Nuclear Policy News

Nuclear Policy News - September 28, 2017

Nuclear Policy News – September 28, 2017

TOP NEWS

South Korea expects more provocative acts by North Korea in mid-October
Reuters

Dunford: North Korea has not changed military posture despite rhetoric
The Hill

Trump’s Top General Says Iran Honoring Nuke Deal
Foreign Policy

EAST ASIA

China says military means not an option to resolve Korea situation
Reuters
9/27/17
China said on Wednesday the North Korean nuclear issue should be resolved through dialogue, and that military means were not an option, after U.S. President Donald Trump warned North Korea that any U.S. military option would be “devastating.”

China orders N.K. firms to close down
Yonhap News Agency
9/28/17
China has ordered North Korean companies in the country to close down within 120 days of the United Nations Security Council's passage of the latest of sanctions on Sept. 12, according to China's commerce ministry on Thursday.

South Korea is Speeding Up Arms Buildup to Counter North, Its Leader Says
New York Times
9/28/17
President Moon Jae-in said on Wednesday that South Korea’s military would speed up efforts to strengthen its pre-emptive strike, missile defense and retaliatory capabilities against North Korea, and he renewed his call for the armed forces to become more independent of America’s.

South Korea expects more provocative acts by North Korea in mid-October
Reuters
9/27/17
South Korea expects more provocative acts by North Korea next month, to coincide with the anniversary of the founding of the North Korean communist party and China’s all-important Communist Party Congress.

MIDDLE EAST

IAEA chief calls for clarity on disputed section of Iran nuclear deal
Reuters
9/26/17
The U.N. nuclear watchdog’s chief urged major powers on Tuesday to clarify a part of their nuclear deal with Iran dealing with technology that could be used to develop an atom bomb, an area Russia said the agency should leave alone.

Elimination of nuclear weapons is ‘moral responsibility,’ Iran says
Tehran Times
9/28/17
Abbas Araqchi, Iranian deputy foreign minister for legal and international affairs, said on Tuesday that total elimination of nuclear weapons is a “legal, political and moral responsibility.”

Iran points at US and warns of new nuclear arms race
Associated Press
9/27/17
Iran’s deputy foreign minister pointed at the United States in warning on Tuesday that a new nuclear arms race and new competition to modernize nuclear weapons are starting. Abbas Araghchi made the comments during a high-level meeting of the U.N. General Assembly to promote International Day for the Total Elimination of Nuclear Weapons, calling that goal “a legal, political and moral responsibility.”

RUSSIA/FSU/EUROPE

France Says Trump Method Not Best Way to Tackle North Korea Crisis
Reuters
9/27/17
France’s foreign minister said on Wednesday that Donald Trump’s verbal jousting with North Korea was perhaps not the best method to handle the nuclear crisis and urged the U.S. president to focus his attention on raising diplomatic pressure on Pyongyang.

Moscow fails to grasp reason why US claims that it ‘violated’ INF pact – diplomat
TASS
9/27/17
Washington has not so far provided any evidence substantiating its claims that Moscow violates the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty (INF Treaty), Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergey Ryabkov told reporters on Wednesday.

SOUTH ASIA

India Calls for Building Trust, Confidence Among Nuclear Weapon States
NDTV
9/27/17
India has called for a meaningful dialogue among all states possessing nuclear weapons to build trust and confidence and for reducing the salience of atomic weapons in international affairs.

MULTILATERAL ARMS CONTROL

Senior Russian diplomat calls nuclear arms prohibition treaty “mistake”
TASS
9/27/17
The Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons, opened for signing on September 20, is a mistake that creates a serious threat to the non-proliferation regime, Russia’s deputy UN envoy said on Tuesday.

U.S. NUCLEAR POLICY

Dunford: North Korea has not changed military posture despite rhetoric
The Hill
9/26/17
“While the political space is clearly very charged right now, we haven’t seen a change in the posture of North Korean forces and we watch that very closely,” Gen. Joseph Dunford, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, said Tuesday. “What we haven’t seen is military activity that would be reflective of the charged political environment.”

Trump’s Top General Says Iran Honoring Nuke Deal
Foreign Policy
9/26/17
The chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff on Tuesday joined other members of President Donald Trump’s cabinet in confirming that Iran is complying with the 2015 nuclear deal that has put a temporary halt to its nuclear weapons program.  

U.S. sending more ‘strategic’ military assets to South Korea to deter the North, Seoul says
Washington Post
9/28/17
[Chung Eui-young, national security adviser to President Moon Jae-in] did not define “strategic assets,” but South Korean officials usually use the term to refer to B-52 bombers, stealth warplanes, nuclear-powered submarines and aircraft carriers.

Poll: Nearly half support US military action against North Korea
Stars and Stripes
9/27/17
Almost half of the respondents either strongly supported or somewhat supported the notion of the U.S. taking military action against North Korea in an effort to end that country’s nuclear program. Thirty-three percent either somewhat opposed or strongly opposed such action with 19 percent reporting no opinion.

OPINION AND ANALYSIS

With Zapad Over, Is It Time for Conventional Arms Control in Europe?
War on the Rocks, Ulrich Kühn
9/27/17
Because NATO also decided at its 2016 Warsaw Summit to remain open to dialogue with Russia, and since Germany, in particular, has only recently made a renewed push for conventional arms control in Europe, it makes sense to ask whether a novel conventional arms control arrangement could provide for more security in addition to NATO’s deterrence and assurance approach. At the same time, to add a much-needed reality check, we must ask whether the political level of U.S.-Russian relations allows for a new approach.

The Myth of a ‘Better’ Iran Deal
Foreign Policy, Colin Kahl
9/26/17
Trump is undoubtedly attracted to the notion of tearing down yet another pillar of former President Barack Obama’s legacy, but it remains unlikely that he will just walk away from the JCPOA. Instead, the administration seems to be considering two other options meant to raise the heat on both Tehran and the international community to address the deal’s alleged shortcomings.

North Korea’s rhetoric is the same. It’s Trump’s reaction that makes this different
Washington Post, Anna Fifield and Emily Rauhala
9/27/17
Although the threats are colorful — on both sides — experts on North Korea say they are in keeping with North Korea’s history of bluster and do not signal a significant change in North Korea’s thinking. 

Trump stands at the edge of a cliff with Kim Jong Un. Time to start dealing.
Washington Post, David Ignatius
9/26/17
The first steps away from confrontation will have to be small. Trump’s rhetoric has probably torched the big bargain, for now. An initial statement to reduce tensions could be followed by other confidence-building measures, and then, eventually, by talks about de-nuclearization and reduction of U.S. forces in the region.

Friday's Top Nuclear Policy News

TOP NEWS

Having nuclear weapons ‘matter of life and death’ for North Korea: RIA
Reuters

Ending Iran nuclear deal would worsen North Korea situation: Kerry
Reuters

North Korea writes open letter to Parliament urging Australia to move away from Trump administration
Australian Broadcasting Corporation

Russia’s Lavrov warns one-sided changes could sink Iran deal
Associated Press

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