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Hiroshima for Global Peace

Chapter 2 Nuclear Non-Proliferation1 (1) Acceptance and Compliance with Nuclear Non-Proliferation Obligations

Chapter 2 Nuclear Non-Proliferation1

(1) Acceptance and Compliance with Nuclear Non-Proliferation Obligations

A) Accession to the NPT

The Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) has 191 adherents (including North Korea, the Holy See and Palestine). Among the current 193 United Nations (UN) Member States, those remaining outside the NPT are: India and Pakistan, both of which tested and declared having nuclear weapons in 1998; Israel, which is widely believed to possess them; South Sudan, which declared its independence and joined the United Nations in July 2011, and does not possess any nuclear weapons; and, arguably, North Korea.

North Korea declared its withdrawal from the NPT in 2003, but there is no agreement among the states parties on North Korea’s official status with regard to the NPT. It has refused to return to the Treaty despite UN Security Council resolutions (UNSCRs) demanding that it do so at an early date.

B) Compliance with Articles I and II of the NPT and the UNSC resolutions on non-proliferation

North Korea
Since the NPT entered into force, no case of non-compliance with Articles I and II of the Treaty has been officially reported by the United Nations or any other international organization.2 However, if North Korea’s withdrawal is not interpreted as legally valid or if it acquired nuclear weapons before announcing its withdrawal from the NPT, such acquisition of nuclear weapons would constitute noncompliance with Article II. The U.S. Department of State clearly stated in its 2017 report, titled “Adherence to and Compliance with Arms Control, Nonproliferation, and Disarmament Agreements and Commitments,” that North Korea was in violation of its obligations under Articles II and III of the NPT and in non-compliance with its International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) Safeguards Agreement at the time it announced its withdrawal from the NPT in 2003.3

UNSCR 1787, adopted in October 2006, stipulates that: [T]he DPRK shall abandon all nuclear weapons and existing nuclear programmes in a complete, verifiable and irreversible manner, shall act strictly in accordance with the obligations applicable to parties under the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons and the terms and conditions of its Safeguards Agreement (IAEA INFCIRC/403) and shall provide the IAEA transparency measures extending beyond these requirements, including such access to individuals, documentation, equipments and facilities as may be required and deemed necessary by the IAEA.4

The Security Council also decided that North Korea “shall abandon all other existing weapons of mass destruction and ballistic missile programme in a complete, verifiable and irreversible manner.” In defiance, North Korea has failed to respond to the UN Security Council’s decisions, and has continued nuclear weapon and ballistic missilerelated activities, including its sixth nuclear test in September 2017.
In 2018, however, North Korea suddenly initiated a diplomatic offensive: It actively pursued to have dialogues with South Korea and the United States; and the inter-Korean and U.S.-North Korean summits were held, where Pyongyang affirmed a commitment to “work toward complete denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula.”

In his New Year’s address in January 2019, North Korean Supreme Leader Kim Jong Un reiterated his intention to establish a permanent peace regime on the Korean Peninsula and “advance towards” complete denuclearization, as well as a pledge not to produce, test, use or proliferate nuclear weapons. On the other hand, he also stated: “[I]f the United States does not keep the promise it made in the eyes of the world, and out of miscalculation of our people’s existence, it attempts to unilaterally enforce something upon us and persists in imposing obligations and pressure against our Republic, we may be compiled to find a new way for defending the sovereign of the country and the supreme interests of the state and for achieving peace and stability of the Korean Peninsula.”5

Prior to the second US-North KoreanbSummit in February 2019, North Korea repeatedly called on the United States to ease and lift sanctions, and U.S. officials implied that they would not seek a complete declaration of the North Korean nuclear-related assets as the first step toward denuclearization.6 This contributed to a view that a bilateral deal might be struck which would be in favor of North Korea. However, the meeting was broken off early, with no agreed statement. North Korea demanded the lifting of sanctions imposed by the UN Security Council in 2016 and 2017 in return for dismantling the nuclear material production facilities in Yongbyon. Rejecting this, the United States demanded North Korea’s complete denuclearization, including secret enrichment facilities outside Yongbyon. The United States sought a “big deal” in which all UN and U.S. sanctions would be lifted in exchange for the “final and fully verified denuclearization (FFVD)” by North Korea.

For the rest of the year there was no progress in DPRK-US talks, especially due to differences in their approaches to denuclearization. North Korea consistently referred to “denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula,” by which it meant including the U.S. “nuclear umbrella” over South Korea.7 The United States argued that the only nuclear weapons on the Korean Peninsula were those produced by North Korea. In April, Kim Jong Un posed an end-of-year deadline for the United States to change its approach to nuclear talks, saying there would not again be as good an opportunity as at Hanoi. While harshly criticizing the United States, however, Kim sought to remain on good terms with President Trump.

There was a short glimmer of hope on June 30, when President Trump made a surprise visit to Panmunjom after the G20 Osaka Summit. He met with Chairman Kim Jong Un for an hour, and by crossing the Military Demarcation Line he became the first sitting U.S. president to enter North Korea. The only agreement, however, was to resume working-level talks.
It took until October 5, for a workinglevel meeting to be held in Stockholm, which North Korea abruptly ended after one day. Although the U.S. said it “brought creative ideas,” North Korea’s chief negotiator Kim Myong Gil blamed the U.S. “old stance and attitude.” He also said, “The U.S. raises expectations and offered suggestions like flexible approach, new methods and creative solutions, but they have discontinued us highly, and dampened our enthusiasm for negotiations by bringing nothing to the negotiation table.”8 In the talks, North Korea reportedly argued that the United States should “sincerely responds” to previous measures taken by Pyongyang, and demanded the U.S. complete and irreversible dismantlement of the “hostile policies,” guarantee of the regime existence and lifting of sanctions.9

North Korea repeated its year-end deadline for U.S. concessions, and showed no interest in further engagement. Kim Kye Gwan, adviser to the North Korean Foreign Ministry, emphasized in November: “we are no longer interested in [U.S.-North Korean summit meetings] that bring nothing to us. As we have got nothing in return, we will no longer gift the U.S. president with something he can boast of…If the U.S. truly wants to keep on dialogue with the DPRK, it had better make a bold decision to drop its hostile policy towards the DPRK.”10 In December, Ambassador to the United Nations Kim Sung told that the U.S. pursuit of “sustained and substantial dialogue” was a “time-saving trick” to benefit a “domestic political agenda.” He also said, “We do not need to have lengthy talks with the U.S. now and the denuclearization is already gone out of the negotiation table.”11 Furthermore, North Korea reopened criticisms of President Trump, which had been restrained until then.

Meanwhile, North Korea did not test nuclear weapons or long-range missiles, as it had pledged in 2018. However, it tested short-range missiles and multiple rocket launchers more than 20 times in 2019. In addition, North Korea launched a new type of submarinelaunched ballistic missile (SLBM), the “Pukkuksong-3” in October.

Pyongyang also threatened to resume nuclear and long-range missile tests should the United States not offer any new concessions.12 Notwithstanding North Korea’s stated commitment to work toward “denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula,” the U.S. intelligence agencies assess that “North Korea will seek to retain its WMD capabilities and is unlikely to completely give up its nuclear weapons and production capabilities, because its leaders ultimately view nuclear weapons as critical to regime survival.”13

The E3/EU+3 (France, Germany and the United Kingdom/European Union plus China, Russia and the United States) and Iran agreed the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) on July 14, 2015, which stipulates that Iran accepts restrictions on its nuclear activities, including uranium enrichment, and other parties ease or lift sanctions against Iran. With two minor exception concerning heavy water accumulation in 2016, quarterly IAEA reports repeatedly confirmed Iran’s adherence to its nuclear obligations under the JCPOA.

However, President Trump criticized the agreement even before his inauguration, and finally he announced withdrawal from the Iran nuclear deal, and signed an executive order to reimpose sanctions against Iran in May 2018.

For a year afterwards, Iran continued to comply with its own commitments to the JCPOA. After the U.S. withdrawal, various efforts have been made mainly by European participants in order to maintain the agreement and Iran’s compliance. In January 2019, France, Germany, and the United Kingdom established the Instrument in Support of Trade Exchanges (INSTEX), a special-purpose vehicle (SPV) for the purpose of enabling financial transactions and trade with Iran without the U.S. dollar transactions.

Such efforts, however, failed to keep Iran fully compliant. European financial institutions and companies concerned about losing the U.S. market due to U.S. secondary sanctions have hesitated to join INSTEX. Iran stated on May 15, 2019 that it suspended the implementation of its obligations under the JCPOA regarding the limits of storage of low-enriched uranium (LEU) and heavy water. It also warned to resume production of uranium at an excessive enrichment level of the JCPOA ceiling (3.67%) unless oil and financial transactions were guaranteed by JCPOA participants other than the United States within 60 days.

The United States called for negotiations with Iran while gradually bolstering economic sanctions as “maximum pressure” against Iran. On May 9, President Trump on Twitter suggested sitting down with Iran to “make a deal.” The following month, Secretary of State Michael R. Pompeo also stated that the United States was “prepared to engage in a conversation with no pre-conditions if Iran behaved like a normal nation.”14 In response, Iranian President Hassanal Rouhani said, “The party who left the negotiating table and upended an agreement must come back to normal conditions,”15 and supreme leader Ayatollah Khamenei reiterated Iran’s refusal to talk to the United States.16 Meanwhile, in what some saw as a contradiction of the stated interest in negotiating, the U.S. Treasury Department in May and June, respectively, added Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei and Foreign Minister Javad Zarif to its list of sanctioned individuals.

At the end of June, the remaining JCPOA participants confirmed in highlevel talks that the INSTEX had been made operational and the first transactions were being processed.17 Still, Iran’s Deputy Foreign Minister Seyed Araguchi insisted that it was still inadequate since European countries had not yet imported Iranian crude oil. It has also been pointed out that the INSTEX has not worked as expected.18 The United States, on the other hand, criticized INSTEX as an attempt to evade the U.S. sanctions. U.S. Vice President Mike Pence said, “It’s an illadvised step that will only strengthen Iran, weaken EU, and create still more distance between Europe and the United States.”19

Regarding Japan’s efforts, Prime Minister Shinzo Abe visited Iran, where he met with Supreme Leader Khamenei and President Rouhani to urge them to resolve the nuclear issue and ease tensions. However, on June 13, the same day as the Japan-Iran summit meeting, two oil tankers—one of them was operated by a Japanese company— were attacked, reportedly with limpet mines, near the Strait of Hormuz. The United States blamed the attack on Iran’s Revolutionary Guards (IRGC) which Iran denied. Furthermore, on May 20, Iran shot down a U.S. drone near the Persian Gulf. The following day, President Trump said that while he had approved a retaliatory military strike against Iranian radar and missile launchers, among other targets, he ordered the operation suspended shortly before the strike because of the expected civilian casualties.

Amid rising tensions between the United States and Iran, on July 1, the IAEA reported that Iran’s stockpile of enriched uranium exceeded the limit set by the JCPOA.20 Iran also reaffirmed on the same day that it had stockpiled more low-enriched uranium than was allowed under the JCPOA.21 In addition, Iran announced on July 8 that it had reached levels of around 4.5% enrichment, above the 3.67% limit in the accord, and warned that Iran could go as high as 20% in the future if necessary.22
On September 4, as the third phase of partial suspension of implementing the JCPOA, President Rouhani ordered: “The Atomic Energy Organization of Iran will be obliged to immediately start research and development on whatever technical needs the country has, and set aside all R&D commitments stipulated in the [JCPOA].”23 The IAEA also reaffirmed on the September 8 that Iran installed or was installing 22 IR-4, one IR-5, 30 IR-6 and three IR-6s.24

In order to prevent the collapse of the JCPOA, various approaches and efforts were made to Iran, mainly by France, but the situation did not improve. At a joint press conference held by the leaders of the United States and France after the G7 summit meeting in August, French President Emmanuel Macron said, “I hope that in the next few weeks, based on our discussions, we will be able to achieve” a meeting between Presidents Trump and Rouhani. President Trump also said, “We’re not looking for leadership change…We’re looking for no nuclear weapons, no ballistic missiles, and a longer period of time…If the circumstances were correct or right, I would certainly agree to [meet with President Rouhani].”25 In September, French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves le Drian mentioned that France had proposed offering Iran about US$15 billion in credit lines until year-end if Tehran came fully back into compliance with the JCPOA.26 However, the United States ruled out providing any sanction waivers to accommodate a French proposal to extend a credit line to Iran;27 rather, it imposed additional sanctions on Iran. President Trump sought a summit meeting at the UN in September, to which President Hassan Rouhani refused to agree unless the U.S. first announced a lifting of sanctions. This dispute over sequencing reflected Iran’s deep distrust.
On November 4, as the fourth phase of the partial suspension of the JCPOA implementation, Iran announced that it would introduce additional 30 IR-6 centrifuges (totally 60 IR-6 would be in operation), which are 10 times more powerful than IR-1. The next day, President Rouhani announced that Iran would start injecting uranium gas into 1,044 centrifuges at its Fordow nuclear facility,28 where enrichment activities are prohibited by JCPOA. The Iranian Atomic Energy Agency (AEOI) announced that it started enriching uranium on the November 7, and President Rouhani emphasized that the step was reversible if other parties to the JCPOA upheld their commitments.29

In December, at a meeting of the JCPOA member countries (except the United States), Britain, France and Germany mentioned the possibility of triggering a so-called “dispute resolution mechanism” which could lead to the resumption of UN sanctions on Iran. In response, Iran warned that it would consider its commitments to the IAEA if EU states were to trigger UN sanctions.30 On January 6, 2020, Iran announced that it would no longer comply with the JCPOA regarding the levels of enrichment and storage of enriched uranium, and research and development of uranium enrichment. At the same time, however, Iran stated that it would continue to cooperate with the IAEA, and would comply fully with the JCPOA if the United States were to lift its sanctions on Iran.

According to the quarterly report on the Iranian nuclear issues in relation to the implementation of the IAEA safeguards and the JCPOA, submitted by the IAEA Director-General on November 11, 2019:31
➢ The Agency verified that Iran had begun enriching UF6 above 3.67%U-235. Iran has been enriching uranium up to 4.5% U-235;
➢ In contrast to the 202.8kg limit set by the JCPOA, the stockpile comprised 212.6 kg of uranium enriched up to 3.67% U-235, produced prior to July 8, 2019, and 159.7 kg of uranium enriched up to 4.5% U-235, produced since July 8, 2019; and
➢ The Agency has detected natural uranium particles of anthropogenic origin at a location in Iran not declared to the Agency. It is essential for Iran to continue interactions with the Agency to resolve the matter as soon as possible. Ongoing interactions between the Agency and Iran relating to Iran’s implementation of its Safeguards Agreement and Additional Protocol require full and timely cooperation by Iran.

The uranium particles mentioned above are considered to be found in samples taken from a location in Tehran’s Turquzabad district, or a “secret atomic warehouse” as described by Israel.32

On November 18, the IAEA also announced that Iran’s stock of heavy water stockpile was 131.5 tons.33 (The upper limit set by JCPOA is 130 tons.)
In the meantime, the United States gradually bolstered the non-military sanctions on Iran, including:
➢ Designating the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) as the “foreign terrorist organization” in April;
➢ Ending all waivers on imports of Iranian crude oil (announced on April 22), and imposing sanctions against Chinese companies for violating import bans on July 22;
➢ Banning all trade in steel, aluminum and copper by Iran on May 8;
➢ Imposing sanctions against the petrochemical industry which is allegedly provided financial aid by the IRGC on June 7;
➢ Imposing sanctions against individuals and organizations linked to Iran’s oil transport network for their support of the IRGC Quds Force on September 4; and
➢ Announcing that the United States will no longer waive sanctions related to five projects for civil nuclear technologies conducted by Russia, China and European countries at the Iran’s Fordow nuclear plant on November 18, after Tehran resumed uranium enrichment at the underground site.

Withdrawal from the NPT

Although Article X-1 of the NPT contains some guidance on how a state can legitimately withdraw from the treaty, there remains a lack of clarity over some aspects of this process. Concerns have focused on a state choosing to withdraw from the NPT, after first acquiring nuclear weapons in violation of the Treaty. Japan, South Korea and other several Western countries have proposed measures to prevent the right of withdrawal from being abused.

At the 2019 Preparatory Committee (PrepCom) for the 2020 NPT Review Conference (RevCon), the so-called Vienna Group of Ten in its working paper argued that “withdrawal from the Treaty carries inherent risks to nonproliferation efforts and could constitute a threat to international peace and security,” and proposed that exercise of the right of withdrawal under Article X of the Treaty be governed by the following principles:34
➢ The right of withdrawal from the NPT can only be exercised in the face of extraordinary events related to the subject matter of the treaty;
➢ The withdrawing State is still liable for violations of the Treaty perpetrated prior to withdrawal;
➢ Withdrawal should not affect any right, obligation or legal situation between the withdrawing State and each of the other States parties created through implementation of the Treaty prior to withdrawal, including those related to IAEA safeguards;
➢ Every diplomatic effort should be made to persuade the withdrawing State to reconsider its decision;
➢ All nuclear materials, equipment and technology acquired by a State party under Article IV prior to withdrawal must remain under IAEA safeguards or fallback safeguards even after withdrawal; and
➢ Nuclear-supplying States should be encouraged to exercise their right to incorporate dismantling and/or return clauses or fallback safeguards in the event of withdrawal into contracts or other arrangements concluded with the withdrawing State, and to adopt standard clauses for this purpose.

At the 2015 NPT Review Conference (RevCon),35 Western countries insisted that withdrawal from the NPT should be made difficult by adding several conditions, while they also acknowledged the right of states parties to withdraw. Among NWS, Chinese and Russian positions on this issue seem more cautious than those of France, the United Kingdom and the United States. Some NNWS, including the Non-Aligned Movement (NAM)
countries, argue that there is no need to revise or reinterpret Article X on grounds that withdrawal from the NPT is the right of all state parties. At the 2019 NPT PrepCom, Iran expressed harsh criticism in the following manner:
Iran would never agree to any proposal that would challenge, constrain or condition the sovereign right of States parties to withdraw from the Treaty. This inherent right has been integral part of the compromise that led to the conclusion of the NPT. While the U.S. is withdrawing from international instruments and institutions one after another, it is paradoxically attempting to set strict conditions for non-nuclear-weapon States for exercising their right to withdraw from the NPT…Extraordinary events related to subject matter of the Treaty may include, inter alia, noncompliance with nuclear disarmament obligations, violation of obligation to facilitate exchange in nuclear technology and civil nuclear cooperation, military attack against safeguarded nuclear facilities of a non-nuclear-weapon States and application of unilateral sanctions against a non-nuclear-weapon State in a manner which impedes the exercise of the right of that party to develop nuclear technology for peaceful purposes…[T]he most effective way to prevent future withdrawal from NPT is to ensure full implementation of all its provisions, without selectivity, double standards or discriminatory approaches.36

Alleged interest of acquiring nuclear weapons
In recent years, Saudi Arabia’s activities have been the subject of considerable public attention. Riyadh plans to build 16 nuclear reactors for power generation over the next 25 years. Its first research reactor is in the process of construction.

Riyadh explains that the purpose of its expansive nuclear plan is strictly civilian, that is, to increase both domestic energy supply and to diversity beyond oil exports. However, Saudi Arabia, which has confronted Iran, has repeatedly made clear its intention to acquire nuclear weapons should Iran develop them. There is thus concern that Saudi Arabian nuclear development would increase the possibility of nuclear proliferation. Adding to the concern, in June 2019, it was reported that Saudi Arabia was significantly accelerating its development of ballistic missiles with China’s support.37

Elsewhere in the region, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan for the first time implied an interest in nuclear weapons when he said on September 4, “Several countries have missiles with nuclear warheads, not one or two. But…we can’t have them. This I cannot accept.”38 He also stated at the UN General Assembly on September 24, “the position of nuclear power should either be forbidden for all or permissible for everyone.”39 While he has not clearly stated his intention, there are concerns that he may be interested in acquiring nuclear weapons.

C) Nuclear-Weapon-Free Zones

Treaties establishing nuclear-weaponfree zones (NWFZs) have entered into force in Latin America (Tlatelolco Treaty), the South Pacific (Rarotonga Treaty), Southeast Asia (Bangkok Treaty), Africa (Pelindaba Treaty), and Central Asia (Central Asian NWFZ Treaty). In addition, Mongolia declared its territory a nuclear-weapon-free zone at the UN General Assembly (UNGA) in 1992, and the UNGA has been adopting a resolution entitled “Mongolia’s International Security and Nuclear-Weapon Free-Status” every two years since 1998, in support of Mongolia’s declaration.40

Regarding efforts toward establishing a Middle East Zone Free of WMD, the convening of an international conference, agreed at the 2010 NPT RevCon, could not be achieved before the 2015 NPT RevCon. Furthermore, at the latter RevCon, a final document was not adopted due to a lack of consensus on the language regarding that international conference.
The NAM in its working paper submitted to the 2018 NPT PrepCom urged the convening of the conference no later than 2020.41 On the other hand, the United States opposed addressing the Middle Eastern issue in the NPT review cycle (especially in the form that co-sponsors of the 1995 Middle East Resolution, including the United States, bear responsibility), arguing that, among others, the NPT review cycle cannot be the primary mechanism for progress on a Middle East Zone Free of WMD.

The League of Arab States submitted a draft decision, titled “Convening a conference on a Middle East Zone Free of nuclear weapons and other weapons of mass destruction,” to the First Committee of the UN General Assembly in 2018. In this draft decision, the co-sponsors requested to, inter alia: entrust to the Secretary-General the convening, no later than 2019 for a duration of one week at the United Nations Headquarters, of a conference on the establishment of a Middle East Zone Free of WMD; and to convene annual sessions of the conference for a duration of one week at UN Headquarters until the conference concludes the elaboration of a legally binding treaty establishing a Middle East Zone Free of WMD. The decision was narrowly adopted despite the abstention of many countries, including Western countries.42

At the 2019 NPT PrepCom, the Arab Group, in its working paper, welcomed the adoption of the decision by the General Assembly to convene a conference on a Middle East WMD Free Zone, and urged all parties invited, in particular Israel, to participate.43 Iraq also emphasized the significance of establishing such a zone, arguing that it was practically a “fourth pillar” of the NPT. The NAM countries also requested to establish a subsidiary body under Main Committee II of the 2020 NPT Review Conference to assess the implementation of the resolution on the Middle East, adopted by the 1995 Review and Extension Conference, and proposed “the establishment of a standing committee…to follow up intersessionally on the implementation of the recommendations made by the Review Conference concerning Israel’s prompt accession to the [NPT] and the placement of all its nuclear facilities under the IAEA full-scope safeguards, and to report to the 2025 RevCon and its Preparatory Committee.”44
On the other hand, the United States stated: “The United States continues to support the goal of a Middle East free of weapons of mass destruction and delivery systems…We remain convinced that such efforts must be pursued voluntarily on the basis of arrangements mutually agreed upon by all the regional states, consistent with international practice. We regret the UN General Assembly’s decision last October…to convene a conference on such a zone despite the absence of consensus support among the regional states… In the absence of participation by all regional states, the United States will not attend the conference.”45
The Conference on the Establishment of a Middle East Zone Free of Nuclear Weapons and all other Weapons of Mass Destruction was convened at the UN Headquarters on November 18-22,2019. While Israel and the United States, which opposed the decision adopted at the UN General Assembly in 2018, did not participate, almost all of other Middle Eastern countries, including Egypt, Iran and Saudi Arabia, as well as four other NWS, attended the conference. In the political declaration adopted by the conference, participants declared, inter alia, their “intent and solemn commitment to pursue in accordance with relevant international resolutions, and in an open and inclusive manner with all invited States, the elaboration of a legally binding treaty to establish a Middle East Zone Free of nuclear weapons and other weapons of mass destruction, on the basis of arrangements freely arrived at by consensus by the States of the region.”46 They also agreed that future conference sessions will be held for a duration of one week starting on the third Monday of November of each year.47

At past UNGAs from 1980 to 2017, a resolution titled “Establishment of a nuclear-weapon-free zone in the region of the Middle East” was adopted without a vote. However, the resolution in 2019, following the previous year, was taken to a vote: Israel and the United States were against, and three countries, including the United Kingdom, abstained.48

Concerning Northeast Asia and South Asia, while initiatives for establishing NWFZs have been proposed by nongovernmental groups in the respective regions, there are few indications that state parties in these regions are taking any serious initiative toward such a goal.
One exception is Mongolia, which in its report submitted to the 2015 NPT RevCon expressed a willingness to “[p]lay an active role in promoting the idea of establishing a nuclear weapon-free zone in north-east Asia.”49

1 This chapter is written by Hirofumi Tosaki.
2 No international body is explicitly mandated with a responsibility for assessing compliance with these articles, apart from the IAEA’s safeguards verification mandate.
3 The U.S. Department of State, “Adherence to and Compliance with Arms Control, Nonproliferation, and Disarmament Agreements and Commitments,” August 2019, p. 26.
4 S/RES/1718, October 14, 2006. The UN Security Council Resolution 1874 in June 2009 also demanded that North Korea “immediately comply fully with its obligations under relevant Security Council resolutions, in particular resolution 1718 (2006).”
5 “New Year Address of Supreme Leader Kim Jong Un,” KCNA, January 1, 2019,
6 Edward Wong, “U.S. Appears to Soften Timing for List of North Korea’s Nuclear Assets,” New York Times, January 31, 2019,
7 North Korea’s state-run Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) said in commentary, “When we refer to the Korean peninsula, they include both the area of the DPRK and the area of south Korea where aggression troops including the nuclear weapons of the U.S. are deployed.” “North Korea Media Says Denuclearization Includes Ending ‘U.S. Nuclear Threat,’” Reuters, December 20, 2018,
8 “North Korea Breaks off Nuclear Talks with US,” DW, October 5, 2019,
9 Hyung-Jin Kim, “North Korea: No More Talks Until US Ends ‘Hostile Policy,’” Associated Press, October 6, 2019,
10 “Advisor to DPRK Foreign Ministry Issues Statement,” KCNA, November 18, 2019,
11 Dakin Andone and Elizabeth Joseph, “North Korea’s UN Ambassador Says Denuclearization is off the Table in Talks with US,” CNN, December 7, 2019,
12 Hyung-Jin Kim, “N. Korea Threatens to Resume Nuke, Long-Range Missile Tests,” Associated Press, October 10, 2019,
13 Dan Coats, “Remarks,” Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, January 29, 2019,
14 David Brunnstrom and John Revill, “U.S. Prepared to Talk to Iran with ‘No Preconditions,’ Iran Sees ‘Word-Play,’” Reuters, June 2, 2019,
15 “US Must Get Back to Normal Conditions: Rouhani,” Press TV, June 3, 2019,
16 “Iran’s Khamenei: Tehran Will Not Abandon Its Missile Program,” Reuters, June 4, 2019,
17 “Chair’s Statement Following the 28 June 2019 Meeting of the Joint Commission of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action,” European External Action Service, June 28, 2019,
18 See, for instance, Alexandra Brzozowski, “INSTEX Fails to Support EU-Iran Trade as Nuclear Accord Falters,” EURACTIV, January 14, 2020,
19 Joe Gould, “Pence Calls on EU Allies to Withdraw from Nuclear Deal in Latest Trans-Atlantic Rift,” Military Times, February 14, 2019,
20 GOV/INF/2019/8, July 1, 2019.
21 Jon Gambrell and Amir Vahdat, “Iran Breaches Uranium Stockpile Limit Set by Nuclear Deal,” Associated Press, July 2, 2019,
22 “Iran’s Uranium Enrichment Breaks Nuclear Deal Limit. Here’s What That Means,” NPR, July 7, 2019,
23 Darryl Coote, “Iran to Develop Nuclear Centrifuges in Defiance of JCPOA,” UPI, September 5, 2019,
24 GOV/INF/2019/10, September 8, 2019.
25 “Remarks by President Trump and President Macron of France in Joint Press Conference,” Biarritz,France, August 26, 2019,
26 John Irish and Parisa Hafezi, “France Pushes $15 Billion Credit Line Plan for Iran, If U.S. Allows It,”Reuters, September 3, 2019,
27 “U.S. Official Rules out Sanctions Waivers for Iran Credit Line Plan,” Radio Free Europe, September 4, 2019,
28 “Iran Starts Injecting Uranium Gas into Centrifuges, Further Unraveling Nuclear Accord,” Press From, November 5, 2019,
29 “Iran Nuclear Deal: Fordo Uranium Centrifuges to be Injected with Gas,” BBC, November 5, 2019,
30 “Iran Nuclear Deal Signatories Meet in Vienna As Accord Nears Collapse,” France 24, December 6, 2019,
31 GOV/2019/55, November 11, 2019.
32 “Iran Nuclear Deal: IAEA Finds Uranium Particles at Undeclared Site,” BBC, November 11, 2019,
33 “IAEA: Iran’s Heavy Water Stock Exceeds Authorized Limit,” AFP, November 18, 2019,
34 NPT/CONF.2020/PC.III/WP.5, March 15, 2019.
35 On the arguments and proposals made at the 2015 NPT RevCon by countries surveyed in this report,see the Hiroshima Report 2016.
36 “Statement by Iran,” Specific issue—Improving the effectiveness of the strengthened review process, 2019 NPT PrepCom, May 7, 2019.
37 Phil Mattingly, Zachary Cohen and Jeremy Herb, “US Intel Shows Saudi Arabia Escalated Its Missile Program with Help from China,” CNN, June 5, 2019,
38 Erdogan Says It’s Unacceptable That Turkey Can’t Have Nuclear Weapons,” Reuters, September 4, 2019,
39 Hannon Bugos, “Turkey Shows Nuclear Weapons Interest,” Arms Control Today, Vol. 49, No. 9 (October 2019), p. 25.
40 53/77D, December 4, 1998.
41 NPT/CONF.2020/PC.II/WP.16, March 22, 2018.
42 The draft decision was sent to the General Assembly from its First Committee by 103 in favor, 3 against and 71 abstentions, and then adopted at the UNGA by a narrow margin—88 in favor, 4 against (Israel, the United States and others) and 75 abstentions (Australia, Austria, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, France, India, Japan, South Korea, Mexico, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Poland, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey, the United Kingdom and others).
43 NPT/CONF.2020/PC.III/WP.20, March 29, 2019.
44 NPT/CONF.2020/PC.III/WP.19, April 4, 2019.
45 “Statement by the United States,” Specific issue—Regional issues, including with respect to the Middle East and implementation of the 1995 Middle East Resolution, 2019 NPT PrepCom, May 6, 2019.
46 “Political Declaration of the Conference on the Establishment of a Middle East Zone Free of Nuclear Weapons and Other Weapons of Mass Destruction,” New York, 22 November 2019.
47 See, for instance, “Conference on the Establishment of a Middle East Zone Free of Nuclear Weapons and Other Weapons of Mass Destruction,” United Nations,; “Conference on Nuclear- and WMD-Free Zone in the Middle East Adopts Political Declaration,” Reaching Critical Will,
48 A/RES/74/30, December 12, 2019.
49 NPT/CONF.2015/8, February 25, 2015.

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