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The article deals with the exploration, development and use of outer space. Special attention is paid to the military potential of outer space and the threat of its weaponization. The corresponding legal regulation instruments are especially noted. Special emphasis is placed on measures aimed at maintaining strategic stability and preventing the arms race in outer space.

The paper has been produced for the joint PIR Center – CSIS project "Reducing nuclear risks during Great Powers Competition". We thank our partners in CSIS for their cooperation and support for this publication.


«The Dual Degree Master`s Program creates a positive impression and its implementation is undoubtedly worth continuing. Classes, especially on specific topics, sparked great interest among students, they actively asked questions, thus lectures turned into interactive communication from time to time. The set of topics composing separate courses harmoniously fit into the general outline of the Master`s Program», – Modern Arms Control and Disarmament course instructor, member of the Advisory Board of PIR Center Andrey Malov.


Students of the fourth cohort of the dual degree master program WMD Nonproliferation, Nuclear Policy and Global Security, which is run jointly by The Middlebury Institute of International Studies at Monterey (MIIS), Moscow State Institute of International Relations (MGIMO), and PIR Center, started their studies at MGIMO University in September.


“Vienna document is a good example of a politically binding agreement having a verification mechanism. This system works, however, as long as it is a multilateral arrangement reached within the framework of OSCE. Bilateral political documents concerning arms control function quite ineffectively”, – PIR Center Board Chairman Evgeny Buzhinskiy. 


“Autonomous weapons turn the military men into romantics: they are looking forward to another revolution in military affairs. It means new arms race, temptation to dominate globally, dismantlement of the theory of containment, and international instability for international relations.” – says Vadim Kozyulin, Director of the PIR-Center Project on New Technologies and International Security.


“The Russian-US meeting was devoted to an expert discussion of practical issues concerning the preparations for the forthcoming 2020 NPT Review Conference. It was an important and interesting discussion, not too inspiring but not discouraging either”. – Ambassador Yury Nazarkin, participant of the Russian-American working group.


“From our point of view, the key obligations under the treaty on the prevention of the placement of weapons in outer space should principally be as follows: no deployment of any kind of weapons in outer space; no use or threat of use of force against space objects of the member states… These provisions that constitute the scope of the treaty, as envisioned by those who drafted the treaty, should make development and test of such weapons at least unreasonable” – Andrey Malov, Senior Counsellor, Permanent Mission of the Russian Federation to the Office of the UN and other International Organizations in Geneva.