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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

The state of the Arms Trade Treaty: Advancing efforts on international assistance and illicit diversion

The Arms Trade Treaty (ATT) entered into force in 2013 and aims to promote a more transparent, responsible and better regulated global arms trade. On Friday 24 August the ATT’s Fourth Conference of States Parties (CSP4) concluded in Tokyo after five days of constructive deliberations.

3D-printable guns and why export controls on technical data matter

New developments in the 3D-printable gun case have revived the debate on the dangers of 3D-printing of firearms and the sharing of their electronic blueprints online. While these developments may only have a limited immediate impact on the proliferation of small arms, this approach has the potential to undermine controls on 3D printing and export controls on technical data more broadly.

Mali holds presidential elections: Polls to the people, power to the incumbents

On 29 July 2018, eight million registered Malian voters will be asked to elect their next president. The elections will mark the end of the first presidential term after the military coup in 2012 and will be the sixth presidential election since the democratic transition in 1991. This blog outlines the upcoming elections and provides an overview to SIPRI’s post-election survey to better understand the expectations of Mali’s population.

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.

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

Deployed in late 2017, G5 Sahel (G5S) is a new joint security force among five Sahel states. This backgrounder outlines the structure of the G5S including its mandate and funding as well as parallel initiatives organized by member states.

SIPRI recently released new data on deployments and fatalities in multilateral peace operations when it launched the 2018 edition of the SIPRI Yearbook. This topical backgrounder expands on the events of 2017 and puts this data in a 10-year perspective. For the first time, SIPRI data on and analyses of personnel deployments in the previous year and decade is based on monthly instead of annual snapshot figures.

This backgrounder provides an overview of ongoing and potential work on measuring states’ achievement of goal 16.4. It begins by outlining the SDG process and how it has sought to overcome the challenges associated with measuring illicit arms flows. It then summarizes the data collection efforts to date and outlines some possible options for filling the gaps that exist. 

The 1987 Treaty on the Elimination of Intermediate-Range and Shorter-Range Missiles (INF Treaty) is on the verge of collapse. The controversy surrounding the treaty has built up over several years and worsened in early 2017 following accusations by the United States that Russia had begun to deploy the missiles during 2016.

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?