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Multilateral nuclear talks Geneva's long-running diplomatic ballet

Photographer Mark Henley takes a behind-the-scenes look at the Geneva-based Conference on Disarmament, which has been deadlocked for two decades.

Represented by the Panos agency, Henley external linkhas been documenting the meetings of the Conference on Disarmament in the United Nations Palais des Nations complex in Geneva since 2012.

The imposing Council Chamber where the conference meetings take place was once home to the Council of the League of Nations, the predecessor of the United Nations Security Council. It was here that negotiations took place to end the 1991 Gulf War. And it is here that member states have gathered since 1979 for the Conference on Disarmament (CD).external link 

But the CD has been blocked ever since the Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty was adopted in 1996. Disagreements between states on which disarmament topics should be negotiated and linkages between issues have left the forum unable to agree on a way forward. However, in recent months member states have been talking about a “new sense of urgency” to accelerate the pace of multilateral disarmament and non-proliferation, and a possible procedural breakthrough. 

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