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 You are in: Under Secretary for Arms Control and International Security > Bureau of International Security and Nonproliferation (ISN) > Bureau Leadership and Organization

Office of Conventional Arms Threat Reduction (ISN/CATR)

Mission Statement:

ISN/CATR leads the working-level USG efforts to curb the proliferation of advanced conventional weapons (ACW) such as Man-Portable Air Defense Systems (MANPADS), major weapons systems and heavy military equipment (tanks, aircraft, missiles), sensors and lasers, and precision-guided munitions. It leads in ISN on matters related to conventional weapons, related dual-use items and technologies, and with U.S. security policies related to commercial remote sensing. ISN/CATR reports to the Deputy Assistant Secretary for Threat Reduction, Export Controls, and Negotiations. It works closely with the Department of Commerce/Bureau of Industry and Security, the Department of Defense/Defense Technology Security Agency (DTSA), and relevant components of the Intelligence Community, including the Counter-Terrorism Center.

Key Missions:

Conventional Weapons Controls & Transparency: ISN/CATR leads U.S. efforts to develop, coordinate, and implement policy to promote bilateral and multilateral coordination in export control policy for conventional weapons and related dual-use technology. It heads the U.S. Delegations to the 40-nation Wassenaar Arrangement General Working Group, Expert Group, and Licensing and Enforcement Officer Meetings. Officers formulate, coordinate, and implement U.S. policy in Wassenaar on controlling or providing transparency of conventional weapons transfers and proliferation, focusing upon multilateral export control policies and practices for munitions and related dual-use items and technology. ISN/CATR leads the development of U.S. policy on multilateral efforts on conventional weapons transfers, including the UN Register of Conventional Arms and the proposed Arms Trade Treaty (ATT), an international effort to negotiate a legally binding international agreement to regulate the international trade in conventional arms. ISN/CATR also participates in the annual U.S.-EU Troika Consultations on Conventional Arms (COARM). The office coordinates closely with ISN/RA and the PM Bureau on conventional weapons negotiations.

Dual-use export Control Implementation: ISN/CATR leads the development and implementation of Wassenaar-related dual-use export controls (including Dept. of Commerce regulatory changes), reviewing export applications in such sensitive areas as high performance computers, encryption technology, numerically-controlled machine tools, and low light level sensors. Officers represent State on working-level and supports senior-level groups -- such as the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS), Operating Committee (OC), and the Arms Control Export Policy (ACEP) Committee -- charged with such dual-use responsibilities. ISN/CATR also reviews visa applications related to advanced conventional weapons and dual-use goods concerns.

White House MANPADS Initiative: ISN/CATR leads U.S. efforts to promote greater international controls over the export of Man-Portable Air Defense Systems (MANPADS). Officers develop and implement efforts to strengthen other countries' export controls laws and practices on MANPADS -- e.g., bilaterally or through regional and other security groups such as the G-8, Wassenaar, OSCE, APEC, and the OAS. In leading these efforts, the office partners with a number of other ISN offices and other agencies: ISN/ECC in its Export Control and Border Security (EXBS) programs to strengthen MANPADS controls, ISN/WMDT in its efforts to thwart possible terrorist access to or use of MANPADS or thermobaric weapons, PM/WRA in its bilateral stockpile management efforts, and the Department of Defense in its military-to-military cooperation efforts related to MANPADS.

Conventional Arms Interdictions and Sanctions: ISN/CATR leads U.S. government efforts to identify and stop specific shipments of conventional weapons and related sensitive dual-use items of concern worldwide, particularly to regions of conflict and states of concern (e.g., state sponsors of terrorism). The office chairs the interagency Technology Transfer Working Group (TTWG), which monitors all-source intelligence and information and coordinates interdiction actions to disrupt transfers. ISN/CATR prepares reports and recommendations for the Deputy Secretary on decisions related to transfers to State Sponsors of Terrorism of lethal military equipment or that otherwise trigger U.S. legal sanctions, and implements those decisions. ISN/CATR coordinates with the ISN Front Office and with other ISN offices in drafting relevant sections of nonproliferation reports to Congress. The office is responsible in ISN for sanctions and interdiction policy for conventional weapons, working closely with ISN/CPI and the ISN Front Office to ensure that ISN's sanctions policy is effectively integrated with its other counterproliferation efforts.

Commercial Remote Sensing Satellites: Officers coordinate and lead development and implementation of U.S. policy on commercial export of remote sensing technology. ISN/CATR chairs the Remote Sensing Imagery Working Group (RSIWG), negotiates Government-to-Government agreements establishing the basis for commercial sales of remote sensing imagery satellites either built by the U.S. or containing U.S. satellite technology, and reviews export license applications for imagery satellites.



Director: Ann Ganzer


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