Today, CSR released a statement on the recently-announced postponement of the 2020 Review Conference of the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT). This statement is signed by 30 multidisciplinary experts among our team, advisors, and participants in CSR’s Working Group on Climate, Nuclear, and Security Affairs. It calls on world leaders to use the time now granted before the conference to renew trust-building efforts and steps to preserve the NPT as a cornerstone of nuclear threat reduction and international security.
Leading up to the issuance of this letter, many members of the CSR team exchanged ideas on the urgent need to advocate for progress in strengthening the NPT specifically and cooperation among nations generally. Rear Admiral John Gower, CB OBE, whose former responsibilities in the UK Ministry of Defence included nuclear and biological threats, put it eloquently:
“While the focus is rightly on the efforts to reduce the impact and effect of this pandemic, the delay to the RevCon offers the opportunity to make further preparations to achieve the most positive outcome. The COVID19 pandemic shows that global problems require truly transnational cooperative solutions.”
The delay of this important conference, potentially to as late as next April, offers a new chance to show a concerted pivot back toward international cooperation in addressing the most daunting threats the world faces. This must include pandemics and biological threats, the range of nuclear risks that appear to be rising, the climate crisis, and the ways these challenges can all exacerbate one another—especially if concerted transnational cooperation is not reinvigorated.
Read the full statement here.