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Plesch, Dan (2008) 'Introducing the Concept of a Weapons of Mass Destruction Free Zone.' International Relations, 22 (3). pp. 323-329.

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This Forum arises from a new research programme at the Centre for International Studies and Diplomacy (CISD) at the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS) centred on `Disarmament and Globalisation', of which the Middle East Weapons of Mass Destruction Free Zone (ME WMDFZ or `the Zone') project is the first fruit. The issue of WMD is one of the most politically sensitive and diplomatically intractable problems in the region. The project is designed as applied international relations. Through public policy development and international dialogue both governments and civil society are engaged in a form of twin-track diplomacy. The central challenge has been to explore the UN Security Council and General Assembly's objective of freeing the region of WMD. While the majority of contributions to the Forum focus on the core proposal, there are also general reflections on the problems of arms control and disarmament agreements in contemporary international relations theory and practice. Many contributions discuss the requisite political conditions, but there is a strong focus on the mechanisms needed for this particular security regime. These include the verification and monitoring system, confidence- and security-building measures and the WMD—conventional weapon dynamic in the region. To date, political circumstances have more or less precluded negotiations even at a basic stage. The weak diplomatic interest in the Zone is echoed in the few studies and conferences on the topic. This project amplifies the concerns of the international community.

Item Type: Journal Article
Keywords: arms control • biological weapons • chemical weapons • diplomacy • disarmament • Iran • Israel • Middle East • nuclear weapons • Persian Gulf • regional security • second-track diplomacy • United Nations • weapons of mass destruction • WMD • Zone
SOAS Departments & Centres: Departments and Subunits > Interdisciplinary Studies > Centre for International Studies & Diplomacy
ISSN: 00471178
DOI (Digital Object Identifier):
Date Deposited: 05 Oct 2009 14:02
Related URLs: (Organisation URL)

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