Presentation to Drew University Alumni Association 2006 Reunion – 3 June 2006

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Curtis J.  Raynold

Political Affairs Officer

Department for Disarmament Affairs

United Nations

                       Managing Weapons of Mass Destruction in the

Contemporary World 

The 9/11 debacle forced the international community to examine more closely crucial developments in the geo-political environment at that time and to face the fact that weapons of mass destruction were acquiring a renewed and dangerous attraction, not only for certain nation states, but also for terrorists and other non-state actors. The latter development called for a new and comprehensive approach to addressing this threat in the contexts of disarmament and non-proliferation, as well as the prevention of terrorism. In April 2004, the international community took the initiative in addressing the growing concern that terrorist could acquire weapons of mass destruction through the adoption of Security Council Resolution 1540 (2004).

Whether or not these threats actually materialize, the international community must acknowledge that the possibility of a nuclear or radiological weapon being detonated in a major city or of sarin and other lethal toxic agents being released into public transportation systems or covertly dispersed in population centers is more acute today than it was ten years ago. Existing multilateral agreements and domestic efforts, while achieving success in some areas, have not been able to effectively and comprehensively address the evolving threat or dispel growing concern about the potential acquisition and use of such weapons of mass destruction.  Security Council Resolution 1540 attempts to address some of these concerns.  The following panel member will give a brief insight into this new approach to the proliferation of WMD and the concomitant threat of terrorism.

Political Affairs Officer, Curtis Raynold, was assigned to the United Nations Department for Disarmament Affairs in July 2004.  He joined the U.N. in June 1985, through the U.N. administered National Competitive Examination in Economics. Mr. Raynold served with the U.N. Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) from 1985 to 2004 and in that capacity, traveled extensively in Africa, Asia and Eastern Europe on fact-finding and advisory missions aimed at facilitating U.N. member States’ implementation of the international drug control treaties. In 1999, he was posted to United Nations Interim Administration Mission in Kosovo (UNMIK) immediately following the negotiated cease-fire between NATO and Yugoslavia and the subsequent adoption by the U.N. Security Council of Resolution 1244 in June of that year.

During his two and a half-year stint in Kosovo as International Municipal Administrator of the Municipality of Novo Brdo in north-eastern Kosovo, Mr. Raynold played an instrumental role in the implementation of Security Council Resolution 1244 (1999) which mandated the U.N. Secretary-General to establish an interim civilian administration in the war-ravaged province. He distinguished himself there by establishing, in Novo Brdo, the first multi-ethnic municipal assembly in Kosovo thus facilitating the U.N.’s mandate to ensure progressively substantial autonomy for the province. Mr. Raynold had earlier served on U.N. peace-keeping and electoral assistance missions in the Central African Republic, Liberia, Namibia and South Africa.

Prior to the U.N., Mr. Raynold worked with the St. Lucia Ministry of Finance from 1978 to 1980 and the Diplomatic Service from 1980 to 1985 which included assignments on St. Lucia’s delegation to the 37th and 38th Sessions of the U.N. General Assembly in 1982 and 1983.

Mr. Raynold graduated with a B.A. in Economics and Law from the University of the West Indies (UWI) in 1978.  Under a scholarship from the German Foundation for International Development, he pursued graduate studies in International Relations at the Institute of International Relations of UWI in Trinidad & Tobago. There, Mr. Raynold conducted graduate research for his thesis entitled “Caribbean Disintegration: The Caribbean Regional Movement from 1965 to 1980”.  He earned a Master’s degree in Government  at Harvard University, specializing in International Political Economy.

 

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