UNFOLD ZERO Newsletter

Dear friends,
The UN Open Ended Working Group on Taking Forward Multilateral Nuclear Disarmament Negotiations (OEWG) met in Geneva in February and May this year to undertake substantive work on the legal measures required to achieve a nuclear-weapon-free world, and to prepare recommendations on reducing nuclear risks, enhancing transparency, and building further awareness about the humanitarian impact of nuclear weapons.  

The OEWG will meet again in Geneva on:
  • August 5, where the OEWG Chair Ambassador Thani Thongphakdi will release the draft report of the OEWG;
  • August 16, 17 and 19, where the report will be edited and hopefully adopted by the participating governments.
The meetings will again be open to civil society.

Key proposals to the OEWG

There were many proposals to the OEWG in the February and May sessions. Key ones include:
  • Commencing multilateral negotiations in 2017 on a legal agreement for the prohibition and elimination of nuclear weapons;
  • Holding a series of nuclear disarmament summits, similar to the Nuclear Security Summits, in order to elevate global attention and political action for nuclear disarmament;
  • Adoption of initial measures, such as no-first-use policies, de-alerting all nuclear weapons systems, reducing nuclear stockpiles and rescinding launch-on-warning.

What type of legal agreement?

There are a number of options for the type of legal agreement to be negotiated, each with its advantages and disadvantages. The main four options are a comprehensive nuclear weapons convention, a simple ban treaty, a framework agreement or a hybrid approach which would include a number of separate agreements on specific aspects of nuclear disarmament.

Most non-nuclear countries favour a nuclear weapons convention or ban treaty, while most allied countries favour a hybrid approach (which they call 'building blocks'). See OEWG: Momentum grows to outlaw nuclear weapons.

What you can do

  • Come to Geneva for the OEWG. Register through UNFOLD ZERO or through the OEWG website;
  • Call on your government to support the key proposals to the OEWG;
  • Organise a public action/event to highlight the OEWG;
  • List your action/event on Chain Reaction 2016, which links anti-nuclear actions undertaken around the world between July 8 and October 2.
Yours sincerely
Copyright © 2016 UNFOLD ZERO

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