nuclear missiles. UN Photo/Milton Grant

GENEVA (IDN) – As the world celebrated the UN-designated International Day for the Total Elimination of Nuclear Weapons on September 26, there were still some 16,000 nuclear weapons in the world, largely in the hands of the United States and the Russian Federation, some on “ready alert”.

There are plans to “modernise” nuclear weapons, and there are at least seven other states with nuclear weapons: North Korea, Pakistan, India and China in Asia, Israel in the Middle East and France and the United Kingdom in Europe.

Upcoming UN General Assembly Promises a Whiff of History

Fourth Woman President in 73 years – 18-year-old Female Activist to Speak at High Level Meeting on Nuclear Disarmament

By Santo D. Banerjee

NEW YORK (IDN) – The 73rd session of the United Nations General Assembly opening on September 18 promises to be historic. Not only because its President, María Fernanda Espinosa Garcés, the Foreign Minister of Ecuador, is the fourth woman on the top in the history of the UN’s main deliberative and policy-making body.

My Life Will Never be the Same Again

By Ilya Kursenko

Photo: A glimpse of the former nuclear testing site. Credit: Katshuhiro Asagiri, IDN-INPS Multimedia Director.

ON TRAIN FROM KURCHATOV TO ASTANA (IDN) – A Russian member of the CTBTO Youth Group, llya Kursenko, attended the five-day 2018 Youth International Conference of the CTBTO Youth Group and the Group of Eminent Persons (GEM) which concluded on September 2 in Astana, capital city of the Central Asian republic of Kazakhstan.

Kudos for Kazakhstan's 'Leading Role' as UN General Assembly Campaigns for Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty

By Santo D. Banerjee

Photo: Karipbek Kuyukov, Artist and The ATOM Project Honorary Ambassador addresses the UN General Assembly on September 6, 2018. Credit: CTBTO.

NEW YORK (IDN) – The International Day against Nuclear Tests (IDANT) has been observed around the world on August 29 since 2010. A new element was added this year when President of the 72nd session of the General Assembly, Miroslav Lajčák, convened a high-level plenary meeting on September 6 "to commemorate and promote" this landmark Day and the Nuclear‑Test‑Ban Treaty.

Test-Ban Treaty Will Produce Tangible Benefits for Humankind

Viewpoint by Dr Lassina Zerbo

Photo: Dr Zerbo Lassina addressing the UN General Assembly on 6 September 2018. Credit: CTBTO

NEW YORK (IDN-INPS) – In a keynote address at the High-Level Meeting of the UN General Assembly to commemorate and promote the International Day Against Nuclear Test on September 6, 2018, CTBTO Executive Secretary Dr Lassina Zerbo exhorted "all countries – small and large – that have not yet signed or ratified" the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty (CTBT) "to do so without hesitation."

Uncertainty About Whether the U.S. and Russia Can Avert a New Arms Race

By Daryl G. Kimball

Photo: U.S. Air Force maintenance technicians assigned to the 509th Aircraft Maintenance Squadron work on a B-2 stealth bomber at Whiteman Air Force Base, Mo. on March 19, 2011. The unit maintains aircraft tasked with strategic nuclear deterrence and global strike operations. Credit: Kenny Holston/U.S. Air Force

The United States and Russia are rushing forward with costly, ambitious plans to upgrade their Cold War nuclear arsenals and develop new types of destabilizing nuclear weapon, writes Daryl G. Kimball, Executive Director of the Arms Control Association in the September issue of Arms Control Today. The editorial appeared with the caption 'Can the U.S. and Russia Avert a New Arms Race?'

WASHINGTON, D.C. (IDN-INPS) – Five long years have passed since U.S. President Barack Obama proposed and Russian President Vladimir Putin unfortunately rejected negotiations designed to cut their excessive nuclear stockpiles by one-third below the limits set by the 2010 New Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (New START).