Nuclear legacies in South Asia and the Pacific
Weekly Newsletters

Nuclear legacies in South Asia and the Pacific



24 May 2023

This week, on the 25th anniversary of India and Pakistan’s nuclear tests, we invited Indian and Pakistani scholars to reflect on where the relationship is headed in the next 25 years. We publish the first video poem by Dorell Ben, winner of APLN’s Pacific Islands Creative Competition, and Toshio Sano speaks of the urgency to protect nuclear power plants in Ukraine.

It is also not too late to sign up for our online seminar on how to keep nuclear memories and consciousness alive in younger generations.

25 Years since South Asia’s Nuclear Tests

With 25 years passing since India and Pakistan tested nuclear weapons, APLN asked four scholars from the two nuclear-armed countries, “Where do you see the India-Pakistan nuclear dynamics heading in the next 25 years?”

Debak Das, Ali Mustafa, Ruhee Neog, and Sitara Noor predict that the historically fraught relationship will be shaped by new forces including emerging technologies, climate change, and the US-China competition.

Read the Pulse

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Keeping Nuclear Memories Alive

Memories of Cold War nuclear near-misses and nuclear testing are fading as time passes and their significance is being forgotten. How can younger generations remain conscious of the risks and costs of nuclear weapons without having lived through this experience?

This Friday 26 May, 9am KST (Thursday 25 May, 8 pm EDT), APLN and the International Student/Young Pugwash (ISYP) will co-host a roundtable to discuss educating the next generation and the public on nuclear weapons risks and how to make this effective and impactful, keeping nuclear memories and consciousness alive.

Speakers are Mililani Fanviet, MA candidate, Center for Pacific Islands Studies, University of Hawai’i at Mānoa; Kazuha Suehiro, Graduate student School of Global Humanities and Social Sciences, Nagasaki University; Colleen Moore, Advocacy Director, Women Cross DMZ. Discussants are Dorell Ben, artist and researcher, Fiji; and Haruka Noishiki, reporter at Yomiuri Shimbun.

Register for the event

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Pacific Islands Creative Competition:
Blood in the Water


Dorell Ben, a Gujarati-Rotuman artist and researcher from Fiji, explores themes of legacy, ancestry, and the ocean in “Blood in the Water,” the first in a series of videos produced by the winners of the APLN 2022 Pacific Islands Creative Competition on “Nuclear Weapons and the Climate Crisis.”  This powerful video complements her award-winning poem and art series titled “Blood in the Water.”

Dorell says of her original winning work, “Blood in the Water is open to so many interpretations considering our climate issues, and the constant battles to return sovereignty to our Indigenous people. The series is also painted with watercolours and are labelled accordingly to the types of waters: 1. Blood; 2. Ocean; 3. River; 4. Tears; and 5. Water.”  

Read more about the project

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Russian Aggression Against Ukraine: Impact on Nuclear Issues

Toshio Sano argues that protecting Ukraine’s nuclear power plants should be a priority and suggests measures to prevent further deterioration of nuclear security and safety. Measures include increasing international support for enhancing Ukraine’s security infrastructure, providing technical assistance to improve safety measures at its power plants, strengthening IAEA safeguards, diplomatic outreach to Russia, and UN peacekeeping efforts.

Read the Policy Brief

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Calls for Submissions on Essay Contest
on “Nuclear Weapons Free Future” for Youth

The Research Center for Nuclear Weapons Abolition, Nagasaki University (RECNA), with the support of the Nagasaki Shimbun, invites individuals between the ages of 16 and 29 to submit an essay on a “Nuclear Weapons Free Future.”

The two winning essays will be published in the Nagasaki Shimbun newspaper and the winning authors will be invited to participate in the award ceremony in Nagasaki. Please submit your essay in PDF format by e-mail to
The deadline is July 31, 2023.

Read about the competition

Tatsujiro Suzuki, Vice Director and Professor of the Research Center for Nuclear Weapons Abolition at Nagasaki University, discussed the G7 summit in Hiroshima in an interview with BBC World, and emphasised the importance of never using nuclear weapons, and ending the war in Ukraine.

APLN has more than 130 members from 20 countries in the Asia-Pacific. Below we feature some of their contributions to security debates in the region and beyond.

The latest APLN member activities can be found on the APLN website.

See all member activities

India, ASEAN Hold First Maritime Exercises

Rajeswari Pillai Rajagopalan, Director of the Centre for Security, Strategy, and Technology, writes on the first India-ASEAN maritime exercise and points out that India has long used its navy to build ties with maritime nations in the Indo-Pacific, but this exercise steps up collaboration by tying up with ASEAN as a group.

The Gamble of AUKUS: Eroding the Rules of Nuclear Non-Proliferation?

Karla Mae G. Pabeliña, APLN Associate Fellow, argues that while the strategic rationale for the development of Australia’s own deterrence capabilities is understood, the actions of all states must strengthen the nuclear non-proliferation regime, mitigate risks, and be in conformity with the goal of achieving a world free from nuclear weapons.

Does Yoon’s Year of Values Diplomacy Deserve a Passing Grade?

Chung-in Moon, APLN Vice Chair, writes in his opinion column for The Hankyoreh that if South Korea’s President Yoon Suk-yeol continues to struggle to find a sensible balance between values and the national interest and to open a new horizon for crisis management and preventive diplomacy, his national security policy and foreign policy seem doomed to fail.

[JPN] G7 Hiroshima Summit: Pursuing Nuclear Disarmament, Not Nuclear Deterrence

Fujiwara Kiichi, Professor of International Politics at the University of Tokyo, writes for Asahi Shimbun and argues that understanding the consequences of nuclear weapon use and acknowledging the sacrifices serves as the starting point for nuclear disarmament. What is needed now is not an overreliance on nuclear deterrence, but rather a choice to achieve peace without relying on nuclear deterrence.

Lack of Communication Between US and China: How Dangerous Could It Be?

Tong Zhao, Senior Fellow at the Nuclear Policy Program of the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, was interviewed by DW News regarding the lack of communication between the US and China and its potential to escalate the likelihood of conflict over Taiwan.

What Protests in Pakistan Against Imran Khan’s Arrest Mean for China

C. Uday Bhaskar, Director of the Society for Policy Studies (SPS), New Delhi, argues that public anger at the previously sacrosanct institution of the army, which Beijing has close links with, could risk Chinese interests in Pakistan, including the belt and road ‘economic corridor’. 



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