Fifty years ago the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (Non-Proliferation Treaty) was signed. Ever since, the Treaty has helped to prevent the global spread of atomic weapons and thus has made a decisive contribution to peace and security. Even today the Non-Proliferation Treaty is the main international frame of reference for nuclear non-proliferation and efforts at nuclear disarmament.
However, the US withdrawal from the Iran nuclear agreement, North Korea’s nuclear build-up and the unresolved conflict between nuclear powers India and Pakistan are putting multilateral peace and security policy under severe strain. The nuclear threat seems bigger than ever, Russia is upgrading its nuclear weapons and the global zero commitment made by former US president Barack Obama now seems a long way off. Instead of disarming, many nuclear-weapons states are modernising their arsenals. Since September 2017 a treaty banning nuclear weapons has been open to signature that imposes a general ban on the possession of atomic weapons.
Against the background of a deteriorating security environment how can nuclear non-proliferation and disarmament be pursued effectively in a multi-polar world? How could the Non-Proliferation Treaty be meaningfully strengthened? And what should Germany do?
We shall discuss these and other questions with exciting guests from politics, academia and civil society.
First, however, Germany’s Foreign Minister Heiko Maas will present his ideas on the issue of disarmament and non-proliferation and the diplomatic challenges.
There will be simultaneous German–English translation.
With its annual Conference at the Tiergarten, the FES has since 2012 beein aiming to address and highlight new trends in international affairs. Drawing on its extensive global network of offices in around 100 countries, the FES seeks to facilitate dialogue between decision-makers, decision-shapers and decision-takers from around the world on some of the key topics of our times.
While FES’s international activities usually proceed without too much publicity, the Tiergarten conference is meant to combine an in-depth expert conference with a wider outreach to the public. To this end, a live debate between Members of Parliament, experts and civil society will bring the crucial questions of global governance and international politics to the attention of a broader German audience at the end of the conference.
The Tiergarten – A Venue for International Affairs and home of FES’s International Headquarters.
Kurt Beck, former Prime Minister and Chairman of the Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung
Heiko Maas, Federal Minister of Foreign Affairs