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Introduction

From: Arms Control and Disarmament Law

Stuart Casey-Maslen

From: Oxford Public International Law (http://opil.ouplaw.com). (c) Oxford University Press, 2022. All Rights Reserved.date: 26 November 2022

Subject(s):
Arms control — Weapons of mass destruction — Disarmament — International peace and security

This chapter provides background and context to the study of arms control and disarmament and first offers definitions of certain fundamental terms, such as arms and weapons, weapons of mass destruction, conventional weapons, disarmament, arms control, and non-proliferation. It summarizes the evolution of arms control and disarmament over the past 150 years into the modern era. It also discusses the role of multilateral institutions in disarmament and arms control. The chapter gives a concise and objective appraisal of arms control and disarmament, with a primary focus on international law, but also with reference to key mechanisms and institutions. It confirms why arms control and disarmament are key contributors to international peace and security.

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