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Treaty on the non-proliferation of nuclear weapons

Opening meeting of the 2010 Review Conference of the Parties to the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT), held in New York, USA
Opening meeting of the 2010 Review Conference of the Parties to the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT), held in New York, USA. Photo: Eskinder Debebe / United Nations

The Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT) was created in 1970 to prevent the spread of nuclear weapons, promote peaceful uses of nuclear energy and to move towards nuclear disarmament. The NPT is the world’s most successful multilateral disarmament agreement, with 190 states parties, and is the only treaty that involves a binding commitment to disarmament by the five nuclear weapon states.

A conference to review the treaty is held every 5 years and, in 2015, the ninth Review Conference of the Parties to the NPT took place at the UN in New York between 27 April and 22 May. The conference examined a wide range of issues, in particular the implementation of the of the Treaty’s provisions since 2010. It was widely considered a disappointment since it failed to produce an agreed final document for taking the NTP further. Read more details in SIPRI's daily reports from the conference.

Research staff

Tariq Rauf is the Director of the Disarmament, Arms Control and Non-Proliferation Programme.