PNND report from IPU Assembly in Hanoi

Dear PNND members and friends,

After adopting the resolution Toward a Nuclear Weapon Free World: The Contribution of Parliaments in March 2014, the Inter Parliamentary Union (IPU) decided that the peace and security topic for its consideration for the subsequent year would be cyber warfare.

PNND made input into the IPU deliberations on the topic over the year, with a special focus on the links between cyber warfare and nuclear weapons risks. This included language on nuclear risk-reduction and disarmament for the draft IPU resolution on cyber warfare and three events at the 132nd IPU Assembly in Vietnam:

—    a screening of the movie The Man Who Saved the World
—    a panel discussion on Eliminating risks of nuclear war by accident, cyber-attack or conflict escalation
—    a ‘wave goodbye to nuclear weapons’ led by Saber Chowdhury who is IPU President and PNND Co-President

IPU waving goodbye to nuclear weapons
Waving goodbye to nuclear weapons

On April 1, IPU adopted the resolution Cyber warfare: A serious threat to peace and global security. The resolution aims to assist parliamentarians to understand the potential for cyber-attacks, the nature of such attacks, the law that should govern military use of cyberspace, and policy approaches to protect civilian infrastructures from cyber-attacks.

The resolution refers to nuclear weapons in two preambular paragraphs:

—    Aware that military ICT systems for the deployment and use of force are susceptible to acts of cyber warfare that could lead to third parties intercepting and deploying such systems to cause unauthorized, illegal and destructive use of force (...) and especially concerned that the hacking of nuclear weapon command-and-control systems could result in the unauthorized launch and detonation of nuclear weapons and cause unparalleled catastrophes”

—    Concerned about the suggestion by military planners that nuclear deterrence be maintained as an option for dealing with the existential threat of a cyberattack”

With regard to nuclear weapons, the resolution recommends that:

—    “parliaments from nuclear-weapon States call on their governments to rescind launch-on-warning policies, stand down nuclear weapons from high operational readiness and extend the decision-making time for nuclear-weapon use in order to prevent unauthorized activation and deployment of nuclear weapon systems, pursuant to the negotiation of agreements to prohibit the use of nuclear weapons and achieve their elimination”

For more information see World body of parliaments highlights cyberwar and nuclear risks. PNND will assist IPU member parliaments to implement the resolution, with a specific focus on the aspects relating to nuclear weapons.

The 132nd IPU Assembly also adopted a declaration on sustainable development goals (the Hanoi Declaration), a resolution on water governance, an emergency item resolution on terrorism and a resolution on international law as it relates to national sovereignty, non-intervention in internal State affairs and human rights.

The next IPU Assembly will be held in Geneva in October 2015, just after the PNND Assembly in Prague.


Alyn Ware
Alyn Ware
PNND Global Coordinator
On behalf of the PNND Coordinating Team

Parliamentarians for Nuclear Non-Proliferation and Disarmament (PNND) is a global network of legislators working on a range of initiatives to prevent nuclear proliferation and to achieve a nuclear weapons free world.   |   |

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