Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT)

2018/11/20

Establishment

The Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT) opened for signature on 1 July 1968 and entered into force on 5 March 1970.
Japan signed it in February 1970 and ratified it in June 1976. In May 1995, it was decided to extend the Treaty indefinitely.

States Parties

A total of 191 States have joined the Treaty (as of Feb 2015). India, Israel, Pakistan and South Sudan remain outside the Treaty.

Purpose

1) Nuclear Non-Proliferation: to prevent the spread of nuclear weapons to anyone, except the "nuclear-weapon States."
Under the NPT “nuclear-weapon States” is a term that refers to the countries that detonated a nuclear device before 1 January 1967, namely China, France, the Russian Federation, the United Kingdom, and the United States.
2) Nuclear Disarmament: to promote nuclear disarmament negotiations.
3) Peaceful Uses of Nuclear Energy: to promote cooperation for the purpose of the peaceful uses of nuclear energy.

Content

The Treaty stipulates that,
(1) while affirming the “inalienable right” of states parties to use nuclear energy for peaceful purposes,
(2) each nuclear-weapon and non-nuclear-weapon State has an obligation not to proliferate nuclear weapons,
(3) the nuclear-weapon States are obligated to pursue negotiations in good faith on effective measures relating to nuclear disarmament, and
(4) each non-nuclear-weapon State undertakes to accept the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) safeguards for the purpose of verifying the peaceful use of nuclear energy.
These rights and obligations form the NPT regime. To assure that the purposes and the provisions of the Treaty are being realized, Article VIII paragraph 3 of the NPT stipulates that a conference of states parties will be held every five years to review the operation of the Treaty.

Key provisions: The NPT contains a preamble and 11 Articles.
Article I: nuclear non-proliferation obligation of the nuclear-weapon States;
Article II: nuclear non-proliferation obligation of the non-nuclear-weapon States;
Article III: obligation of non-nuclear-weapon States to accept IAEA safeguards;
Article IV: rights of states parties to the peaceful uses of nuclear energy;
Article VI: obligation of nuclear-weapon States to pursue negotiations in good faith on effective measures relating to nuclear disarmament;
Article VIII.3: hold a conference every five years to review the operation of the Treaty;
Article IX.3: definition of a “nuclear-weapon State”.