Status: Open

Interview Of Dr Orlov On Nonproliferation Issues

February 24, 2022

Moscow. FEBRUARY 24, 2022. PIR PRESS. “The emergence of new nuclear states will undoubtedly become a new challenge for Russia, and in some cases, a direct threat. For example, the Israeli and Indian nuclear arsenals are not regarded as threats, but are challenges. But the appearance of nuclear weapons in Ukraine, of course, will be a threat to Russian security, the same can be said with regard to Turkey, Saudi Arabia, Iran. PIR Center is currently working on the “New Nuclear Nine” project, which examines the prospects for the appearance of new states on the world map in the next 5-10 years. The region of East Asia is of the greatest concern: Japan, the Republic of Korea. Japan has the most advanced technological capabilities, but the risks are not very high. In the Republic of Korea, these risks are higher, because high political risks and the fact that work on delivery systems is underway are added to high technological capabilities. The appearance of nuclear weapons in the Republic of Korea would be a serious challenge for us, a blow to the architecture of international security due to a direct violation of the NPT.” – commented the director of the PIR Center Vladimir A. Orlov.

Director of the PIR Center, Vladimir A. Orlov, gave an interview to Adlan R. Margoev, a researcher at the MGIMO Center for Middle Eastern Studies, and Darya A. Selezneva, a junior researcher at the IMEMO Center for International Security of the Russian Academy of Sciences. The interview was conducted as part of a study on the impact of the confrontation of the great powers on the prospects of the nuclear nonproliferation regime conducted by Adlan Margoev and Darya Selezneva.

At the beginning of the interview, Vladimir A. Orlov answered the question about the guarantors of the nonproliferation regime and the growing role of China in regulating these issues: “When we talk about the guarantors of the nonproliferation regime, I imagine a double matryoshka doll. The first part of the matryoshka is a troika: Russia, the USA, the UK. And our tendency to forget about the UK, talking only about Russia and the United States as the main guarantors– is a mistake. Not just because it is the depositary of the NPT, but also because the British retain effective, often non-public tools to influence violators of the non-proliferation regime. So, since imperial times, London has preserved a good system of collecting information, which is lacking today, for example, in Russia. In the second part of the matryoshka – there are China and France. France has so far little influence on anything, although it is trying to gain more weight politically. China did not have such influence before, but now it has. And it sways its influence quite inconspicuously, calmly and with an understanding of its goals.”

At the same time, Vladimir A. Orlov noted that Russia and China are now working on similar patterns of non-proliferation and it is expected that there will be no shift in the near future. At the same time, the differences between Russia and the United States, and China and the United States are deepening. “In this sense, the thesis that Russia and the United States are connected by an unbreakable silk thread in arms control issues, at least, requires critical reassessment. The beginning of this year saw the replacement of a separative approach, in which the general state of bilateral relations did not affect the dialogue on arms control, by a holistic approach, which involves linking arms control issues with other issues of Russian-US relations.”

Also, the director of the PIR Center noted that the “chessboard” for the new “big game” is now floating to the APR. ” There is a lot of talk about the introduction of a moratorium on the placement of INF in Europe. But while asking this question, we may imply giving carte blanche for the placement of the INF in the Asia-Pacific region, for example, to Americans. And it is quite clear that now Russia and China are playing pass here, trying to be safe.”

In addition, during the interview, questions about Russian-American contradictions in the field of non-proliferation, nuances of the Russian-Chinese dialogue, the nuclear programs of the DPRK and Iran were raised.

The project of the PIR Center “A New Nuclear Nine?” is aimed at studying the prospects for the emergence of new nuclear states on the world map. For questions related to the project, please contact Sergey Semenov