The METO Student Journal of WMD Disarmament and Security in the Middle East is a compilation of the best papers submitted by students following METO’s 9-session summer course which took place in July and August 2021. The course provided students with a thorough understanding of weapons of mass destruction (WMD) proliferation across the Middle East and North Africa region and efforts to strengthen international non-proliferation regimes. Through class discussion and guest speakers from academia and practitioners in WMD non-proliferation, the course provided students with the ability to analyse challenges, revisit past efforts to achieve the zone and identify future scenarios to rid the region of all WMDs.
Our summer course had a broad geographic coverage with students coming from 23 different countries. It’s worth noting that 45% of our students came from the region: Egypt, Lebanon, Syria, Yemen, Saudi Arabia, Turkey, and Iran. It is also worth noting that our course achieved gender-balanced representation with 51% of women participants and 49% of men.
The success of our summer course could not have been achieved without the dedication of our distinguished guest lecturers, who are all leading figures in the world of WMD disarmament. We are grateful, humbled and thankful to the following for their contribution:
- Prof Zia Mian, Princeton University’s Program on Science and Global Security
- Dr Tarja Cronberg, Distinguished Associate Fellow at the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute
- Ambassador Seyed Hossein Mousavian, one of the chief negotiators from 2003-2005 on Iran’s nuclear programme with the European powers, currently a research associate at the Program on Science and Global Security of Princeton University.
- Dr Carlos Umaña, Co-president of the International Physicians for the Prevention of Nuclear Weapons.
- Dr Chen Kane, Project Lead for the Middle East WMDFZ Project at the United Nations Institute for Disarmament Research (UNIDIR),
- Dr Renata Dalaqua, Project Lead for Gender and Disarmament at UNIDIR
We would like to also extend a special thanks to METO’s program associate Ekaterina Kibalchich for all her assistance in making sure the course proceeded smoothly and to Gabrielle Dyson for her thorough editing of the papers. Finally, many thanks to the wonderful students who participated and engaged enthusiastically in class and produced thoughtful papers and presentations on the need to advance the establishment of the zone. Also we need to mention that the views expressed in these papers do not necessarily reflect METO’s position and remain the sole perspective of the students.