A roundtable on recent nuclear developments at the global level was organised at the Centre for International Strategic Studies (CISS) here on Tuesday. The subjects covered were Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) Preparation Committee (PrepCom) and other nuclear, non-proliferation and disarmament challenges and issues.
Dr. Tariq Rauf who is a consultant at CTBTO, was the guest speaker at the roundtable. Mehrunnisa Mehdi, a legal officer at CTBTO also spoke on the occasion. In his opening remarks, CISS Executive Director Ali Sarwar Naqvi noted that the upcoming NPT Review Conference (RevCon) in 2020 was important for Pakistan.
Covering a variety of issues related to Complete Test Ban Treaty (CTBT), Fissile Material Cut-off Treaty (FMCT), Nuclear Disarmament and focusing on the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JDPOA), the expert discussed the Iran Nuclear deal’s technical section of JCPOA in context with the upcoming decision by US President Donald Trump on the Iranian nuclear agreement.
Speaking on the issues, he also discussed the Fissile material cut-off treaty and verification issues associated with it as well. Dr. Tariq Rauf explained IAEA’s commitment to fair and neutral position in its reports as an international organisation. Mehrunnisa Mehdi explained the legal framework of the organisation and its limitations with regards to its jurisdiction over civilian nuclear programmes.
Dr. Rauf drew attention to Pakistan’s role in IAEA and highlighted that IAEA took pride in Pakistan as a member that not only it provides experts to IAEA but also provides nuclear safety and security training to the regional countries. He also underscored Pakistan’s role as an active observer state at the CTBTO.
He underlined the importance of signing CTBT for Pakistan and the benefits that Pakistan can harness from it. Dr. Rauf noted that there were rampant misconceptions pertaining to Pakistan’s signing the treaty, however by signing it Pakistan will only benefit from it as it will also help in technical training of scientists in IAEA and building of seismic centres in Pakistan. He was explained Pakistan’s position on CTBT by Ambassador Naqvi.
Speaking on Additional Protocol of IAEA, he explained that the Additional Protocol adopted by India is a country specific one as Indian is neither an NPT member nor does it follow the requirements of the protocol as it does not provide access to facilities. The speaking session was followed by discussion and an active Q&A session. The event was attended by diplomats, scholars, students and members of civil society.