North Atlantic Council Statement on the 50th Anniversary of the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons
Fifty years ago today, the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT) entered into force. We, as NATO Allies, celebrate this visionary Treaty and its remarkable achievements. The NPT remains the essential bulwark against the spread of nuclear weapons, the cornerstone of the global non-proliferation and disarmament architecture, and the framework for international cooperation in sharing the benefits of the peaceful uses of nuclear energy, science, and technology. Allies remain strongly committed to full implementation of the NPT in all its aspects.
The NPT has limited the spread of nuclear weapons across the world. Since the Treaty entered into force, great progress has been made on nuclear disarmament, evidenced by the elimination of tens of thousands of nuclear weapons, and further work to implement all provisions of the Treaty remains necessary. Ongoing proliferation challenges underline the need for upholding and strengthening the Treaty, and we call on all States to enhance efforts to achieve universal adherence and universalisation, and effectively combat nuclear proliferation through full implementation of the NPT. There is no credible alternative to this Treaty.
Arms control, disarmament, and non-proliferation have made, and should continue to make, an essential contribution to achieving NATO’s security objectives and for ensuring strategic stability and our collective security. NATO Allies have a long track record of doing their part on disarmament and non-proliferation. We reaffirm our resolve to seek a safer world for all, and to take further practical steps and effective measures to foster nuclear disarmament. As long as nuclear weapons exist, NATO will remain a nuclear alliance. The fundamental purpose of NATO’s nuclear capability has always been to preserve peace, prevent coercion, and deter aggression. Allies have always adhered to their obligations under the NPT and continue to do so. NATO’s nuclear arrangements have always been fully consistent with the NPT.
NATO Allies support the ultimate goal of a world without nuclear weapons in full accordance with all provisions of the NPT, including Article VI, in an ever more effective and verifiable way that promotes international stability, and is based on the principle of undiminished security for all. Despite its achievements, the enduring success of the NPT cannot be taken for granted and requires sustained effort. In this spirit, we call on all NPT States Parties to work together towards a successful Review Conference later this year.