SWF Holds Workshop on Self-Defense in Space

Monday, September 14, 2015

On September 9, 2015, Secure World Foundation (SWF) and the George Washington University’s Space Policy Institute (SPI) held a small, closed-door workshop in Washington, DC, to explore how the principle of the right to self-defense may apply in the outer space domain. The event brought together experts from government, academia, and non-governmental organizations to discuss the role of international law, policy, and military operations in decision-making on crises, uses of force, and conflict involving space capabilities.

The workshop used a series of simple scenarios to help focus the discussion.  The workshop scenarios were all based on potential real-world scenarios, but were not intended to be realistic portrayals of actual events. A copy of the scenarios can be found here. A summary report will be published by SWF in the near future.

The event was the third in a series of SWF events focused on this issue. The first event was a panel discussion on the interaction between international law and military activities in space, held in Washington, DC, on March 21, 2015, which examined how other domains have dealt with International Humanitarian Law (IHL) and the Law of Armed Conflict (LOAC). The second event was a small, invite-only workshop co-organized with the United Nations Institute for Disarmament Research (UNIDIR) in Geneva, Switzerland, on March 31, 2015, which brought together representatives from more than a dozen countries to share perspectives on self-defense in space. 

For more information, please contact SWF Technical Advisor Mr. Brian Weeden or Washington DC Office Director Ms. Victoria Samson.

Last updated on September 14, 2015