The APLN convened a second South Asia and China Regional meeting in Colombo on 18-20 February 2018 in partnership with the Lakshman Kadirgamar Institute (LKI) of International Relations and Strategic Studies, Sri Lanka’s premier foreign policy think-tank.
Our discussion focussed on 3 core issues:
• ‘The China, India, Pakistan Nuclear Dilemma’, which explored developments in the evolution of the chain of nuclear strategic relations between Pakistan, India China, and beyond; examined the risks of unintended consequences cascading through the chain; and options for breaking away from the habits of the past and creating mechanisms for reducing nuclear threats and risks.
• ‘The Global Outlook: Strategies for kick starting disarmament and curbing proliferation’ which considered measures to support the JCPOA addressing Iran’s nuclear program; examined options for dealing with nuclear issues on the Korean Peninsula; and considered what South Asia could do separately and collectively to restart nuclear disarmament processes.
• ‘Strengthening the global Non-Proliferation consensus’ which examined the NPT Review process; the relationship between the NPT and the Nuclear Ban Treaty; and bridging the gap between the supporters and opponents of the Nuclear Ban Treaty.
As set out in the report, several practical recommendations arose and will be taken forward by APLN. The meeting was also an opportunity for APLN Members in the region to discuss our outreach strategies and review work plans. A full report of the meeting is here.
In conjunction with the meeting, LKI arranged a public lecture by Co-Convenor Ramesh Thakur on “Nuclear Policy and Prospects for Disarmament in the New World Order,” and a follow-on panel discussion amongst APLN Members, moderated by Jayantha Dhanapala, former UN Under-Secretary-General for Disarmament Affairs. The event was well attended and stimulated a lively audience discussion. The event also stimulated media coverage which will help raise the profile of nuclear issues on Sri Lanka.
A full report of that event, including a video of the speech and panel discussion, can be found at http://www.lki.lk/events/lkis-dinusha-panditaratne-on-nuclear-disarmament-at-aplns-south-asia-and-china-regional-meeting-2018/.
This summary and report were prepared by John Tilemann, Research Director of APLN.