More than 50 experts from 21 countries, industry, and nongovernment organizations gathered virtually last month to explore opportunities to strengthen global political attention and engagement on nuclear security amid concerns that progress on nuclear security has slowed and high-level attention waned.
The 12th meeting of the Global Dialogue on Nuclear Security Priorities was held across three days (November 2, 5, and 10) and gave participants a forum to discuss steps needed to secure nuclear materials from terrorists and speed progress toward a comprehensive and effective global nuclear security system.
Participants include government officials; representatives from industry, academia, and NGOs; and other experts who work together to shape practical solutions to critical gaps in the global architecture. The November meeting (photo above shows the 11th Global Dialogue meeting, pre-pandemic) also included representatives from the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), the United Nations, and the European Commission.
The first Global Dialogue was convened by the Nuclear Threat Initiative in 2012 as a Track 1.5 process supporting the Nuclear Security Summits. These discussions are designed to sustain attention on and accelerate progress toward improved global nuclear security.
The November meeting focused on:
- Key findings from the 2020 Nuclear Security Index, including the warning that progress on nuclear security has slowed and recommendation of the need to sustain high-level attention on nuclear security;
- Opportunities for sustaining political attention on nuclear security and ways to take advantage of them, including the upcoming 2021 conference to review the amended Convention on the Physical Protection of Nuclear Materials (CPPNM) (see www.nti.org/cppnm for more);
- Strengthening engagement on nuclear security, particularly among countries without nuclear materials or nuclear facilities, by finding ways to talk about nuclear security that reflect different regional and national perspectives and priorities; and
- Strengthening nuclear security peer reviews to build confidence in nuclear security, including through IAEA International Physical Protection Advisory Service (IPPAS) missions.
The discussion about peer review was supported by a paper, Peer Reviews and International Assurances authored by John Barrett, an independent consultant.
The Global Dialogue project is led by NTI Vice President Laura Holgate and NTI Senior Director Samantha Neakrase. Learn more about the Global Dialogue at www.nti.org/globaldialogue.