Addressing the NPT’s Midlife Crisis

A view of the UN General Assembly Hall as Taous Feroukhi of Algeria (on screen), president of the 2015 nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty review conference, closed the session May 22, 2015. The month-long conference concluded without a consensus on a final document that would have established specific steps to speed nuclear disarmament, advance nonproliferation efforts, and work toward a nuclear-weapon-free zone in the Middle East. [Photo credit: Eskinder Debebe/UN]
  • an immediate decision by the United States and Russia to extend New START by five years and commence negotiations on a follow-on agreement to achieve lower, verifiable limits on all types of nuclear warheads and delivery systems;
  • a high-level political commitment by all nuclear-armed states, including China, France, and the United Kingdom, not to increase the overall size or diversity of their nuclear arsenals;
  • an annual report by each of the nuclear-armed states on the size and composition of their deployed and nondeployed nuclear forces, as well as their fissile material stockpiles of separated plutonium and highly enriched uranium; and
  • a reiteration by all nuclear-armed states that they will maintain their de facto nuclear weapons test moratoria and take all necessary steps to facilitate the prompt entry into force of the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty.
  • the negotiation of legally binding negative security assurances to non-nuclear-weapon states;
  • an end to Cold War-era “launch under attack” postures, which increase the risk of accidental nuclear war; and
  • a joint statement recognizing that a nuclear war cannot be won and must never be fought and would produce catastrophic health and environmental effects.

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The Arms Control Association, founded in 1971, is dedicated to promoting public understanding of and support for effective arms control policies.