WMD Disarmament & Security in the Middle East

The course will provide students with a thorough understanding of weapons of mass destruction proliferation across the Middle East and North Africa Region and efforts to strengthen international non-proliferation regimes. The course will be taught through a gender lens and with perspectives from the Middle East.

Banning nuclear weapons in the Middle East has been linked to broader regional security issues and the eventual banning of all weapons of mass destruction. A Weapons of Mass Destruction Free Zone (WMDFZ) was first proposed by Egypt in 1990 with backing from Iran. The proposal for a WMD-free zone in the Middle East, however, faces daunting challenges in the most troubled region of the world.

Through class discussion and guest speakers from academia and practitioners in WMD non-proliferation, this course will provide students with the ability to analyse these challenges, revisit past efforts to achieve the zone and identify future scenarios to rid the region of all WMD.


Sign up for our Spring 2021 course.


  • Gain an understanding of WMD proliferation globally and in the region.
  • Examine the security and disarmament sector through a gender lens and the importance of diverse voices to actively engage and shape this discourse.
  • Examine the history of WMD proliferation across the region.
  • Explore the role foreign states play in the development of WMD programs in the region.
  • Learn about the link and impact of nuclear war on the environment.
  • Examine the risk of WMD acquisition and possible use in the future.
  • Analyze current and future efforts to establish a zone free from WMD in the Middle East