THE NEW NORTH KOREAN ICBM: A SIGNIFICANT IMPROVEMENT THAT MAY BE READY AS EARLY AS 2018

Specialist site, 38 North, on 30th November said that photographs and video released by North Korea reveal that the Hwasong-15 test fired on November 29th is not a modified version of the Hwasong-14, as it initially thought.  Worryingly, the article suggests that initial calculations indicate the new missile “could deliver a moderately-sized nuclear weapon to any city on the US mainland”, and that it is large and powerful enough to carry simple decoys or other countermeasures designed to challenge the existing national missile defence (NMD) system of the US.

http://www.38north.org/2017/11/melleman113017/

NEW SIPRI STUDY ON AUTONOMY IN WEAPON SYSTEMS: STATE OF PLAY AND OPTIONS FOR MOVING FORWARD

The study from the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute aims to shed light on the current developments in autonomy in weapon systems and thereby provide important insights for informed international discussions, and should they be regulated within the framework of the 1980 UN Convention on Certain Conventional Weapons (CCW).  “Autonomy” has many definitions and interpretations, and the study says it is already a reality of weapon systems development.  A key area examined by the study is the technology that enables weapon systems to acquire targets autonomously.  The report aims to help diplomats and members of civil society interested in the issue of lethal autonomous weapons to improve their understanding of the technological foundations of autonomy, and obtain a sense of the speed and trajectory of progress of autonomy in weapon systems. It also provides concrete examples that could be used to start delineating the points at which the advance of autonomy in weapons may raise technical, legal, operational and ethical concerns.

https://www.sipri.org/media/2017/new-sipri-study-autonomy-weapon-systems-state-play-and-options-moving-forward

Notice to exporters 2017/28: updates to 9 open licences delayed

The UK Export Control Joint Unit reports that planned updates to 9 open general export licences (OGEL) announced in notice to exporters 2017/27, which were due to come into force on 29th November 2017, have been delayed.

The planned updates reflect changes to the EU dual-use export control list in Annex I to regulation (EC) No 428/2009, which we expected to be published around 26th November 2017.

The ECJU anticipates that this change to the EU dual-use export control list will happen in the next few days. When it does, the changes to the OGEL will be made and a further notice to exporters will be issued.

OXFAM ALTERNATIVE TAX HAVEN LIST

EU Observer reported on 28th November that Oxfam believes that Ireland, Luxembourg, Malta, and the Netherlands should be on the EU’s upcoming tax haven blacklist, but the 4 Member States will be excluded because the list will only cover non-EU jurisdictions.  Oxfam has published its own alternative list, and an interactive map detailing why those listed should be included.  Despite the recent Paradise papers, the Isle of Man is not on the map.

https://www.oxfam.org/en/research/blacklist-or-whitewash-what-real-eu-blacklist-tax-havens-should-look

https://public.tableau.com/profile/oxfam.eu.office#!/vizhome/ShadowEUtaxhavenblacklist_0/ShadowEUtaxhavenblacklist-map