July 10, 2023 – The ninth edition of the Summer School on Nuclear Disarmament and Non-Proliferation for diplomats from Latin America and the Caribbean is taking place from today until July 15 in Mexico City.
The Summer School is the educational initiative resulting from the close collaboration between the Agency for the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons in Latin America and the Caribbean (OPANAL), the Mexican Secretariat of Foreign Affairs (SRE), the Matías Romero Institute (IMR), and the James Martin Center for Nonproliferation Studies (CNS) at the Middlebury Institute of International Studies at Monterey. Its objective is to train diplomats from Latin America and the Caribbean in matters related to nuclear disarmament and non-proliferation.
This year’s Summer School was inaugurated by Counselor María Antonieta Jáquez Huacuja, Deputy Director General for Disarmament, Non-Proliferation, and Arms Control at the SRE; Mr. Jean du Preez, Senior Manager of Education and Training Programs at CNS; Dr. Eduardo Jaramillo Navarrete, Director General for the United Nations at the SRE; Ambassador Flávio Roberto Bonzanini, Secretary General of OPANAL; Ms. Elena Sokova, Executive Director of the Vienna Center for Disarmament and Nonproliferation (VCDNP); Amb. Alejandro Alday González, Director General of the Matías Romero Institute.
During the first day, the following interventions by the heads of international organizations were delivered: Ambassador Rafael Grossi, Director General of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA); Dr. Robert Floyd, Executive Secretary of the Preparatory Commission for the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty Organization (CTBTO); and Ms. Izumi Nakamitzu, High Representative of the United Nations Office for Disarmament Affairs (UNODA).
Additionally, Ambassador Alexander Kmentt, Director of Disarmament, Arms Control, and Non-Proliferation at the Austrian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, addressed the participants with a keynote lecture on the humanitarian impact of nuclear weapons.
The ninth edition of the Summer School will last for six days, concluding on Saturday, July 15, 2023. It will cover topics such as peaceful uses of nuclear energy, nuclear non-proliferation, nuclear weapons technology, regional and international security, control of nuclear materials, international safeguards, nuclear disarmament, nuclear-weapon-free zones, humanitarian impact of nuclear weapons, arms control, gender, prevention of nuclear terrorism, among others.
This year’s Summer School has a record number of represented countries from the region, with 31 diplomats from 27 countries, and a high participation of women (68%).
Furthermore, participants will have the opportunity to learn from distinguished experts from the National Institute of Nuclear Research (ININ), VCDNP, the National Commission for Nuclear Security and Safeguards (CNSNS), and the Brazilian-Argentine Agency for Accounting and Control of Nuclear Materials (ABACC), among others.