Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT)

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The Non-Proliferation Treaty, also referred to as the NPT or TNP, is an international agreement with the goal of preventing the spread of nuclear weapons and the technology that goes along with it. Promoting cooperation in the peaceful use of nuclear energy and attaining total nuclear disarmament were two other objectives of the treaty.

The Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT) entered into force 50 years ago in the year 2020.

What is the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty?
  • The Eighteen Nation Committee on Disarmament, a UN-sponsored organization with headquarters in Switzerland, drew up, wrote down, and negotiated the treaty.
  • The twin Japanese cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki were destroyed by the United States on August 6 and 9 of 1945 using the terrifying and potent Atom Bomb. World War 2 was ended by the action, albeit at a tremendous cost. Between the two cities, there were a total of 129,000 to 226,000 fatalities, along with countless more injuries and radiation illness cases.
  • Along with the potential for the weapon to be misused, the aftermath of the bombs was a substantial source of concern for international leaders. Calls for a safeguard to guarantee a Nuclear Arms Control were made in response to this worry. In 1961, a U.N. resolution urged the creation of a treaty to stop a nuclear arms race. Later, this agreement would evolve into the Non-Proliferation Treaty.
Who has signed the Non-Proliferation treaty?

The Non-Proliferation Treaty has 187 parties, more than any previous arms restriction treaty, and has been in operation since 1970 after being opened for signature in 1968.

The Non-Proliferation Treaty forbids nuclear states from assisting non-nuclear states in obtaining weapons while also forbidding non-nuclear governments from getting nuclear weapons. while working for complete disarmament. Verification of treaty compliance is carried out by the International Atomic Energy Agency, which replaced the United Nations Atomic Energy Commission. The United Nations Security Council then enforces compliance.

Nine countries in all are in possession of nuclear weapons.

The treaty has been ratified by five countries: the US, the UK, France, Russia, and China. The remaining four countries, namely North Korea, India, Pakistan, and Israel, have not ratified the agreement and are therefore not parties to it.

Why India never signed the treaty?
  • According to the Indian government’s position, the treaty is unfair in its current form because it essentially declares that the five World War II winners have the right to own nuclear weapons while holding the other countries without such weapons responsible for the whims and fancies of those who do. In essence, the deal creates a nuclear “have” and “have-not” world.
  • The five countries must either denuclearize, in India’s view, or everyone should have the same rights as those who already hold them. India’s initial nuclear tests were primarily motivated by the increase of tensions with one of its nuclear-armed neighbors, namely China. In response to what Pakistan saw as India’s “naked aggression,” and in response to India’s escalation, Pakistan carried out its own nuclear test.
What are the drawbacks of the treaty?
  • The treaty’s primary shortcomings are that it never held the five countries that had nuclear weapons at the time it was signed accountable. The treaty’s enforcement is also a major source of worry at the same time. North Korea detonated its first bomb in 2006 despite the prospect of international economic sanctions and other dire consequences. Even Iran is now prepared to take the same path.
  • The treaty even features significant gaps that other countries could use to establish their own nuclear weapons program.
  • Whatever the case, it is undeniable that the Non-Proliferation Treaty has made the world a better place. According to predictions, roughly 25 countries will have nuclear weapons. However, its mere existence has decreased it to 9.
  • Although the NPT was not the primary cause of this, the safeguard’s sheer existence can at least promise a period of peace, and if the current flaws are closed, it will fulfill this promise.
Issues with Non-Proliferation Treaty

The treaty is criticized by NNWS as discriminatory because it primarily focuses on avoiding horizontal proliferation and places no restrictions on vertical proliferation.

In exchange for the NWS’s promise not to produce them, NNWS groupings demand that the NWS give up their arsenals and all future production.

The NWWS believes that the limitations on technology for Peaceful Nuclear Explosions (PNE) are unfair.

Failure of Disarmament Process
  • The NPT is primarily seen as a Cold War-era tool that fell short of its goal of establishing a credible disarmament mechanism.
  • The proposed treaty makes no concrete plans for disarmament, makes no mention of a moratorium on testing or a freeze on the development of fissile materials or nuclear weapons, and leaves out provisions for cuts and eliminations.
  • In contrast, it permitted the maintenance and growth of arsenals by mandating January 1, 1967, as the deadline for determining the NWS.

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