The Week Ahead March 31- April 5: GGE on the FMCT; Mine Action Day; 5th Anniv. of Prague Speech; Pitching-In

The following are some of the key arms control dates and developments to watch in the coming week. WeekAheadSOLO

For more news and analysis on these and other weapons-related security issues, consider subscribing to ACA’s monthly journal Arms Control Today, which is available in print/digital and digital-only editions.

– the staff at Arms Control Today

March 31: Forum on Options for Advancing Nuclear Disarmament Through Humanitarian Dialogue and NPT Process

The Arms Control Association and Physicians for Social Responsibility will be hosting an event in Washington, D.C. on March 31 that will explore explore options for accelerating progress on nuclear disarmament through the humanitarian consequences of nuclear weapons dialogue and the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty (NPT) process. The event will take place ahead of the 2014 NPT PrepCom scheduled to take place April 28-May 9 in New York.

For more information on the recent humanitarian consequences of nuclear weapons conference, see:  “Mexico Hosts Meeting on Nuclear Effects,” in the March issue of Arms Control Today.

March 31-April 11: Group of Experts Meet on Fissile Material Cutoff Treaty

A group of governmental experts (GGE) established by UN resolution A/RES/67/53, will begin the first of two, two week-long sessions to make recommendations on possible aspects that could contribute to, but not negotiate a treaty banning the production of fissile material for nuclear weapons or other nuclear explosive devices. The group is charged with presenting a consensus report to the UN General Assembly 70th Session.

For more information and analysis about the FMCT, check out these Arms Control Association resources: Fissile Material Cut-off Treaty (FMCT) at a Glance, Fact Sheet; “Nuclear Powers Urge Progress on FMCT,” by Tom Z. Collina,  Arms Control Today, May 2013; “UN First Committee Seeks FMCT Progress,” by Marcus Taylor, Arms Control Today, December 2012.

April 4: International Day of Mine Awareness and Assistance in Mine Action

On April 4, members of the international community will bring awareness to the public and government officials of the harm caused by the indiscriminate nature of landmines. Many experts and NGOs have called for the Obama administration to release its landmine policy review that was launched early in Obama’s first term, with the conclusion of joining the 1997 Convention on the Prohibition of the Use, Stockpiling, Production and Transfer of Anti-Personnel Mines and on Their Destruction, known as the “Ottawa Convention” or “Mine Ban Treaty.”

Senator Patrick Leahy has also been making a series of statements, including on the floor of the U.S. Senate, calling on the administration to release its landmine policy review with the conclusion to join the Mine Ban Treaty.  Senator Leahy and the Mines Advisory Group (MAG) America will host a photography exhibit at the Russell Rotunda, April 1-4, to raise awareness about the destructive toll of these weapons. The exhibit is open to the public from 10:00am to 4:00pm.

April 4: ACA and the Lugar Center Event on the Final Phase Negotiations with Iran

The next round of P5+1 talks with Iran will take place the second week of April. The Arms Control Association and the Lugar Center are hosting a joint briefing April 4 on Capitol Hill to explore what would comprehensive deal could look like.

Speakers at the April 4 event include, George Perkovich, Director of the Nuclear Policy Program at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace and Michael Singh, Managing Director of The Washington Institute for Near East Policy. Click here to RSVP.

Both speakers wrote feature articles for the March 2013 issue of Arms Control TodayCrafting a Well-Rounded Nuclear Deal With Iran,” by George Perkovich, and “The Case for Zero Enrichment in Iran,” by Michael Singh.

April 5: Fifth Anniversary of President Obama’s Prague Speech

Saturday will mark the five year anniversary of President Obama’s historic speech in Prague that laid out his administration’s priorities and vision for reducing the number and role of nuclear weapons, ending nuclear testing, securing vulnerable nuclear materials and more. The administration made significant progress during Obama’s first term, but progress on the nuclear risk reduction agenda has slowed during the second term, and Russia’s actions in Crimea create new challenges for progress on further U.S.-Russian nuclear reductions beyond the 2010 New START treaty.

Check out the April issue of Arms Control Today for news on the recent Nuclear Security Summit and for analysis on advancing nuclear arms control in the wake of the Ukraine crisis and the challenges facing the nuclear nonproliferation regime.

April 4: Washington Nationals Home Opener

Looking to make good on a promise of a better season than last year, the Washington Nationals will host the National League East defending Champion Atlanta Braves for their first home game of the season this coming Friday.

The staff here at ACA world headquarters in downtown Washington have high expectations for our home team. If you’ve been on Twitter for any time, you probably know that many influential arms control leaders are fans as well, including Undersecretary of State for Arms Control and International Security Rose Gottemoeller who is ready to pitch in!


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