28 July, 2021

Clear Agenda

Has Joan Rohlfing been appointed to persuade India to sign the CTBT?

Clear Agenda

IT'S payback time. And Washington is set to submit its IoU for the support it showed India during Kargil. As a first step it announced that Joan Rohlfing—senior advisor for national security to US energy secretary Bill Richardson—will be on a six-month detail at the US embassy in New Delhi, beginning September 1. Her brief: to support ambassador Richard Celeste on non-proliferation issues, a field she has worked in for the last 12 years. For the moment the US seems to have decided that mediation is a dirty word. Right now its priority is non-proliferation issues, especially in getting India to sign the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty (CTBT).

This is an interesting development considering that Rohlfing will arrive in Delhi in the midst of elections and a month before the CTBT conference begins in Vienna. The conference will look at ways to persuade recalcitrant nations to sign and ratify the CTBT. It'll essentially be considering how to bring it into force. Only those who have signed the treaty so far can attend the conference. Since India hasn't, it...

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