Czernin Security Forum: Taking a Global Look at Security and Arms Control

We have organized the annual Czernin Security Forum - a unique event which was held in the Czernin Palace in Prague on 20-21 November 2019.


Datum: 20.11. - 21.11.
Čas: 08:00
Místo: Czernin Palace, Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Czech Republic, Loretánské nám. 5, Prague 1
Spolupráce: Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Czech Republic, NATO's Public Diplomacy, Friedrich Eber Stiftung
Organizuje: Matúš Halás

The objective of the event was to bring together some fo the top-level security experts and let them analyse and discuss the ongoing shifts in the field of security matters. This year the event focused on the topic of arms control. Our speakers seeked to analyse the existing regime as well as possible consequences of its gradual disappearance.

The draft programme is outlined below.

Preliminary program of the Conference "Taking a Global Look at Security and Arms Control"

You can download the preliminary program HERE.


8:30 - 9:00 Registration

9:00 - 10:00 Keynote Speech

The Mirror Hall

Ronald J. Bartek (Principal Negotiator of the INF Treaty Elimination Protocol, US)

Opening Remarks: 

  • Martin Povejšil (Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs, CZ)
  • Anne Seyfferth (Head of the Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung office in Prague)

10:00 - 12:00 The European dilemma: Between an unravelling past and an uncertain future

The Mirror Hall

The existing arms control regime—the heritage of the Cold War—is gradually falling apart. How should we respond to that? Moreover, is arms control a moral goal, or just a way states try to improve their own security?

12:00 - 13:00 Luncheon

13:00 - 15:00 Theory meets reality: Dynamics of power politics and mutual (in-)security

The Mirror Hall

What conditions make arms control possible? And what roles do deterrence, the mutual balance of threat and perceived insecurity play in that? To answer all those questions, the panel looked at arms control in light of changing security dynamics.

  • Moderator: Matúš Halás (Head of the Centre for European Security at the IIR, CZ)
  • Tariq Rauf (Former Head of Verification and Security Policy, IAEA, AT)
  • Kristin Ven Bruusgaard (University of Oslo, NO)
  • Hans-Peter Hinrichsen (Deputy Head of Mission, Embassy of the Federal Republic of Germany to the Czech Republic)

15:00 - 15:30 Coffee Break

15:30 - 17:30 Response to failure: New arms race or new arms control?

The Mirror Hall

Is an arms race a natural result of a collapse of arms control? And if there is an alternative, then how it can look like at the global level? Our panellists also shared their views on viability, desirability and feasibility of new arms control initiatives.

  • Moderator: Jakub Eberle (Institute of International Relations, CZ)
  • Michal Onderčo (Erasmus University Rotterdam)
  • Jiří Šedivý (Special Representative for Resilience and New Threats, MFA, CZ)
  • Amy J. Nelson (Research Fellow, National Defense University, US)

17:30 Social Event


9:30 - 10:00 Registration

10:00 - 12:00 Expert workshop: A new international framework for arms control?

The Mirror Hall

A discussion paper was prepared for this workshop under the lead of the Institute of International Relations. It offered an opportunity to openly debate some sensitive issues related to a possible global arm control regulatory framework.

  • Moderator: Ondřej Ditrych (Director of the Institute of International Relations, CZ)
  • Matúš Halás (Head of the Centre for European Security at the IIR, CZ)
  • Kristin Ven Bruusgaard (University of Oslo, NO)
  • Michal Onderčo (Erasmus University Rotterdam, NL)

12:00 - 13:00 Luncheon

13:00 - 15:30 Taking regional security seriously

The Mirror Hall

Profound geopolitical changes affect contemporary global security to a great extent. Since the only common ground is often the national self-interest, what might then motivate relevant actors to join a possible arms control regime?

  • Chair: Ronald J. Bartek (Principal US Negotiator of the INF Treaty Elimination Protocol)
  • Ministerial Address: Tomáš Petříček (Minister of Foreign Affairs, CZ)
  • William Alberque (Arms Control, Disarmament & Non-Proliferation Centre, NATO HQ)
  • Rebecca Hersman (Director of the Project on Nuclear Issues, CSIS, US)
  • Wolfgang Richter (German Institute for International and Security Affairs, DE)
  • Closing remarks: Ondřej Ditrych (Director of the Institute of International Relations, CZ)

15:30 - 17:00 Glass of wine

The conference Czernin Security Forum was supported by Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Czech Republic, NATO's Public Diplomacy and Friedrich Eber Stiftung.