ARMS CONTROL & DISARMAMENT
link to Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban
The Bulletin of Atomic Scientists' Doomsday Clock moved 5 minutes closer
to midnite due to the Indian and Pakistani nuclear tests
entered the world's vocabulary because of Picasso's
tumultuous portrait and because this was history's
first air bombardment of an undefended town, aimed solely
at terrorizing civilians.
crumbling reactor in Georgia
September 17, 1998
BURKINA GETS MINES BAN GOING
Demining work in Angola - one of the countries worst
affected by mines
Burkina Faso has become the 40th state to ratify
the anti-landmines treaty, enabling the agreement to come into effect in
six months' time.
The treaty was signed in December last year by
However, UN officials said the pact - known as
the Ottawa convention - needed to be ratified by 40 nations and their parliaments
before it could come into force.
In a statement, the UN Secretary-General Kofi
Annan said: "Today, the world has taken a step toward becoming a safer
and more humane
He added that the treaty "will have far-reaching
implications for both mine-affected and mine-producing countries."
The head of the UN's childrens' agency, Unicef,
described the step as an historic moment.
Under the convention, countries must stop the
use and production of landmines, destroy the stockpiles they already have
over the next four years and clear mined areas within 10 years.
Refusal to sign
However, the United States has so far refused
to ratify it, as have Russia and China, the world's biggest producers of
They have argued that mines are a legitimate defensive
weapon, although they have promised not to export them.
The Red Cross estimates that there are 120 million
mines across the world, and that they kill or maim someone every 20 minutes.
Most are deployed in developing countries, where
they prevent large tracts of land being used for agriculture and other
A significant proportion of the victims of mines
September 1, 1998
MISSILE TEST BY NORTH KOREA: DARK OMEN FOR WASHINGTON
By STEVEN LEE MYERS
WASHINGTON -- North Korea's test of a medium-range missile capable
of reaching targets in Japan and beyond represents a technological breakthrough
that has raised new fears of the spread of ballistic missiles,
administration officials and arms control experts said on Monday.
With North Korea's record of exporting missiles and related
technology to countries like Iran, Pakistan and Syria, the officials and
experts said, they worry that more advanced, longer-range missiles are
now within the reach of less developed countries.
September 4, 1998
JAPAN COULD LAUNCH MILITARY STRIKE
Japan has said it could respond
with a military strike if it came under attack from North Korea.
Speculation is growing that Pyongyang is about to launch another
missile, after it test-fired a rocket across Japanese territory on Monday.
The director general of the Japanese Defence Agency, Fukushiro
Nukaga, said said the peace constitution might allow a military strike
against North Korea, if necessary, "rather than just sitting and waiting
But he added: "the greatest political responsibility will be
to solve the matter peacefully."
The Japanese constitution says its people "renounce war as a
sovereign right of the nation and the threat or use of force as a means
of settling international disputes".
Additional measures considered
Japan has placed its forces on increased alert after North Korea
fired a new medium-range missile over its territory on Monday.
Tokyo has also suspended food aid and all flights to North Korea,
and postponed a deal to build nuclear
The Japanese Foreign Minister, Masahiko Komura, said his government
is considering "additional measures" against North Korea.
Japanese navy searched for remains of the missile
September 4, 1998
LAND MINE CLEAR-OUT 'IN
YEARS RATHER THAN DECADES'
More land mines are taken being out than planted says
A NEW STUDY SAYS THERE ARE FEWER ANTI-PERSONNEL
LANDMINES SCATTERED THROUGHOUT THE WORLD THAN PREVIOUSLY THOUGHT - AND
THE AIM OF CLEARING THEM IS ACHIEVABLE IN YEARS, RATHER THAN DECADES.
The report, by the US State Department, concedes
that the problem is still huge. It said there are up to 70 million mines
planted in 60 countries.
But the report said this was far fewer than previous
estimates which put the figure at more than 100 million.
Assistant Secretary of State, Rick Inderfurth,
told reporters he believes the problem can be solved by 2010, consistent
with the time frame
set by President Bill Clinton.
The mine problem is considered to be WORST IN
12 COUNTRIES: AFGHANISTAN, BOSNIA, CAMBODIA, CROATIA, ERITREA, IRAQ (KURDISTAN),
MOZAMBIQUE, SOMALIA, SUDAN, NICARAGUA AND NAMIBIA.
But the report said mine-clearance work in Afghanistan,
Angola and Cambodia had significantly reduced casualty figures.
More taken out than planted
Land mines are not being planted in the ground
as rapidly as once thought and "by most expert assessments, more land mines
in fact are being taken out of the ground than are being planted," the
The US State Department also found that "the mobilisation
of international attention and resources for humanitarian de-mining is
accelerating solutions and proving that concerted international intervention
does dramatically reduce the carnage of land mines to civilians."
Mr Inderfurth said the US has trained over 1,600
people in Africa, Latin America and Bosnia on mine awareness and related
skills and has spent $263m in removing mines since 1993.
Unconventional methods also have been brought
to bear in the struggle. Comic books, for example, are used to educate
people about land
Dogs are useful not only in detecting land mines
but also in verifying that formerly mine-laden areas have been fully cleared
The US Defence Department is even researching
ways to replicate the way a dog's nose detects mines, Pentagon officials
The report updates one produced by the State Department
in 1994 when the campaign to rid the world of antipersonnel land mines,
which take a huge toll on civilians, was just building steam.
Since then, the International Campaign to Ban
Land Mines - aided by high-profile support from the late Princess Diana
and others - has won a Nobel peace prize for its success in rallying public
opinion and helping gain passage of an international treaty banning land
The US has made the issue a priority but refused
to join more than 120 countries in a treaty to ban land mines.
The administration contends that mines along the
demilitarised zone in Korea deter North Korea from attacking South Korea
and help protect the 37,000 US soldiers deployed in the region.
October 31, 1998
Iraq under spotlight at Security Council
Iraq: No more co-operation with UN monitors or inspectors
The UN Security Council is holding an emergency meeting
in New York to discuss Iraq's announcement breaking off all co-operation with
United Nations arms inspectors.
BBC UN correspondent Rob Watson says it is unlikely
the Security Council will do more than condemn Baghdad's move.
White House officials are also considering their
The Iraqis have been refusing to allow inspectors
do to any work in the country since early August, but correspondents say
the latest move is an escalation in the continuing dispute over inspections.
The new move follows a decision on Friday by the
UN Security Council to review Baghdad's compliance with UN resolutions
- but without any guarantee that this would lead to a lifting of sanctions
The statement said Iraq has "broken off all cooperation
with Unscom and its chief and stopped all its activities in Iraq, including
the 'monitoring operations' as from today (Saturday)".
The decision "does not concern the International
Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) which can continue its activities ... on condition
that they are totally independent from those of Unscom."
The action intensifies the reduction of Iraqi
cooperation with the United Nations.
BBC Correspondent Richard Downes says the Iraqi
statement contains a forceful request for the sacking of the Unscom chief,
Richard Butler. Mr Butler is currently in the United States.
On 5 August Iraq suspended inspections by both
the Special Commission and the IAEA teams that were searching for new sites
that might contain illegal weapons. But monitoring activities by the two
bodies were allowed to continue.
CHRONOLOGY OF THE IRAQI CRISIS
The countdown to crisis has stopped, then started
The Gulf War ended at 0500 GMT on February 28,1991.
The US-led coalition began a ceasefire and Baghdad ordered its troops to
stop fighting. But since then, Iraq has remained at loggerheads with the
United Nations and the Americans in particular.
There have been arguments over the work of the
United Nations Special Commission in Iraq (UNSCOM) weapons inspectors,
oil, the no-fly zones, and the rights of Shi'ite and Kurdish people living
in the region. But the latest crisis stems from Iraq's exasperation with
sanctions imposed after the Iraqi invasion of Kuwait in 1990.
The UN put forward a series of proposals designed
to ensure that Iraq is fulfilling its commitments to destroy weapons of
mass destruction in June this year. Their elimination is a pre-condition
for the lifting of UN sanctions which have crippled the economy by banning
the country's economic mainstay - the free sale of oil.
KEY DATES AND STORIES
October 29, 1997 - Iraq bars American weapons
inspectors from the country after the UN Security Council passes a resolution
threatening to stop Iraqi officials travelling abroad. Iraq expels Americans
October 31, 1997 - Iraq reiterates that it is
ready, if necessary, to face US military action over its decision to expel
the weapons inspectors. Russia and France believe a solution can be found
to the crisis. Russia rejects use of force Iraq urged to backdown
November 3, 1997 - Iraq warns it will shoot down
U2 spy planes flying over its territory in support of UN weapons inspectors.
Iraq threatens US planes
November 20, 1997 - Russian Foreign Minister,
Yevgeny Primakov, brokers a compromise in the crisis between Iraq and the
UN. The US, Russia, France, Britain, China meet through the night to work
out the deal which allows the inspectors to return to Baghdad. However,
UNSCOM inspectors return only to find they are barred from presidential
sites. Iraq settlement seen as "brilliant victory" for Russian diplomacy
January 2, 1998 - A grenade attack is launched
against the headquarters of UNSCOM in Baghdad. The Iraqi regime condemns
the attack saying it was the act of saboteurs hostile to Iraq.
January 13, 1998 - Iraq blocks an inspection by
an American dominated team. It accuses the leader of the team, Scott Ritter,
of spying for the US. Iraq bans weapons inspectors
January 23, 1998 - Richard Butler, UNSCOM chairman,
addresses the UN security Council and presents a bleak report. Iraq will
provide no new information on its weapons programme. UN discusses continuing
crisis over Iraq
January 28, 1998 - President Clinton delivers
his State of the Union address, and says the US is prepared to carry out
a military attack against Iraq. Clinton address applauded
February 9, 1998 - The Arab League puts forward
proposals to end the crisis. It says the inspection teams should be chosen
by UN Secretary General, Kofi Annan. Arab bid to solve Iraqi crisis
February 11, 1998 - The Iraqi government supports
a Russian proposal which would give UNSCOM access to eight presidential
sites to carry out one-off inspections. The idea is rejected by both the
US and Britain. Iraqi concessions 'unacceptable'
February 13, 1998 - The United States insists
it will not walk away from stopping Iraq developing weapons of mass destruction,
and Russian objections would not prevent use of force. Russia says diplomatic
effort should not end before Kofi Annan visits Baghdad. Russia warns US
against military action
February 17, 1998 - Kofi Annan wins Security Council
approval for a peace mission to Baghdad but the US reserves the right to
disagree with the results. President Clinton says a solution must ensure
unfettered access for weapons inspections. Clinton 'prepared to act'
February 20, 1998 - Annan arrives in Baghdad,
saying he has a "sacred duty" to try to defuse the crisis. In Jordan, a
bystander is killed in clashes between police and a crowd of worshippers
demonstrating in support of Iraq. Annan arrives on 'sacred' peace mission
February 22, 1998 - The UN secretary general
holds a three-hour meeting with Saddam Hussein, and the UN later announces
a deal on weapons inspections. The US says it will await Kofi Annan's formal
report to the Security Council. US keeps veto option open
February 23, 1998 - Kofi Annan formally announces
the agreement in joint news conference with Tariq Aziz. Iraq says it was
diplomacy, not sabre-rattling, that helped conclude the agreement. Annan
signs deal with Iraq
February 26, 1998 - American Republicans
claim that President Clinton has handed Washington's policy on Iraq over
to the United Nations. US:Can Clinton sell Iraqi deal?
February 27, 1998 - Richard Butler endorses the
agreement, while Kofi Annan tells UN staff not to be disheartened by criticism
of the deal. UN weapons inspector supports Annan's Iraq deal
March 3, 1998 - The United States and Britain
say that the UN Security Council has reached agreement on a resolution
warning Iraq of "severest consequences" if it fails to honour the agreement.
March 26, 1998 - UN weapons experts accompanied
by diplomats begin a two-week series of inspections of Iraqi presidential
April 3, 1998 - Inspectors complete their initial
search of the eight presidential sites with a visit to President Saddam
Hussein's main palace in Baghdad. Initial searches end
April 9, 1998 - A UN report claims Iraq is continuing
to hold back information about its germ warfare programme. Iraq still holding
back on weapons
April 17, 1998 - UN inspectors say they have made
no progress in verifying whether Iraq has destroyed its weapons of mass
April 18, 1998 - The Iraqi Foreign Minister, Mohammed
Saeed al-Sahaf describes UN inspectors report as "baseless and boring"
and calls for a time limit to be set on inspections. Iraq calls for time
April 28, 1998 - UN decides that it is too early
to lift sanctions against Iraq, renewing the embargo for another six months.
But the US acknowledges progress in the access to presidential and sensitive
sites. Iraq sanctions stay
May 1, 1998 - In an open letter to the Security
Council, Iraq warns of grave consequences if UN sanctions against it are
May 20, 1998 - Weapons inspectors resume their
search for Iraqi chemical warheads.
May 26, 1998 - Richard Butler says he intends
to draw up a list of outstanding issues that must be addressed by Baghdad
to see sanctions lifted by October. On the same day the US announces it
is to cut its forces in the Gulf. Official sets out sanctions 'road map'
US cuts Gulf forces
June 11, 1998 - After presenting proposed disarmament
measures to the Security Council, UN weapons inspectors arrive in Baghdad
for talks aimed at ending international sanctions.
June 15, 1998 - The UN and Iraq strike a two-month
deal which would verify disarmament and pave the way towards the lifting
of sanctions. UN secures disarmament deal Iraq welcomes UN deal
June 19, 1998 - The Security Council approves
a resolution allowing Iraq to spend $300m on importing spare parts to improve
its oil facilities. UN approves Iraqi oil spend Iraq warms to oil offer
June 24, 1998 - Richard Butler confirms reports
that traces of the nerve gas VX has been found in Iraqi missile fragments.
Iraq had always insisted it had not weaponised VX. UN confirms nerve gas
reports Iraq rejects nerve gas claims
June 30, 1998 - An American fighter plane opens
fire on an Iraqi missile site. The US Defence Department says the action
was taken after four British Tornado military jets were illuminated by
Iraqi radar. US plane targets Iraqi missile site Iraq condemns 'US aggression'
July 30, 1998 - Iraq warns that it will take unspecified
action unless the UN embargo is lifted. A statement issued after a meeting
of Iraqi leaders said the visit by Richard Butler the following week would
August 4, 1998 - Richard Butler leaves Baghdad
after talks collapse on proposals designed to ensure Iraq is fulfilling
its committments to destroy weapons of mass destruction. Tariq Aziz said
it was pointless becoming involved in an unending process to prove what
the Iraqis had already shown. Iraq arms talks collapse
September 29, 1998 - UN arms inspector Scott Ritter
tells the BBC why he left the international team investigating Iraq's weapons
of mass destruction. Inspector condemns UN
October 27, 1998 - Richard Butler, says tests
carried out by international scientists confirm that Iraq filled missile
warheads with the deadly nerve agent VX before the 1991 Gulf War. UN says
Iraq made deadly weapons
October 28, 1998 - The Iraqi army embarks on a
training exercise to enable hundreds of thousands of Iraqi citizens to
defend themselves. Iraqi army starts mass training
October 31, 1988 - The Iraqi leadership says
it has ceased all co-operation with investigations and monitoring by the
UN Special Commission. Iraq stops Unscom
November 10, 1988 The United States warns that
Iraq will be able to rebuild its weapons programme in a matter of months
unless the international community takes action over its obstruction of
UN weapons inspections. Iraq could rearm 'in months'
November 11, 1988 The United Nations withdraws
all non-essential personnel from Iraq, amid speculation that the United
States is preparing a military attack. UN withdraws staff from Iraq
August 27, 1998
UN WEAPONS INSPECTOR QUITS
Scott Ritter said the UN was making a mockery of its
A leading United Nations weapons inspector has
resigned, accusing the Security Council, the United States and the UN secretary
general of surrendering to the Iraqi leadership.
In his letter of resignation, Scott Ritter said
the Security Council's reaction to Iraq's decision earlier this month to
suspend co-operation with the inspection team made a mockery of its disarmament
In the letter, which is described as "explosive",
Mr Ritter accused the secretary general of allowing his
office to become a "sounding board" for Iraqi grievances.
Mr Ritter, an American, also accused the Iraqi
Government of lying to the world about the scope and nature of its weapons
Observers say his feelings are likely to be shared
by other weapons inspectors.
Accused of spying
Mr Ritter has been regularly been accused by the
Iraqis of spying for the United States.
In terms of the ceasefire which ended the Gulf
War in 1991, the UN established a Special Commission (UNSCOM) to monitor
the dismantling of Iraq's weapons of mass destruction.
In exchange for the lifting of sanctions, Iraq
was required to provide the UN with details of such weapons, to agree to
their dismantling, and to undertake not to develop any more weapons in
The present impasse over the weapons inspections
dates to early in August, when UN Chief Weapons Inspector Richard Butler
refused to comply with an Iraqi demand that he declare the country to be
free of weapons of mass destruction, before the UN inspectors had completed
Two weeks ago, the US State Department was reported
to have put pressure on Mr Butler not to make surprise weapons inspections
in Iraq, in order to ease the tensions between Washington and Baghdad.
However, both US Secretary of State Madeleine
Albright and Mr Butler denied these reports.
Wednesday, August 5, 1998
SADDAM HUSSEIN SUSPENDS
The Iraqi President Saddam Hussein has suspended
cooperation with United Nations weapons inspectors.
Saddam Hussein decided after a meeting with senior
officials to "completely suspend cooperation with the UN Special Commission
and the International Atomic Energy Agency," according to a government
However, the president said he would exempt UN
monitoring activities in Iraq from his decision on the condition that UN
"personnel carry out the monitoring strictly respecting Iraq's sovereignty,
security and its people's dignity."
The Iraqi parliament earlier voted unanimously
to freeze co-operation with the UN inspectors in protest at chief weapons
inspector Richard Butler's refusal to declare Iraq free of all weapons
of mass destruction.
UNSCOM UN inspection of Iraq's weapons of mass destruction
6-15-98 UN SECURES DISARMAMENT DEAL WITH IRAQ
The United Nations' chief weapons inspector, Richard Butler,
has reached agreement with the authorities in Baghdad on a two-month programme
to complete outstanding work on verifying Iraqi disarmament.
THE UN'S MANDATE
The job of surveillance
February 20, 1998
The terms of the ceasefire which ended the
Gulf War were made in United Nations Security Council Resolution 687 on
April 3 1991.
It set up a UN Special Commission (UNSCOM)
which, together with the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), was
to monitor the dismantling of Iraq's weapons of mass destruction. The work
of UNSCOM was approved through Resolution 715.
Iraq was required to accept unconditionally
the removal or rendering harmless of the specified weapons and missiles.
It also had to submit full details of the locations
of such weapons and undertake not to use, develop, construct or acquire
such weapons in the future.
Key UN Security Council resolutions::
Resolution 687 - the Gulf War ceasefire resolution
which formed UNSCOM. It called for the elimination of Iraq's weapons of
mass destruction, and authorised inspections to ensure compliance.
Resolution 715 - approved the plan for on-going
Resolution 778 - allowed the confiscation of up
to $500 million of oil-related Iraqi assets.
Resolution 986 - allowed Iraq to sell oil and
petroleum products abroad so that it could buy food and medicines for its
Resolution 1051 - approved the mechanism for monitoring
relevant Iraqi imports and exports pursuant to Resolution 715.
Resolution 1115 - demanded Iraq co-operate fully
with UNSCOM and postponed a review of sanctions.
Resolution 1137 - demanded Iraq reverse a decision
to expel UNSCOM inspectors.
Resolution 1154 - endorsed the agreement on UNSCOM
weapons inspections reched by Secretary General Kofi Annan.
Resolution 1175 - approved $300m spending for
spare parts for Iraqi oil facilities.
INDIA & PAKISTAN NUCLEAR TESTS
MAY 1998 - INDIA CONDUCTS ATOMIC BOMB TESTS
Pakistan: The launch of the Ghauri missile earlier this
month 4/6/98, Pakistan successfully tests a medium-range
missile capable of reaching
Banning the bomb
Build a bomb.
11 May 1998--India conducts three nuclear tests.
The Pioneer says India has arrived at superpower status 'with a bang'
Indian opposition groups have condemned the nuclear tests
Pakistani protesters march against the bomb
May 27, 1998---U.S. Forces a Delay in World Bank Loans to India
WASHINGTON -- The Clinton administration made good Tuesday on its
threat to make India pay for conducting five nuclear tests earlier this
forcing what the World Bank
called "an indefinite delay" on $865 million in World
Bank loans that would have
paid for an electric power grid and a range of other
projects throughout the
Indian Prithvi short-range missile
Pakistan successfully tests a medium-range missile capable
The Pakistani army on parade
Pakistanis burning Indian flag in protest of atomic bomb tests
Source: Jane's Defence Weekly, Institute of Peace Studies,
Institute of Strategic Studies.
Pakistan Conducts Five Nuclear Tests
out five nuclear tests on Thursday, Prime
Sharif said in a nationwide broadcast.
India's nuclear tests with five detonations of its
own on Thursday,
and said it was capping a long-range missile
warheads, escalating the arms race between the rival
have settled the score with India,'' said Pakistan
In his address,
Sharif chastised the international community for
sanction India, saying that Pakistan was left with no
to detonate its own nuclear devices.
an expansionist power,'' he said. ``The world should have sanctioned
... but they didn't.''
Demonstrators called for Pakistan to retaliate
Indians and Pakistanis celebrate their nuclear weapons
former Soviet Union is littered with nuclear sites causing
security and environmental worries. Constructing warheads led to
August 17, 1998
NORTH KOREA SITE AN A-BOMB PLANT, U.S. AGENCIES SAY
By DAVID E. SANGER
U.S. intelligence agencies have detected a huge
secret underground complex in North Korea that they believe is the centerpiece
of an effort to revive the country's frozen nuclear weapons program, according
to officials who have been briefed on the intelligence information.
The finding has alarmed officials at the White
House and the Pentagon, who fear that the complex may represent an effort
to break out of a 4-year-old agreement in which North Korea pledged to
give up its nuclear weapons program in exchange for billions of dollars
in Western aid.
The finding also follows a string of provocations
by the North, including missile sales to Pakistan and the incursion of
a small North Korean submarine carrying nine commandos off the South Korean
coast this year.
The North has said in recent months that the United
States is reneging on its side of the agreement because Congress has failed
to authorize tens of millions of dollars in fuel shipments for the North.
The shipments are the main American contribution to a $6 billion program,
under which South Korea, Japan and other nations are supposed to finance
a major electric energy program as a quid pro quo for the North's abandonment
of its ambitions to develop nuclear arms.
A senior administration official said the North
had not yet technically violated that accord, called the Agreed Framework,
because there is no evidence that Pyongyang has begun pouring cement for
a new reactor or a reprocessing plant that would convert nuclear waste
into bomb-grade plutonium. The accord explicitly bars that activity.
But spy satellites have extensively photographed
a huge work site 25 miles northeast of Yongbyon, the nuclear center where,
until the 1994 accord, the North is believed to have created enough plutonium
to build six or more bombs. Thousands of North Korean workers are swarming
around the new site, burrowing into the mountainside, American officials
Other intelligence, which the officials would
not describe, led the administration in recent weeks to warn important
members of Congress and the South Korean government in classified briefings
that they believed that the North intended to build a new reactor and reprocessing
center under the mountain. Intelligence estimates of how long it would
take to complete the project have ranged from two to six years, depending
in part on how much outside help is received.
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