Putting the R in 1540

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The operative level: international organizations dealing with “nuclear terrorism”. CB(R)N and the 1540 Committee. The benefits of putting the R in 1540 ...

Putting the R in 1540 2012 PONI Fall Conference October 18-19, 2012 Center for Strategic and International Studies Washington, D.C.

Enrico Fiorentini M.A. in Nonproliferation and Terrorism Studies, Monterey Institute of International Studies Former Research Intern, Vienna Center for Disarmament and Non-Proliferation

Outline UNSCR 1540 and nuclear security: a missing link The declaratory level: international law instruments pertaining to “nuclear terrorism” The operative level: international dealing with “nuclear terrorism” CB(R)N and the 1540 Committee The benefits of putting the R in 1540


UNSCR 1540 and nuclear security: a missing link 1540 addresses the need to prevent access by nonstate actors to C, B, N weapons, their delivery means, and “related materials”, i.e., “materials, equipment, and technology which could be used for C, B, N weapons” 1540 as a subset of the nuclear security equation Threats include the possibility of non-state actors acquiring and using: 1) nuclear weapons; 2) FMs for INDs; 3) radioactive materials for RDDs or REDs; 4) radioactive material dispersion by ways of targeting stationary or mobile nuclear infrastructures

The declaratory level: international law instruments The CPPNM and its amended version do not list acts involving “R” materials The International Convention for the Suppression of Terrorist Bombing lists “toxic chemicals, biological agents or toxins or similar substances or radiation or R materials” (Art. 1, (3)(b)) ICSANT lists conducts involving the making, possession or use of IND, RDD or RED The Protocol to the Protocol for the Safety of Fixed Platforms and the Protocol to the Convention for the Safety of Maritime Navigation mention acts involving C, B, R, N weapons

The operative level: international organizations The IAEA focuses on preventing non-state actors from accessing nuclear or other radioactive material, among other things UNODC and EUROPOL have developed a holistic approach towards CBRN terrorism INTERPOL focuses on CBRNe UNICRI’s efforts center on knowledge exchange about best practices on CBRN issues EU CBRN Risk Mitigation CoE Initiative CTITF’s WG on Preventing and Responding to WMD Attacks

Some take-away points so far... Defining terms is a problem, and most do not want to expand the issue of what “WMD” means

Less likelihood of “WMD terrorism”, but “CBRN terrorism” Is there a value in a loose definition or is it confusing?

CB(R)N and the 1540 Committee Not out of the ordinary to think of the Committee as an international organization 1540 as the only IGO that doesn’t explicitly deal with the “R” word

CB(R)N and the 1540 Committee •

However, it is becoming involved as it can be inferred by looking at the reports to the SC and at the national matrices

1540 partners ensure the Committee knows of the “R” word

1540’s declaratory lacuna somewhat filled by the praxis

The benefits of putting the R in 1540 An effective safeguard system for “R” risks could be achieved by taking advantage of 1540’s binding nature and track-record

Doing so will help better manage “R” threats, avoid terminological confusion, and strengthen a global CBRN nonproliferation framework Putting the “R” in future 1540 work will render the resolution more rather than less comprehensive

Wrapping up 1540 doesn’t include an explicit reference to the “R” Other instruments are used to deal with the threat However, it is illogical given both real world dangers of “R” weapons and overlaps at the declaratory and operative levels 1540 Committee seems to be incrementally accepting this in practice This should be made explicit Doing so will help better manage “R” threats, avoid terminological confusion, and strengthen a globally binding nonproliferation legal framework

Thank you!


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