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EU Non-Proliferation and Disarmament Papers

Countering the use of chemical weapons in Syria: Options for supporting international norms and institutions

Chemical weapons are banned by international law. Nonetheless, there have been numerous alleged and proven chemical attacks during the Syrian civil war. The international community has found ways to address this problem, but it has not managed to exclude the possibility of further chemical attacks once and for all.

The 2018 EU SALW Strategy: Towards an integrated and comprehensive approach

In November 2018 the European Union (EU) adopted a new strategy to combat the illicit proliferation of firearms, small arms and light weapons (SALW) and their ammunition. Through this new strategy, the EU and its member states commit themselves to coordinating their actions and initiatives on this important security challenge. This paper describes the development of EU policy on firearms and SALW, and analyses the actions foreseen in the new strategy.

Phosphate fertilizers as a proliferation-relevant source of uranium

A historical and often overlooked source of uranium for weapons and nuclear power is the extraction of uranium from phosphate fertilizers. In this way, uranium can be acquired legally but in an undeclared fashion, invisible to international commerce and export controls. One example is the production of 109 tonnes of uranium in Iraq, which was dedicated to a clandestine weapons programme. The equipment and processes used were European, supplied legally and openly.

The European Union and weapons of mass destruction: A follow-on to the global strategy?

The European Union (EU) should undertake a new and dedicated effort to deal with the problems related to weapons of mass destruction (WMD). More specifically, one or more new strategy documents are required and, in this context, the EU should also pursue WMD-related contingency planning to increase preparedness and prevent or counter crises. If the EU does not undertake these efforts, something much more will be at stake than the effectiveness of EU programmes in the areas of nonproliferation, arms control and disarmament.

Iran's ballistic missile programme: Its status and the way forward

Iran’s ballistic missile programme has long been a source of tension in Iran’s immediate neighbourhood and beyond. Providing Iran with a diverse and extensive arsenal, the ballistic missile programme plays multiple roles: it is an important element of military doctrine, a means of deterrence, and a tool of statecraft.

The primary threat posed by the programme stems from its potential connection to Iran’s nuclear programme, and the international community has consequently sought to address it as such. Supply-side restrictions and missile defences have played a prominent role.

The next generation(s) of Europeans facing nuclear weapons: Forgetful, indifferent, but supportive?

The post-cold war generation of citizens is forgetting nuclear weapon-related dangers and becoming indifferent to the issue. At the same time, the absence of mass grassroots, anti-nuclear protest suggests tacit support for current nuclear weapon policies. These three common diagnoses are potentially contradictory and, more importantly, are only assumptions. This paper is the first systematic attempt at assessing the attitude of the under 30s generation of European Union (EU) citizens with regard to nuclear weapons.