The Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT) was concluded in 1968 and entered into force 1970. It sets out basic obligations, norms and rules intended to halt the spread of nuclear weapons, with provisions on non-proliferation, nuclear disarmament, safeguards for nuclear materials and civilian facilities, uses of nuclear energy for ‘peaceful purposes’ and nuclear-weapon-free zones. 184 states have joined the NPT as non-nuclear-weapon states (NNWS), thereby accepting non-acquisition obligations and safeguards. Defining five as nuclear-weapon states (NWS), the Treaty imposed obligations on them to pursue nuclear disarmament and not to assist other states to acquire nuclear weapons. In 1995, the NPT was extended indefinitely with a strengthened review process comprising five-yearly Review Conferences and interim Preparatory Committee Meetings (PrepComs).

The Acronym Institute has published many reports analyzing the NPT’s PrepComs and Conferences and promoting constructive ideas for strengthening the regime and implementing the disarmament, non-proliferation and security objectives.  The most recent Acronym analyses, including 'Decline or Transform: Nuclear Disarmament and Security Beyond the NPT Review Process' and the NPT briefing series '2010 & Beyond', are available here (in date order).  Acronym Institute’s Executive Director, Dr Rebecca Johnson, is one of the world’s foremost experts on the NPT, providing strategic initiatives and detailed reporting on disarmament and non-proliferation since 1990.

More information on the NPT, including links to the latest news, plus articles and blogs from the Acronym Institute, can be found on the main NPT page in the Directory.

NPT Related Content

28 May 2015

After the NPT Review Conference collapsed in disarray last week with disagreement over new proposals for a Middle East disarmament conference in 2016, humanitarian initiatives for a nuclear weapons prohibition treaty look like the only way forward.

After a tense standoff that carried...

Dr Rebecca Johnson
4 August 2014

Wars may be started for trivial or mistaken reasons, as happened in 1914, but they are fuelled by arms industries. It’s time to look at the alternative history of efforts to prohibit the weapons that feed wars, causing widespread humanitarian suffering.