The Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty Organization (CTBTO) reported that the Group of Eminent Persons (GEM) met in Seoul on June 25 and 26 to “rally support for the for the Treaty’s entry into force and to highlight the threat posed by nuclear weapons testing.”
The Group of Eminent Persons was established on September 26, 2013, and its members include current and former foreign ministers, prime ministers, defense ministers, and diplomatic leaders from all over the world. As previously reported by the Project for the CTBT, the GEM met in Stockholm on April 10-11, 2014.
The South Korean Foreign Minister Yun Byung-se opened the meeting by discussing how “it is crucial to prioritize the entry into force of the CTBT.” Byung-se also indicated that South Korea would host a “special high-level meeting to mark the 20th anniversary of the CTBT in 2016,” to promote entry into force of the CTBT.
According to a June 3 joint statement by U.S. and Pakistan at the seventh round of the U.S.-Pakistan Security, Strategic Stability, and Nonproliferation (SSS&NP) Working Group, Pakistan reaffirmed it’s support for Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty (CTBT) related resolutions in the United Nations General Assembly, and confirmed the stance that Pakistan will not be the first nation in the region to conduct a nuclear test.
To date, Pakistan has conducted two nuclear tests, on May 28 and May 30, 1998. Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif later affirmed that the tests had been carried out in reaction to India’s nuclear tests earlier that month.
The National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) recently led an experiment designed to improve the United States’ ability to detect underground nuclear explosions using conventional and advanced detection technology. This experiment was the fourth in a series of experiments conducted since 2011.
The experiment tested many detection tools, such as: high-resolution accelerometers, infrasound, seismic, explosive performance, electromagnetic, ground-based LIDAR (light detection and ranging), digital photogrammetry data, and satellite-based interferometric synthetic aperture radar (InSAR).
On April 27, the States Party to the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT) began their month-long review of the treaty since the 2010 NPT Review Conference.
Over the first few days of the conference, dozens of states and groups of states expressed their strong support for the entry into force of the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty (CTBT) and of the full development of the verification regime. Excerpts are available online.