The ICJ Advisory Opinion on nuclear weapons and international humanitarian law

Panel presentation at the side event on legal aspects of nuclear disarmament at the UN General Assembly First Committee, October 2016.

By Dr Gro Nystuen

The ICJ Advisory Opinion on the lawfulness of nuclear weapons was given 20 years ago, and there has been very different opinions as to whether it clarified or confused the question of how nuclear weapons are regulated by international law, and particularly international humanitarian law. Both from a legal and a political perspective, the Opinion has played and continues to play a key part in the discussions on nuclear disarmament.

Gender, development and nuclear weapons

Shared goals, shared concerns

By ILPI and UNIDIR

This study discusses the relationship between nuclear weapons and gender—how and why the two are connected, both to each other, and to shared global agendas such as sustainable development.

The perfect storm

The 71st United Nations General Assembly will provide a test of leadership over the future of a new initiative for nuclear disarmament

By Tim Caughley

‘Sadly, many countries continue to include nuclear deterrence in their security doctrines. But recent developments have shown that nuclear weapons do not ensure peace and security. Rather, their development and possession has become a major source of international tension.’

OEWG Observations

The Open-ended Working Group (OEWG) established late last year by the UNGA for ‘taking forward multilateral nuclear disarmament negotiations’ recently concluded the second of its three 2016 sessions. Several aspects of its work warrant reflection as the dust settles.

By Tim Caughley

A feature of the most recent session of the OEWG was its refreshing inter-activity—at least, by comparison to the set-piece monologue of other forums in which nuclear disarmament is discussed such as the Conference on Disarmament (CD), the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT), United Nations General Assembly (UNGA), and United Nations Disarmament Commission (UNDC).

Concrete legal measures and norms to attain and maintain a world without nuclear weapons (2)

This blog contains comments made by Magnus Løvold during the National Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies workshop on implementation of the 2013 Council of Delegates Plan of Action, in Geneva, 30 April – 1 May, ahead of the May sessions of the open-ended working group on taking forward multilateral nuclear disarmament negotiations

By Magnus Løvold

The question of how to implement some or all of the elements identified in the UNIDIR–ILPI study, ‘A prohibition on nuclear weapons: A guide to the issues’, has been intensely debated over the last years. In fact, in diplomatic disarmament forums, there is a tendency to place more emphasis on questions of process than on questions of legal content, and this is something that we, with our study, have attempted to rectify.

Concrete legal measures and norms to attain and maintain a world without nuclear weapons (1)

This blog contains comments made by Tim Caughley during the National Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies workshop on implementation of the 2013 Council of Delegates Plan of Action, in Geneva, 30 April – 1 May, ahead of the May sessions of the open-ended working group on taking forward multilateral nuclear disarmament negotiations

By Tim Caughley

You might wonder why—in terms of this topic—it is even necessary to develop concrete legal measures and norms to attain and maintain a world without nuclear weapons.