Tag: nuclear weapons

The Birth of a Treaty

A brief overview of mandates and models for negotiating multilateral agreements in the field of arms and disarmament

December 2016


In December 2016, a majority of the UN Member States voted to start a process of negotiation to prohibit nuclear weapons. By adopting resolution L.41, the United Nations General Assembly decided to “convene in 2017 a United Nations conference to negotiate a legally binding instrument to prohibit nuclear weapons, leading towards their total elimination”.[1]

The ICJ Advisory Opinion on nuclear weapons and international humanitarian law

Panel presentation at the side event on legal aspects of nuclear disarmament at the UN General Assembly First Committee, October 2016.

By Dr Gro Nystuen
18 October 2016

The ICJ Advisory Opinion on the lawfulness of nuclear weapons was given 20 years ago, and there has been very different opinions as to whether it clarified or confused the question of how nuclear weapons are regulated by international law, and particularly international humanitarian law. Both from a legal and a political perspective, the Opinion has played and continues to play a key part in the discussions on nuclear disarmament.

Legal perspectives on effective measures, provisions, and norms relating to nuclear disarmament

Remarks to the open-ended working group on taking forward multilateral disarmament negotiations, Geneva, 22.02.16.

By Dr. juris Gro Nystuen
  • I would like to thank the Chair, Ambassador Thani, for inviting me to participate in this panel. I am grateful for this opportunity to address the Open-Ended Working Group.
  • As the title suggests: my approach to this is that of international law – in 2014, we at ILPI produced a book entitled Nuclear Weapons under International Law, which maps existing international law relevant to nuclear weapons.

A prohibition on nuclear weapons

A guide to the issues


This study surveys various views on how to promote and achieve nuclear disarmament in the current security environment. It draws on our institutes’ previous work on nuclear weapons-related issues, for instance, as part of analysing the so-called ‘humanitarian impacts initiative’, the work of the Conference on Disarmament, and the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT).

Longing for Armageddon

A brief history of non-state actors’ pursuit and use of weapons of mass destruction

By Kjølv Egeland
2 June 2015

Super-villains armed with a weapon of mass destruction is the stuff of countless on-screen thrillers. But the prospect of non-state actors armed with such weapons is far from fantasy. Chemical and biological weapons have been used by terrorist organizations on several occasions, sometimes to devastating effects. Terrorists have been unsuccessful in their attempts at acquiring nuclear weapons, but not for a lack of trying. In this paper I examine the history of non-state actors’ pursuit and use of weapons of mass destruction (WMDs).

Humanitarian impact of nuclear weapons

The consequences of using nuclear weapons

By Stein-Ivar Lothe Eide, Torbjørn Graff Hugo and Christian Holmboe Ruge

“The risk of a nuclear weapon detonation is arguably greater today than it was at the height of the Cold War,” says Norway’s Minister of Foreign Affairs Espen Barth Eide in the foreword to a new publication compiled by ILPI.

Summarizing the presentations made at the Conference on the Humanitarian Impact of Nuclear Weapons, the report presents some of the consequences that can be expected from any use of nuclear weapons, and explains in brief terms why the international community would struggle to provide adequate, timely and appropriate assistance to those affected by any such disaster.