Uncategorized International Relations Security Foreign policy

NPT Review Conference / Shanghai Cooperation Organisation

CSS Analyses
CSS Analyses in Security Policy

The Center for Security Studies has just published two new policy briefs:

    • Oliver Thr√§nert analyzes the main issues to be discussed at the May 2010 Review Conference of the Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT). According to him, the challenges of the Iranian and North Korean nuclear programs make it difficult to achieve agreement. He also point out to the discord among state parties over whether to
      prioritize non-proliferation or disarmament.

  • Stephen Aris examines the role of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) in Central Asia. He argues that it is not as anti-western as you would think. Taking into account the growing importance of the SCO to the region, he writes, the West should not exclude a priori the idea of selective cooperation with the SCO on common security interests.

Grave Robbin,’ Climate Talkin’ (or not) and Skipped Bills

Photo: williac/flickr
Photo: williac/flickr

How they pulled it off, no one knows, but grave robbers managed to steal the body of former Cyprus president Tassos Papadopulous on Friday, a day before the anniversary of his death and as the islands two leaders meet yet again to attempt to hammer out a peace deal.

The hard-line Greek Cypriot died of lung cancer last year, 10 months after losing his quest to be re-elected in the first round of polling. Papadopulous was instrumental in calling for Greek Cypriots to reject a UN-sponsored peace deal in 2004 that would have paved the way for island reunification.

According to reports, the thieves managed to lift a 250kg stone covering the grave, dig down to the corpse and steal it.

This happened as Turkish Cypriot leader Mehmet Ali Talat and Greek Cypriot leader Dimitris Christofias start the latest in a line of meetings to work out a reunification plan, this time, with ‘The Elders.’

Three suspects were questioned and released.

Just goes to show literally how low folks can go.

In other news: Depending on who you read, developing nations are either threatening to walk out of the Copenhagen talks or have already done so.

The NY Times says:

“Jairam Ramesh, the chief negotiator for India, said that the Group of 77 developing countries had staged the temporary walkout because their representatives had grown frustrated with how conference leaders had been conducting negotiations.”

Update (16:41): Le Temps says they’re back. Thanks Jonas!

By the way, Tyler Brule has an excellent op-ed in the FT on consumer ‘eco’ fatigue.

And last but not least: A Genovese hotel is reportedly suing Al-Saadi Gaddafi for skipping out on a EUR 300,000 bill. Muammar’s son is on the town’s soccer football team.

Good luck with that.

Environment Internet

Climate Change Discussion Side-by-Side


For folks like me who are wading through both sides of the climate change argument, David McCandless’ side-by-side visualization of the views is heaven sent.

McCandless, who calls himself a ‘visual and data journalist,’ has gleaned publicly available information from global warming skeptics and those who say its real and placed them in an easily read format without input of his own views.

Hopefully, this will help spur the respectful dialogue the climate change discussion needs.

Uncategorized Environment

ISN Partners’ Copenhagen Specials

Image by CCAC North Library / flickr
Image by CCAC North Library / flickr

My colleagues and I have seen an impressive surge in publications on climate change in the run-up to the Copenhagen Summit.

This demonstrates just how widely relevant the issue of climate change¬†is. Across geographical and thematic research focus, a large part of the ISN’s partner institutes have published on the topic in the last few months.

Here is a small selection of what has come across our desks recently:






  • … and for many more, see publications classified under ‘climate change’ in the ISN digital library.

ISN Weekly Theme: Human Trafficking

A warning about the lure of trafficking / Photo: mvcorks/flickr
A warning about the lure of trafficking / Photo: mvcorks/flickr
According to the latest statistics at least 12 million people are caught in the cycle of human trafficking. Based on data from selected European countries, the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) says that 95 percent of the victims have also experienced physical or sexual violence.

If these stats aren’t depressing enough, the OSCE also says that prosecutions of trafficking cases have been at a standstill since 2001.

In the latest edition of ISN Podcasts, OSCE Special Representative and Co-ordinator for Combating Trafficking in Human Beings Eva Biaudet discusses how the Organization is tackling trafficking, our theme for this week, and the role the EU should play.

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