All ongoing armed conflicts, including in Europe, are fought by means of fairly tradition conventional weaponry. After the end of the Cold War, former adversaries sat together and discussed ways to prevent new conflicts from erupting again. Two pillars of the emerging architecture to control the use of conventional weapons were formed by the Conventional Armed Forces in Europe (CFE) Treaty and the Vienna Document, a collection of Confidence and Security Building Measures (CSBMs) agreed between the participating states of the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE)
Dossier: ‘Are Arms controlling us, or can we take back control?‘
The international arms control architecture is eroding. After the United States’ withdrawal from the joint comprehensive Plan of Action with Iran in 2018 and the abrogation of the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty (INF) in 2019, this year saw another major blow against a key agreement, the Open Skies Treaty (OST). Secretary of State Mike Pompeo announced on May 21st that the Trump administration decided to leave the treaty with a notice period of six months.