Project News

Majority of Americans Still Support the CTBT

By Alicia Sanders-Zakre

A new survey shows that 20 years after the opening for signature of the CTBT, the majority of Americans still support the test ban. This latest survey joins many other polls that have found high American support for the CTBT over the past six decades.

CTBTO Proves Relevancy at Symposium

By Sylvia Mishra

The Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty Organization (CTBTO) hosted its 2nd CTBT Science and Diplomacy Symposium from May 21 to June 1, 2018 at the Vienna International Center against the backdrop of significant geopolitical developments: the Trump administration’s withdrawal from the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), U.S. declaration of a summit meeting with North Korea and deteriorating U.S.-Russia relations. Understandably, the interest of policymakers, scholars and technical experts gathered at the symposium were focused on a few key questions – Will North Korea sign and ratify the CTBT as a sign of their intent on halting nuclear testing? Will the Trump administration impose sanctions on Iran? Will the United States resume nuclear testing as the Nuclear Posture Review released by the Trump administration argues that the United States “must remain ready to resume testing if necessary to meet severe technological or geopolitical challenges”? In such a scenario, what will be the reaction of Russia? What are the political implications for the CTBTO?

North Korea Reports Nuclear Test Site Closure

By Alicia Sanders-Zakre

Following a late April announcement by Kim Jong Un, North Korea announced on May 24 that it had destroyed its nuclear testing site at Punggye-ri.

Notable Read: Shutting Down Punggye-ri: Confirming Dismantlement of North Korea’s Nuclear-Weapon Test Site

By Alicia Sanders-Zakre

Tariq Rauf, an independent consultant for the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty Organization, makes the case for a CTBTO presence at the upcoming closure of the Punggye-ri test site in a May 13 article.

Notable Read: Test and Effect

By Alicia Sanders-Zakre

George Perkovich assesses the impact of India’s first nuclear tests, 20 years later, by reviewing then-Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee’s letter to U.S. President Bill Clinton explaining India’s rationale.

Notable Read: Make North Korea’s Nuclear Test Pause Permanent

By Alicia Sanders-Zakre

Jon Wolfsthal, Global Zero’s Nuclear Crisis Group director, recommends steps North Korea can take to build on its pledge to shut down its Punggye-ri test site and stop further nuclear weapons tests in a May 7 article for 38 North.

Punggye-ri Test Site Damaged, But Still Useable, Experts Contend

By Alicia Sanders-Zakre

Two different teams of Chinese geologists reported that North Korea’s sixth nuclear test damaged the mountain over the Punggye-ri test site, which North Korea promised to shut down in May. Neither research team concluded that the mountain damage rendered the site unusable, despite recent media reports to the contrary.

Five Chinese Test Detection Stations Certified

By Shervin Taheran

In just twelve months, China has certified its first five International Monitoring System (IMS) stations, of the twelve it is treaty-bound to certify in order to realize the completion of the global nuclear test detection system managed by the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty Organization (CTBTO).

China, as well as the United States, are two of eight countries left which need to ratify the CTBT for the 1996 treaty to enter into force. Both countries have signed, but not ratified, the treaty.