Office of Multilateral and Nuclear Affairs (AVC/MNA)

The Arms Control, Verification and Compliance (AVC) Bureau’s Office of Multilateral and Nuclear Affairs (AVC/MNA), leads efforts to promote the vision of a safe, secure world without nuclear weapons through the development, negotiation, and implementation of policies relating to multilateral nuclear arms control and disarmament agreements and commitments. The Office interacts with experts from relevant U.S. Government agencies, including the Intelligence Community, the Department of Energy, the Department of Defense, and the National Security Council.

Core Missions

Policy Guidance and Support to U.S. Delegations: This Office provides direct policy guidance and support to the U.S. delegations to multilateral organizations established to negotiate such agreements, including:

(1) The Conference on Disarmament (CD) in Geneva

(2) The First Committee (Disarmament and International Security) of the UN General Assembly (UNFC) in New York

(3) The Preparatory Commission for the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty Organization (CTBTO PrepCom) in Vienna

(4) The United Nations Disarmament Commission (UNDC)

MNA also leads bilateral and multilateral consultations on matters within the purview of these bodies, including with the European Union’s Committee on Disarmament in the UN (CODUN), and other regional organizations.

Implementation: MNA leads U.S. engagement in multilateral implementation of nuclear arms control and disarmament-associated agreements and arrangements.

Engagement: The Office manages U.S. engagement in relevant international discussions and negotiations related to multilateral arms control and disarmament agreements. MNA represents the Bureau and Department on delegations to various multilateral fora and negotiations, and liaises with foreign officials in Washington, New York, and overseas to advance U.S. objectives for multilateral nuclear issues.

Promoting Innovation in Verification: MNA assesses the adequacy of monitoring and verification resources in prospective and existing nuclear arms control and disarmament agreements and commitments, as well as promotes the identification, development, and implementation of verification technologies. One example is:

The International Partnership for Nuclear Disarmament Verification (IPNDV): IPNDV is an initiative to develop the tools and technologies to address the complex challenges involved in the verification of nuclear disarmament. MNA manages U.S. engagement and leadership in IPNDV, working closely with the Nuclear Threat Initiative and representatives from over 25 countries participating in the Partnership.

Compliance: MNA leads U.S. assessments of compliance with specific global and multilateral nuclear-related arms control and disarmament agreements, as well as the development of diplomatic approaches and negotiations to resolve U.S. compliance concerns. The Office also promotes measures to enforce compliance, encourage transparency and confidence-building, and implement consequences for violations of international agreements.

Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty (CTBT): MNA leads Department of State efforts to obtain U.S. ratification of the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty and its subsequent entry into force and oversees the build-out of the Treaty’s verification regime.

Fissile Material Cutoff Treaty (FMCT): The Office leads the development of U.S. policy on a Fissile Material Cutoff Treaty, and on a moratorium on fissile material production for use in nuclear weapons, as well as negotiation of an agreement in this area.

Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT): The Office leads on the nuclear-disarmament aspects of the implementation of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty, supporting the International Security and Non-Proliferation Bureau which leads for the Department on the NPT. In this context, the Office is engaged in supporting U.S. Delegations to NPT Review Conferences and their Preparatory Committee meetings. In particular, this Office supports engagement among the five NPT nuclear weapon States in support of NPT obligations and implementation, referred to as the P5 Process.