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Under the 1998 EU Code of Conduct on Arms Export, which was replaced in 2008 by the EU Common Position on Arms Exports, member states of the European Union have committed themselves to achieving ‘high common standards’ and ‘convergence’ in their arms export controls.

On 26 February 2018 the European Union (EU) adopted its latest Council Conclusions on Climate Diplomacy following a Council Meeting of Foreign Ministers in Brussels. These Council Conclusions are much more action-oriented than those adopted previously.

The French initiative is a commendable effort to hold facilitators and supporters of CW use in Syria legally accountable and thereby to help ensure that the CWC norms are not fundamentally undermined through inaction or neglect.

According to the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (UNOCHA) and the Financial Tracking Service (FTS), the number of people in need of humanitarian aid in 2017 rose to 141.1 million and they were located in 37 countries. The Global Humanitarian Appeal stood at nearly $13 billion as of November 2017, which represented 58 per cent of the total fund target set for humanitarian assistance. The gap between the appeal target and funds raised, however, has been widening in recent years, as has the number of people affected by disasters—both natural and human-induced.

‘We have succeeded at keeping famine at bay, we have not kept suffering at bay’, said UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres while briefing members of the UN Security Council on 12 October. Explaining the impediments to an effective response to the risks of famine in north-east Nigeria, Somalia, South Sudan and Yemen, and, Guterres named conflict as a root cause of famine.

WritePeace blog

Judges as Peacebuilders: The challenges of ensuring access to justice in conflict-affected settings

ILAC’s session on “Legitimacy, Accountability and Access to Justice” in the upcoming Stockholm Forum on Peace and Development provides an opportunity to take a first step in this process by bringing together experts and practitioners on customary justice to identify how such engagement can contribute to the politics of peace.

The talk of the town in Tehran: Can the Europeans deliver?

Dr Tarja Cronberg, SIPRI Associate Fellow and the author of ‘Nuclear Multilateralism and Iran: Inside EU Negotiations’ has revisited Tehran to meet with Iranian high-level officials and the EU, China and Russia ambassadors to Tehran. These ‘Tehran’ interviews form the background for this blog at this critical juncture where the future of the Iran nuclear deal is at stake.

Let’s talk about ‘women’s issues’

Today is International Men’s Day – a day that was first initiated by labour movements to protest against men’s working conditions. Later, in 1910, the event was recast as a day to support men’s universal right to vote and since then it has been used to celebrate men’s rights, protest wars, demonstrate against increased food prices, and more generally to promote men’s empowerment and equal rights around the world. It was not until 1975 – the start of the so-called United Nations Decade for Men – that the UN as an institution began to celebrate International Men’s Day on 8 March. 

Towards a comprehensive approach to sustaining peace - a reality too complex to tweet? 

Just like UNSC resolution 1325 and follow-up resolutions on Women, Peace and Security, feminist organisations – this time together with researchers – have driven awareness of the gender, climate change and security nexus. There is a long way to go, but there is strong interest from a wide range of stakeholders in supporting research on this nexus, to inform their work.

Expert Comments

On 26 January 2018 China’s State Council Information Office published a white paper clarifying China’s vision of the Arctic, its intentions, goals and objectives in the region.

The announcement that Russia had completed the destruction of its chemical weapons stockpile was rightly applauded as a milestone in multilateral arms control. However, it was also a reminder of the significant part that international non-proliferation and disarmament assistance played in facilitating the implementation of the 1993 Chemical Weapons Convention (CWC).

Dr Florian Krampe provides commentary on the newly launched Report of the Secretary-General on the situation in the Lake Chad Basin region, arguing that the report would have been stronger if it had highlighted the underlying environmental contributions of the region’s fragility.

Robert Kelley provides analysis of North Korea's sixth nuclear test, taking a look at what we know so far.

Backgrounders

Given the transatlantic disagreement over the JCPOA, European countries might feel increasing pressure to focus on Iran’s ballistic missile activities in order to find common ground with the USA. But is the Western perspective on Iran’s missile programme based on an objective threat assessment, and is a punitive approach helpful in addressing it?

On 20 October the First Committee of the United Nations General Assembly will discuss the annual

The Iran nuclear deal has demonstrated that diplomacy can triumph in nuclear non-proliferation: dialogue, rather than military action,

Off-budget expenditure is used to fund a large proportion of the arms purchases not captured in the current military expenditure data on South American countries. This topical backgrounder begins to address this issue, using Venezuela as the initial country case for improvement.

Lora Saalman provides the context for how threat perceptions are manifested in China's hypersonic glide capabilities.