Fuel cycle risks and restarting DPRK negotiations
Weekly Newsletters

Fuel cycle risks and restarting DPRK negotiations





12 November 2021




Dear Network Members and Colleagues,

This week, we publish a new Special Report on the risks of horizontal proliferation in the Asia-Pacific, written by John Carlson, and the latest Korea Times-APLN column, in which Professor Jun Bong-geun calls for restarting negotiations with the DPRK. We also share details of APLN’s activities at the Asia-Pacific Young Leaders Forum (YLF) and Seoul Peace Initiative Conference as well as recent member activities.








On 10 November, APLN published a Special Report by APLN Senior Associate Fellow John Carlson on how states pursuing nuclear energy programs may have latent weapons capabilities that lead to horizontal proliferation risks in the Asia-Pacific.Key recommendations include:

  • Proliferation-sensitive stages of the fuel cycle should be under multilateral rather than national control.
  • Supply of nuclear technology should take place under “black box arrangements” where the recipient is unable to replicate key aspects of the technology. 
  • New or deferred enrichment or reprocessing projects in the Asia-Pacific should not proceed. 
This report is part of APLN’s project on WMD threats in the Asia-Pacific. You can read earlier special reports in this series on our website.



Read the Special Report






On 10 November, APLN member Professor Jun Bong-geun, wrote for the Korea Times-APLN column in which he argues that it is time for negotiations to restart between the DPRK, ROK, and the United States. He proposes an interim deal with the DPRK based on the same model as the Iran deal, and urges the US administration to reach out more actively to the DPRK leadership.



Read the Korea Times-APLN Column




On 12 November, 2021, the APLN is hosting two panels at the 1st Asia-Pacific Young Leaders Forum (YLF) hosted by the Jeju Free International City Development Center (JDC) and organized by the East Asia Foundation (EAF). APLN Vice-Chair Professor Chung-in Moon, is speaking on the panel “Promoting Peace and Security in the Asia-Pacific: Young Leaders’ Perspectives,” and APLN Senior Associate Fellow Jessica Lee is speaking on the panel “Pathways to Peace on the Korean Peninsula.”YLF is a platform for young leaders to discuss common issues around the world such as peace, environment, youth and employment, and to create consensus, pursue peace, and realize sustainable development. The forum’s main theme for this year is: “The Role of Youth; Sustainable Development and Peace in Asia-Pacific.”

Sign up to watch the forum sessions here.








On 8-9 November, the Seoul Peace Initiative Conference was held in Seoul. On the first day, APLN Research Director Dr. Peter Hayes presented an ongoing APLN project Reducing the Risk of Nuclear Weapons Use in Northeast Asia (NU-NEA). On the second day, APLN Policy Fellow Dr. Tanvi Kulkarni gave a presentation titled Coexisting with Dangerous Weapons: Nuclear Weapons and Everyday Peace.




Watch the Day 1 Livestream here
Watch the Day 2 Livestream here





China and the US: Two paranoid giants at odds
On 9 November, APLN vice-chair Professor Chung-in Moon, Chair of the Sejong Institute, published his regular column for Hankyoreh, commenting on the US-China rivalry. He argues that the two countries are locked in a vicious circle of paranoia, with dire consequences for the region. Read more




Disarmament, public health, and pandemics
On 9 November, APLN member Rt Hon Helen Clark, former Prime Minister of New Zealand, spoke at an event hosted by Parliamentarians for Nuclear Non-Proliferation and Disarmament titled “Disarmament, public health, and pandemics.” Read more




Book Review: The Fractured Himalaya 
On 7 November, APLN member Professor C. Raja Mohan, Director of the Institute of South Asian Studies at the National University of Singapore, reviewed a recent book by former Indian Foreign Secretary and APLN member Nirupama Rao, titled The Fractured Himalaya. The review was published in Indian Express. Read more (soft paywall)




The Australia-UK-U.S. Submarine Deal
APLN member Professor Trevor Findlay, Principal Fellow at the School of Social and Political Sciences at the University of Melbourne, wrote a feature article for Arms Control Today, titled “The Australia-UK-U.S. Submarine Deal: Not Necessarily a Sure or a Good Thing“. He also spoke on the deal’s implications for global nuclear governance at the Australian Institute of International Affairs.



















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