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  • Author: Antoine Bondaz
  • Publication Date: 02-2020
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Stockholm International Peace Research Institute
  • Abstract: The North Korean nuclear and ballistic missile crisis is the most serious proliferation crisis the European Union (EU) and its member states currently face on the world stage. Despite the staging of diplomatic meetings, the threat caused by this crisis to European interests, in terms of proliferation, instability and to prosperity, persists. It is now essential that the EU and its member states move from a strategy of critical engagement to implementing a more proactive strategy of credible commitments in four areas: political engagement, non-proliferation, the implementation of restrictive measures and engagement with the North Korean people. Such a renewed strategy should be highly coordinated, build on the many initiatives already being taken and facilitated by the appointment of an EU Special Representative on North Korea.
  • Topic: Arms Control and Proliferation, Nuclear Weapons, European Union, Disarmament, Engagement
  • Political Geography: Europe, Asia, North Korea
  • Author: Henry Sokolski
  • Publication Date: 02-2020
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Nonproliferation Policy Education Center
  • Abstract: In the next decade, it is all too likely that the past success of the Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) in preventing the further spread of nuclear weapons among the world’s nations will be reversed. Three trends make more proliferation likely. First is the decay of nuclear taboos. Second, and arguably worse, is renewed vertical proliferation—the increase in size and sophistication of nuclear arsenals by states that already have them. Third, the technical information to fuel nuclear breakouts and ramp-ups is more available now than in the past. These trends toward increased proliferation are not yet facts. The author describes three steps the international community could take to save the NPT: making further withdrawals from the NPT unattractive; clamping down on the uneconomical stockpiling and civilian use of nuclear weapons materials (plutonium and highly enriched uranium); and giving real meaning to efforts to limit the threats that existing nuclear weapons pose.
  • Topic: Arms Control and Proliferation, Nuclear Weapons, Treaties and Agreements, Nuclear Power, Disarmament, Nonproliferation
  • Political Geography: Russia, North Korea, Global Focus, United States of America
  • Author: Assaf Orion, Amos Yadlin
  • Publication Date: 04-2018
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Institute for National Security Studies (INSS)
  • Abstract: At the strategic level, the convergence in time and space of the events following the chemical weapons attack in Duma by the Syrian regime portend a dramatic development with substantial potential impact for Israel’s security environment. The attack on the T4 airbase, attributed to Israel, falls within the context of the last red line that Israel drew, whereby it cannot accept Iran’s military entrenchment in Syria. The attack in Duma reflects the Syrian regime’s considerable self-confidence at this time. As for Trump, the attack provides him with another opportunity to demonstrate his insistence on the red lines that he drew and take a determined stance opposite Putin. Thus, Israel’s enforcement of its red line and the United States’ enforcement of its red line have met, while Russia finds itself exerting efforts to deter both countries from taking further action that could undermine its achievements in Syria and its positioning as the dominant world power in the theater. However, the strategic convergence does not stop at Syria’s borders, and is unfolding against the backdrop of the crisis emerging around the Trump administration’s demands to improve the JCPOA, or run the risk of the re-imposition of sanctions and the US exiting the agreement. Indeed, the context is even wider, with preparations for Trump’s meeting with North Korean President Kim on the nuclear issue in the far background. Therefore, the clash between Israel and Iran in Syria on the eve of deliberations on the nuclear deal could potentially lead to a change from separate approaches to distinct issues to a broader and more comprehensive framework with interfaces and linkages between the issues.
  • Topic: Arms Control and Proliferation, Diplomacy, Regional Cooperation, Military Strategy, Hezbollah
  • Political Geography: Russia, United States, Europe, Iran, Middle East, Israel, Asia, North Korea, Syria, North America
  • Publication Date: 12-2013
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: International Crisis Group
  • Abstract: China tolerates the nuclear ambitions of North Korea (the Democratic People's Republic of Korea, DPRK) for now because its interests in the neighbourhood are much wider and more complex than this single issue. Beijing and the West often work toward their shared goal of a nuclear-free Korean peninsula with contradictory approaches that reflect their different priorities. The West uses diplomatic isolation, economic sanctions and extended deterrence to pressure Pyongyang to give up its nuclear program. Many Western policymakers believe the DPRK will denuclearise if sufficient costs are imposed and that Beijing holds the keys because the North is economically dependent on it. But China is reluctant to take any coercive action that might destabilise the regime and change a delicate geopolitical balance. It instead continues with diplomatic engagement and economic cooperation as the instruments it hopes will cause the leadership to denuclearise in the indeterminate future.
  • Topic: Security, Foreign Policy, Arms Control and Proliferation, Nuclear Weapons, Weapons of Mass Destruction
  • Political Geography: China, Israel, North Korea
  • Author: Yury Fedorov
  • Publication Date: 10-2013
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Institute of International Relations Prague
  • Abstract: The Obama administration recently suggested concluding a legally binding agreement on transparency that would confirm that American BMD does not pose a threat to Russia's deterrence forces, and also concluding a framework agreement on further cutting Russian and American nuclear arsenals. The USA may be interested in reducing the tensions with Russia over the missile defense with a view to break the deadlock on a wide complex of hard security and proliferation issues, including the hot problems of nonstrategic nuclear weapons in Europe and Iran and the North Korean nuclear programs, and also to ensure Russia's support in managing regional crises – these days, especially that in Syria.
  • Topic: Conflict Prevention, Foreign Policy, Arms Control and Proliferation, Nuclear Weapons, Treaties and Agreements, Bilateral Relations
  • Political Geography: Russia, United States, Europe, North Korea, Syria
  • Author: Mathieu Duchâtel, Phillip Schell
  • Publication Date: 12-2013
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Stockholm International Peace Research Institute
  • Abstract: Since the death of Kim Jong Il, in December 2011, the new leadership of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK or North Korea) has taken important steps to further develop its nuclear weapon programme and to consolidate the programme's political status. These developments, which culminated in a nuclear test explosion in February 2013, suggest that the acquisition of a nuclear deterrent is a strategic goal, rather than a tactical bargaining chip for North Korea.
  • Topic: Foreign Policy, Arms Control and Proliferation, Nuclear Weapons, Bilateral Relations
  • Political Geography: China, Asia, North Korea
  • Author: Siegfried S. Hecker
  • Publication Date: 03-2012
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Center for International Security and Cooperation
  • Abstract: Three years ago, Pyongyang expelled the international inspectors from its Yongbyon nuclear complex and abandoned the Six - Party talks. The crisis atmosphere on the Korean peninsula sparked by Pyongyang's military actions in 2010 turned into diplomatic calm in 2011, but Pyongyang continued to expand its nuclear program. It conducted a second nuclear test in 2009, unveiled a modern, sophisticated uranium centrifuge facility, and rolled out a road - mobile intermediate - range ballistic missile in 2010. Its coopera tion in missile technologies with Iran continued and nuclear cooperation is suspected. Beijing protected Pyongyang from crippling sanctions while Washington and Seoul remained reluctant to engage having been burned by Pyongyang's unveiling of its clandestine uranium enrichment program. Prospects for resolution of the North Korean nuclear crisis looked grim. Then, surprisingly in December 2011, just before the death of Kim Jong - il, American and North Korean diplomats nearly reached a deal to return to the negotiating table. Even more surprisingly, the new Kim regime agreed to take initial steps with Washington in February. In this paper, I describe the troubling nuclear developments in 2011 and suggest targets for the upcoming negotiations to further reduce the nuclear risks while the parties resume the long road toward eventual denuclearization and normalization of relations on the Korean peninsula.
  • Topic: Arms Control and Proliferation, Diplomacy, Nuclear Weapons, International Security, Nuclear Power
  • Political Geography: North Korea
  • Author: Paul Lettow
  • Publication Date: 04-2010
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Council on Foreign Relations
  • Abstract: The international nuclear nonproliferation regime—the principal objective of which is to prevent the spread of nuclear weapons—is under severe strain. The North Korean and Iranian nuclear programs have exploited and underscored weaknesses in the regime that must be fixed if it is to serve its purpose. Those weaknesses are both structural—ambiguities and limitations in the current rules—and result from a failure to enforce the rules that exist.
  • Topic: Arms Control and Proliferation, Nuclear Weapons, Treaties and Agreements, Weapons of Mass Destruction
  • Political Geography: United States, Iran, Middle East, North Korea
  • Author: Hui Zhang
  • Publication Date: 07-2009
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs, Harvard University
  • Abstract: If the agreed objective of complete denuclearization of Korean peninsula is to be achieved, it can be expected that dismantling and ultimately decommissioning North Korean plutonium production facilities have to be proceeded. This paper will focus on decommissioning the 5 megawatt-electric (MWe) plutonium production reactor and the reprocessing plant. It explores and recommends the best decommissioning approaches to those nuclear facilities. It also provides a discussion of the decommissioning costs for these nuclear facilities.
  • Topic: Arms Control and Proliferation, Nuclear Weapons, Weapons of Mass Destruction
  • Political Geography: Israel, North Korea, Sinai Peninsula
  • Author: Marcus Noland
  • Publication Date: 02-2009
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: East-West Center
  • Abstract: This study finds that North Korea's nuclear test and the imposition of UN Security Council sanctions have had no perceptible effect on trade with its two largest partners, China and South Korea. Before North Korea conducted an underground nuclear test, it was widely believed that such an event would have cataclysmic diplomatic ramifications. However, beginning with visual inspection of data and ending with time-series models, no evidence is found to support the notion that these events have had any effect on North Korea's trade with its two principal partners.
  • Topic: International Relations, Arms Control and Proliferation, Diplomacy, Nuclear Weapons, Treaties and Agreements, Weapons of Mass Destruction, International Security, Sanctions
  • Political Geography: South Korea, North Korea
  • Author: Vishakha N. Desai
  • Publication Date: 10-2006
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Asia Society
  • Abstract: On October 9th, North Korea declared that it had tested a nuclear weapon, and after a week of speculation, US intelligence officials confirmed today that a nuclear explosion was in fact carried out. A sanctions resolution at the UN Security Council has been unanimously adopted. Negotiations are now underway about how precisely to implement these sanctions, which include Pyongyang's weapons and missile programmes, as well as luxury goods. They also permit cargo coming from or going to North Korea to be inspected for banned items. It is the latter point which is contentious for China. Asia Society, with our unique focus and resources, is specially positioned to bring you analysis and points of view from experts who have lived, worked and studied in a variety of Asian countries. Below, some of our leading Asia Society analysts comment on the developing situation.
  • Topic: International Relations, Arms Control and Proliferation, Nuclear Weapons
  • Political Geography: United States, China, Asia, North Korea
  • Author: Colin Robinson, Stephen H. Baker
  • Publication Date: 05-2003
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Center for Defense Information
  • Abstract: North Korea's military threat and somewhat peculiar approaches to international relations have been a central difficulty in dealing with the isolated regime during the past decade. In the early 1990s, North Korea, formally known as the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK), was expected by many observers to collapse, just as communist regimes in Eastern Europe and the Soviet Union did.
  • Topic: Security, Defense Policy, Arms Control and Proliferation, Nuclear Weapons, Science and Technology
  • Political Geography: Eastern Europe, Asia, North Korea, Soviet Union
  • Author: Chung-in Moon
  • Publication Date: 06-2003
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Social Science Research Council
  • Abstract: The North Korean problem is composed of two inter-related issues, namely nuclear weapons and missiles. The current quasi-crisis on the Korean peninsula has resulted mainly from disputes over North Korea's nuclear weapons development that involves three dimensions. The first dimension is the suspicion on its past possession of nuclear warheads (one or two) before the signing of the Geneva Agreed Framework (Agreed Framework) in 1994. The second one centers on present nuclear issues related to reprocessing of 8,000 spent fuel rods stored in water pond and manufacturing and exports of plutonium as well as production of additional nuclear warheads, which were previously frozen by the 1994 Agreed Framework. The third dimension is the future nuclear problem associated with the development of highly enriched uranium (HEU) program. The United States claims that North Korea admitted its existence during its special envoy, James Kelly's visit to Pyongyang in October 2002.
  • Topic: Security, Arms Control and Proliferation
  • Political Geography: Geneva, Israel, North Korea
  • Author: Michael J. Green, James T. Laney, Morton I. Abramowitz
  • Publication Date: 07-1999
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Council on Foreign Relations
  • Abstract: In May, former Secretary of Defense William Perry traveled to North Korea with a comprehensive proposal to increase outside assistance for its isolated and declining Stalinist regime in exchange for steps by the North to reduce its threatening military posture. The Perry proposal was designed to test North Korea's intentions not only to abide by the 1994 Agreed Framework, which aimed to cap Pyongyang's nuclear ambitions, but also to stop further missile tests and military provocations. It is unlikely that North Korea will respond positively. The regime has survived for five decades only by maintaining a belligerent stance. Pyongyang has rebuffed South Korean President Kim Dae Jung's unprecedented efforts to improve North-South relations and has continued to produce military tensions, even in the wake of the Perry visit. But it is too soon to give up on a comprehensive package to reduce tensions with North Korea. Despite the illusion of self-sufficiency, or juche, the North is increasingly dependent on outside help to sustain itself. It is possible that over time Pyongyang will find no alternative to greater interaction with the outside world. Barring an increase in threatening North Korean actions, the United States should keep the Perry proposal on the table and continue to support Kim Dae Jung's policy of engagement. A second Taepodong missile test by North Korea would not violate any existing North Korean commitments, but it would significantly change the situation in Northeast Asia. We should make every effort to deter a launch, but if one takes place, the United States, Japan, and South Korea will have to examine ways to enhance defense against a different North Korean threat. South Korea should suspend new investment in North Korea and Japan should impose new sanctions and consider restrictions on financial transfers to the North. The United States should lower its diplomatic activity toward Pyongyang, keeping channels open, but forcing North Korea to provide incentives for greater dialogue. A missile launch should not end our attempts at diplomacy or cause us to forget that North Korea's relative military capabilities are in decline, but if a test is conducted business cannot continue as usual. Although a North Korean missile launch would do great damage to political support for the Korean Peninsula Energy Development Organization (KEDO) in the United States, Japan, and South Korea, it should not be a reason for us to abandon our commitments under the Agreed Framework. The Agreed Framework stands as the major bulwark against a return to the kind of calamitous military steps the United States was forced to consider in 1994 to stop North Korea's nuclear program. Inspections of suspicious underground facilities at Kumchangri in May revealed no North Korean violation of the Agreed Framework. Although we cannot assume from this that Pyongyang has forsaken its nuclear ambitions, we do know that implementation of the Agreed Framework remains the best approach to preventing nuclear weapons development in the North. In the end, there is no easy solution to the intractable North Korean problem. Efforts to reduce tensions and build North-South reconciliation have yielded little. We are strong enough to test inducements for change in the North, but our policy must be based on robust deterrence and close defense cooperation with our allies.
  • Topic: Security, Foreign Policy, Arms Control and Proliferation
  • Political Geography: United States, Japan, East Asia, South Korea, North Korea, Korean Peninsula
  • Author: James Laney, Michael J. Green
  • Publication Date: 07-1999
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Council on Foreign Relations
  • Abstract: Good morning. Thank you for coming. I'm Michael Green, senior fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations here in Washington, and the director of this independent task force on Korea policy, which is sponsored by the Council on Foreign Relations. We are here today to release and explain our recent study on policy towards North Korea. This is, in many ways, the culmination of a two-year effort by the Council.
  • Topic: Security, Foreign Policy, Arms Control and Proliferation
  • Political Geography: United States, Washington, East Asia, North Korea, Korea
  • Author: Arnold Kanter, Donald A. Baer, Donald P. Gregg, Bernard E. Trainor, Robert L. Gallucci
  • Publication Date: 04-1999
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Council on Foreign Relations
  • Abstract: Ambassador Robert L. Gallucci (Dean, School of Foreign Service, Georgetown University; Former Ambassador-at-Large, Department of State): Looking at the situation with respect to domestic stability in the north, we judge their regime as stable, which is to say, that we do not see a near-term deterioration in the ability of Kim Jong Il to maintain power, notwithstanding this economic situation that he confronts.
  • Topic: Foreign Policy, Arms Control and Proliferation
  • Political Geography: United States, East Asia, North Korea
  • Publication Date: 09-1999
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System
  • Abstract: The worldwide ballistic missile proliferation problem has continued to evolve during the past year. The proliferation of technology and components continues. The capabilities of the missiles in the countries seeking to acquire them are growing, a fact underscored by North Korea's launch of the Taepo Dong-1 in August 1998. The number of missiles in these countries is also increasing. Medium- and short-range ballistic missile systems, particularly if armed with weapons of mass destruction (WMD) warheads, already pose a significant, threat to US interests, military forces, and allies overseas. We have seen increased trade and cooperation among countries that have been recipients of missile technologies from others. Finally, some countries continue to work toward longer-range systems, including ICBMs.
  • Topic: International Relations, Arms Control and Proliferation, Political Economy
  • Political Geography: United States, North Korea