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ISTC Welcomes the UN Resolution on Youth, Disarmament and Non-proliferation, Works for Its Implementation

On 12 December 2019, the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) adopted Resolution 74/64 on Youth, disarmament and non-proliferation. It recognizes that young people in all countries are key agents for social change, economic development and technological innovation, and reaffirms the important and positive contribution that young people can make to the promotion and attainment of sustainable peace and security, and the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals.

Guided by the specific decisions by the ISTC Governing Board on prioritizing the work with the younger generation of scientists, the Organization has been working on youth inclusion and empowerment in the course of its transformation. ISTC’s policies and many of its initiatives are in line with the recommendations of the UNGA Resolution 74/64, in particular: “…to promote the meaningful and inclusive participation of young people in discussions in the field of disarmament and non-proliferation, including through dialogue platforms, mentoring, internships, fellowships, scholarships, model events and youth group activities…”

The Resolution is especially important for the ISTC’s Targeted Initiative (TI) on CBRN Export Control on Dual-Use Materials and Intangible Technologies, which has specific components targeting the younger generation and looking forward to having in the future more people with knowledge about CBRN, non-proliferation and export control ready to work for a peaceful word. The Targeted Initiative focuses on mitigating the risks of misuse of the investigations and know-how related to CBRN weapons programs; on raising awareness among both the academic and industrial community of these risks, as well as on facilitating the collaboration between state and non-state actors on Export Control systems in the participating countries from Central Asia and adjacent regions. To accomplish these objectives, the TI has developed a master course in export control with modular design, adaptable to the requirements of all partner countries. Each year, ISTC provides a grant for a PhD research to be performed both in the partner country and in one EU country on export control and non-proliferation related issues. So far ISTC has supported two young scientists from Kazakhstan. In addition, an annual conference is organized for scientists – most of whom are young experts - from all partner counties to discuss the social impact of their research on dual-use materials and technologies and its possible misuse.

Examples of ISTC activities targeting the youth are numerous. For instance, the Memorandum for Cooperation between ISTC and the Nuclear Society of Kazakhstan (NSK) envisages that the two organizations pay special attention to educate, engage and empower youth in the fields of non-proliferation and peaceful application of nuclear. In consonance with this goal, ISTC facilitated the establishment of formal contacts between the NSK Youth section and the International Youth Nuclear Congress (IYNC), a global network of young students and professionals in the nuclear industry.

As part of the ISTC-implemented, EU-funded project Support to Southern African States in Nuclear Safety and Safeguards, ISTC engaged with more than 400 African high school and university students, young researchers and industry professionals in nuclear advocacy initiatives, such as: the launch in Nairobi of the African Young Generation in Nuclear (AYGN) (March 2017); an international workshop on nuclear advocacy and communication, convened by AYGN in Nairobi (November 2017); a regional conference on enhancing Africa’s capacity in nuclear safety, security and safeguards and launch of AYGN Zambia Chapter in Lusaka (August 2018); the Second African Youth Nuclear Summit in Pretoria (October 2019).

ISTC welcomes the UN GA resolution on Youth, Disarmament and Non-proliferation and acknowledges “the importance of realizing the full potential of young people through education and capacity-building” and “the need to promote the sustainable entry of young people into the field of disarmament and non-proliferation”.

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  • The partner counties to the ISTC’s Targeted Initiative (TI) are Afghanistan, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Moldova, Mongolia, Pakistan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Ukraine, and Uzbekistan.
  • The text of the UNGA Resolution 74/64 at: https://undocs.org/pdf?symbol=en/A/RES/74/64

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