Cyber-attack on nuclear assets a new threat

Published: July 19, 2019
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Rep image. PHOTO: AFP

Rep image. PHOTO: AFP

Cyber threat to nuclear weapon deterrent is an emerging challenge, said International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) ex-director Dr Tariq Rauf.

“United States and Israel have opened a new Pandora’s Box by launching a cyber-attack against Iran,” Dr Rauf said at a roundtable titled Current Challenges to Arms Control.

Centre for International Strategic Studies (CISS) had organised the roundtable on Thursday, which was attended by senior former officials, experts and scholars.

CISS Executive Director Ambassador Ali Sarwar Naqvi gave the historical background on global arms control initiatives.

Dr Rauf spoke about arms control challenges and the emerging shape of the geostrategic competition.

He discussed in detail a range of very difficult and novel challenges in controlling the nuclear arms advancement of the states.

Risk of nuclear war now highest since WW2, UN arms research chief says

While talking about new arms control measures, he suggested that there is a need of improving the security environment for successful arms control negotiations.

He said the exclusion of Israeli nuclear arsenals in the discussion on the Middle East evokes skepticism about the intentions and efforts of major powers to reduce the threat of nuclear weapons.

In this context, he said that the unilateral withdrawal of the US under Trump administration from JCPOA would further undermine efforts aimed at arms control and disarmament.

Speaking on the issues, he also discussed the cyber threats to nuclear weapon deterrent.

He said the United States and Israel have opened a new Pandora’s box by launching a cyber-attack against Iran.

He drew attention towards the difficult state of security in the world.

He said arms control and disarmament measures would only become possible when security conditions and environment are conducive and states do not face security threats, but on the other hand efforts should continue even when the security situation is not conducive.

Published in The Express Tribune, July 19th, 2019.

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