Policy Brief No.134 - July, 2022 • By Tanvi Kulkarni
This report synthesises the analysis and discussions as part of a research project launched by the Asia-Pacific Leadership Network for Nuclear Non-Proliferation and Disarmament (APLN) and the Toda Peace Institute in 2021, examining the nuclear and defence dynamics between China, India, and Pakistan. Building on previous APLN papers and the Brookings ‘Strategic Chain’ report, this project seeks to map the contours of the China-India-Pakistan nuclear relationship, identifying the key drivers of conflict, as well as practical nuclear risk reduction, crisis stability, and confidence building measures. The project also aims to explore the possibility of a nuclear restraint regime that includes all three countries. At a workshop organised by the project in February 2022, experts from the Indo-Pacific region, including from China, India, and Pakistan, presented scholarly and policy analyses on the trilateral dynamics in Southern Asia.
Policy Brief No.133 - July, 2022 • By Andrew Futter
This Policy Brief considers the suggestion that we are arguably on the cusp of a new “nuclear age” where we will need to rethink the rules of the nuclear game and how we prevent nuclear use. We are living in an era of transition and uncertainty in the global nuclear order where nuclear security and nuclear risks are changing and the ways, ends and means devised to manage the nuclear condition are under pressure. This is the result of a technological, geopolitical and normative change and transformation across the nuclear ecosystem. Taken together, these developments are calling into question the way that we manage nuclear threats, and particularly how we think about strategic stability and arms control. While there have been periods of unsettling, rapid, and potentially revolutionary change in the global nuclear order in the past, today appears to be different because the phenomenon is so wide-spread, multifaceted, and because the challenges go right to the heart of how we think about and conceptualise the nuclear condition.
Policy Brief No.126 - March, 2022 • By Hugh Miall
This Policy Brief examines the prospects for averting war in the Taiwan Strait. President Xi Jinping’s warning that the US would be ‘playing with fire’ if it supported Taiwanese independence, made at the virtual summit with President Joe Biden on 15 November 2021, followed a number of moves by both the Trump and Biden administrations that appeared to increase US support for Taipei. In Taiwan, public support for independence remains high. Meanwhile both China and the US are ramping up their preparations for a possible military conflict. The February 2022 Russian invasion of Ukraine has raised existing tensions in the region. Can the underlying dispute over Taiwan be peacefully resolved? If not, can the relationships between China and Taiwan, and China and the US, be developed in such a way that their disputes can be managed in a more cooperative manner?
Policy Brief No.122 - January, 2022 • By Tariq Rauf
This Policy Brief focuses on important relevant issues and questions pertaining to the AUKUS plan to equip the Royal Australian Navy with nuclear-powered attack submarines (SSNs). The AUKUS states apparently have initiated non-transparent and secret discussions with the International Atomic Energy Agency on how best to take advantage of a “grey area” or “loophole” in IAEA comprehensive safeguards to exclude weapon-grade highly-enriched uranium from Agency safeguards. China and the Russian Federation have launched diplomatic fusillades across the bow of the IAEA’s Board of Governors criticising the AUKUS plan for providing nuclear-powered submarines to Australia. However the Agency responds, now is the time to further strengthen the effectiveness and improve the efficiency of the IAEA safeguards system, not to weaken it and not drive a fleet of nuclear-powered submarines through it.
Policy Brief No.120 - November, 2021 • By Tariq Rauf
This Policy Brief examines the case for a nuclear- and WMD-free zone in the Middle East. Given the infighting and discord among states of the region of the Middle East over many issues, it seems that the air has gone out of their balloon to achieve a Middle East Nuclear-Weapon-Free Zone; they seem content merely to make supportive noises but not to advance the process. The 2021 UN Middle East Conference in November 2021 and the NPT review conference in January 2022 provide further opportunities for the NPT states of the region of the Middle East, and other states, as well as international organisations in attendance, to discuss the various aspects of a potential future treaty that could garner the support of all states of the region, and commission the required technical inputs.