NPT Briefing Book 2022 Now Available

December 17, 2021
Jean du Preez

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Download the 2022 edition of the NPT Briefing Book

It is also available from King’s College London along with earlier editions.

About the NPT Briefing Book

The James Martin Center for Nonproliferation Studies (CNS), in partnership the Centre for Science and Security Studies (CSSS) at King’s College London, published a new edition of the Non-Proliferation Treaty Briefing Book. The Briefing Book is a reference guide containing a wide selection of documents related to the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT) and its review process. It is widely used by national delegations as well as members of the civil society as part of their preparation for NPT meetings.

The NPT Briefing Book was first published in 1990 by Professor John Simpson and Ben Saunders under the auspices of the Mountbatten Centre for International Studies at the University of Southampton. In 2012, the Briefing Book found a new home in CSSS and is produced in partnership with the James Martin Center for Nonproliferation Studies.

“Diplomats often refer to the NPT Briefing Book as the ‘NPT review process bible’. It has become an indispensable tool for their work.”

—Dr. William C. Potter, Founding Director of CNS and Professor of Nonproliferation Studies at the Middlebury Institute of International Studies in Monterey, CA

“Despite the disruption caused by Covid-19, there has been a lot of activity in multilateral nuclear diplomacy in anticipation of the Tenth review conference.”

“This new edition provides a detailed snapshot of these activities and key nuclear developments since the last edition was produced in 2019. The publication is intended to engage seasoned followers of the NPT review process as well as newcomers to the topic.”

—Dr Hassan Elbahtimy, editor of the new edition and Co-director of CSSS


Guide for the NPT Briefing Book 2022 Edition

By Dr. Hassan Elbahtimy (editor of the 2022 edition and Co-director of CSSS)

This edition of the Briefing Book is divided into two parts. Part I opens with an updated introductory guide to nuclear energy and nuclear weapons. It then provides a summary of the evolution of the NPT and its review process. In separate sections, a factual summary account of the proceedings and outcomes of preceding NPT Conferences is provided. This summary provides a brief snapshot of the evolution of the treaty and its review process.

Part II contains reference documents old and new, organised in thematic chapters. Each chapter is given a separate alphabetic code. The documents come from a variety of sources, although priority is given to official documents from international organisations and governments. In cases where a document belongs to two sections, it is kept only in one, and a reference to its location is inserted in the other. Not all documents are included in full. Some editorial judgement was applied, in the case of long documents, to include only relevant parts. When this is the case, the prompter ‘[Eds … ]’ has been used to show where the editorial scissors have been applied.

The content of the chapters is organised as follows:

  • Chapter A – The Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT)
    This chapter contains the full text of the treaty and the status of signatures and ratifications. The treaty has 191 state parties, with the latest accession being that of the State of Palestine, in 2015.
  • Chapter B – Materials related to the Tenth NPT Review Conference
    This chapter starts with documents addressing the procedural elements related to the RevCon that were agreed in the 2019 PrepCom. This includes the provisional agenda, the allocation of items to the RevCon Committees, and a list of background documentation requested. It also includes the 2019 PrepCom decision on the election of the president of the conference, which addressed the nomination of the Argentinian Ambassador Rafael Mariano Grossi (who was later replaced by Ambassador Gustavo Zlauvinen) and other conference officers, as well as the draft rules of procedure for the conference. The remainder of the chapter includes some key reports and working papers produced during the PrepCom. This includes the final report of the PrepCom, adopted in its third session (for reports of the first and second sessions, check earlier editions of the NPT Briefing Book). It also includes an ‘Inter-Chair’ working paper by the chairs of the first and second sessions of the review cycle, jointly submitted by Poland and the Netherlands. The chapter also includes the ‘reflections’ documents produced by each of the chairs of the three PrepComs, as well as the recommendations of the chair of the third session, issued as a working paper under the chair’s responsibility due to lack of consensus.
  • Chapter C – Materials from previous Review Conferences
    This chapter collects some of the key outcome documents from previous Review Conferences. In addition to excerpts from the Final Documents of the 2000 and 2010 Review Conferences, it includes the three decisions and the resolution on the Middle East agreed in the 1995 Review and Extension Conference as part of the indefinite extension package. As the last Review Conference in 2015 did not produce an outcome document, a short excerpt from the procedural report has been included.
  • Chapter D – Materials related to the establishment of a Zone Free of Weapons of Mass Destruction in the Middle East
    This chapter contains several documents reflecting some historical and more recent developments on the WMD Free Zone in the Middle East issue. It is divided into three sections. Section 1 contains press releases related to the postponement of the 2012 Middle East Conference (mandated by the 2010 NPT Review Conference). The section also contains NPT working papers that carry the views of some regional states, including a working paper presented by Israel in the last RevCon, and Arab and Iranian working papers presented during the 2019 PrepCom. Section 2 addresses the new Conference on the establishment of a Middle East Zone Free of Nuclear Weapons and Other Weapons of Mass Destruction. The conference held two session in New York: one in 2019 and another in 2021. The section includes the General Assembly decision that provided the mandate for the Conference. It also includes the final report of the first session (including the agenda and the programme of work) and the political declaration issued by the participating states. The second session of the Conference was held (after postponement related to Covid-19) from 29 November to 3 December 2021 and the chapter includes the final report that it produced. The section also includes the two First Committee resolutions related to the region, adopted in November 2021. The resolution titled ‘Establishment of a nuclear-weapon-free zone in the region of the Middle East’ is notable, as it has been subjected to a vote since 2018, and this year the US changed its vote from against to abstention.
  • Chapter E – P5 Conferences
    The NPT nuclear weapons states (referred to as the P5) have held regular meetings since 2009 (with a two-year hiatus in 2017 and 2018) dedicated to discussing confidence- building and nuclear disarmament. In December 2021, the P5 states met in Paris for their tenth conference. This chapter contains joint statements (and sometimes briefings, where no joint statement was agreed) from all conferences, charting the evolution of this process. France is the current coordinator of the group.
  • Chapter F – Declared Nuclear Policies by NPT NWSs
    This chapter includes a selection of public announcements on nuclear policy and doctrine by the five NPT nuclear weapons states (China, France, Russia, the UK and the US). For China, the section includes nuclear-related excerpts from the White Paper titled ‘China’s National Defense in the New Era’ that was released in 2019. For France, it includes excerpts of President Macron’s speech to the École de Guerre in Paris in February 2020, which he dedicated almost entirely to nuclear policy. The chapter also includes excerpts from the most recent French Defence and National Security Review, published in 2017. For Russia, the section includes ‘Basic Principles of State Policy of the Russian Federation on Nuclear Deterrence’, which outlines Russia’s nuclear posture and was released as an Executive Order by President Putin in June 2020. For the UK, the section includes the nuclear section from the ‘Integrated Review of Security, Defence, Development and Foreign Policy’ report released in March 2021, which has introduced some changes to UK nuclear policy. It also includes excerpts from a statement by the UK to the Conference on Disarmament, addressing these changes. For the US, the section includes the bullet point summary of the latest US Nuclear Posture Review, released in February 2018 (under the Tump administration), and nuclear-related sections from the US Interim National Security Guidance issued by the Biden administration.
  • Chapter G – Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons
    This chapter is divided into multiple sections. Section 1 includes the Treaty, which entered into force in 2021, and information on its signatures and ratifications. Section 2 includes relevant UN resolutions reflecting the Treaty’s journey: in 2016 on launching the negotiations; in 2017 following conclusion of treaty negotiations; and the most recent First Committee resolution on the TPNW, adopted in 2021 (with 123 states in favour, 16 abstentions and 42 against). Section 3 contains some statements reflecting the different positions on the new instrument, by various groups including the five NPT nuclear states, NATO, the initial sponsors of UN Resolution 73/48, and a 2020 open letter by several former world leaders in support of the Treaty. Section 4 includes information on the first meeting of state parties, scheduled for 2022.
  • Chapter H – Documents related to the Conference on the Humanitarian Impact of Nuclear Weapons
    This chapter contains some of the documents produced in the three Humanitarian Impact Conferences. It also includes some of statements reflecting positions on the humanitarian debate, most notably by Austria and Australia, each on behalf of different groups of states, in the 2015 RevCon. The chapter includes an excerpt from a 2019 NPT working paper on the humanitarian issue by supportive states, carrying recommendations on how the 2020 RevCon could address the issue. Finally, it also includes the operative paragraphs of the last UN First Committee resolution on the humanitarian consequences of nuclear weapons.
  • Chapter I – Bilateral Measures: Russia–United States
    This chapter captures aspects of the nuclear relations between Russia and the United States, particularly as these relate to their mutual arms control agreements, and is divided into a number of sections. Section 1 addresses New START and includes the text of the treaty, which entered into force in 2011. In 2021, the agreement was extended, and the section includes statements released by the US and Russia on the extension, in addition to a fact sheet providing an update on the status of the implementation of the treaty. Section 2 addresses the INF Treaty. In August 2019, the six-month notice of US withdrawal from the Intermediate Nuclear Forces (INF) took effect, and the section includes statements by US and Russia explaining their respective national positions on the demise of the treaty. Section 3 addresses the Open Skies Treaty. It includes documents from both the US and Russian governments related to the status of the Open Skies Treaty following US withdrawal (which took effect in November 2020), and Russia subsequently announcing its intention to withdraw. Section 4 addresses the Bilateral Strategic Stability Dialogue between Russia and the US. Since the historic Reagan–Gorbachev statement on nuclear weapons has featured prominently, it was included for reference in the section. On 16 June 2021, the Russian and US presidents, following their Geneva summit, produced a joint statement on strategic stability, which is included here. The section also includes a joint statement released after the second session of the bilateral Strategic Stability Dialogue. The statement outlines the creation of two interagency expert working groups: the Working Group on Principles and Objectives for Future Arms Control, and the Working Group on Capabilities and Actions with Strategic Effects.
  • Chapter J – Resolutions Adopted by the 76th Session of the UN General Assembly
    This chapter includes a selection of some of the UN resolutions adopted during the First Committee for the 76th ordinary session of the General Assembly. The section includes updated nuclear disarmament resolutions that represent different priorities and emphases on the issue, led by Japan, the New Agenda Coalition (NAC), and the Non-aligned Movement (NAM). The polarisation over disarmament was particularly evident in the discussions over the Japan-led resolution titled ‘Joint courses of action and future-oriented dialogue towards a world without nuclear weapons’ that was adopted after separate votes on eighteen of its paragraphs. The resolutions on the humanitarian consequences of nuclear weapons, TPNW, and Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty (CTBT), as well as the Middle East, stirred considerable debate despite having only technical updates from previous years, and are included in the relevant sections of this briefing book. The section also includes a resolution adopted on the Fissile Material Cutoff Treaty (FMCT), proposed by Canada (in the previous two years only a decision was proposed), as well as a decision on nuclear disarmament verification. The chapter also includes a US-proposed resolution on compliance (last tabled in 2017), as well as a Chinese-proposed resolution (the first in arms control in thirty years) titled ‘Promoting International Cooperation on Peaceful Uses in the Context of International Security’.
  • Chapter K – UN Security Council Resolutions
    This chapter contains the texts of four relevant UN Security Council resolutions: 1540, 1887, 1977 and 2310. The chapter also includes a Security Council Resolution that extends the work of the 1540 Committee until 28 February 2022. The German and Belgian presidencies of the Security Council held briefings on the NPT in the Council during their terms in 2019 and 2020, respectively, and each was followed by a statement in support of the treaty, also included in this section.
  • Chapter L – Nuclear Weapons Testing
    This chapter presents some of the relevant developments relating to the CTBT, which is yet to enter into force. Cuba and Comoros ratified the treaty in 2021, bringing the number of state parties to 170. The chapter includes the ‘Final Declaration and Measures to Promote the Entry into Force’ document produced by the last Article XIV Conference in 2021. The ‘Friends of the CTBT’ Group was not able to hold its biennial meeting in person, but foreign ministers of the group issued a joint video in support of the entry into force of the treaty. Some of the quotes from the video message are included in this chapter. The chapter also includes a joint statement by the foreign minister of Kazakhstan and CTBTO executive secretary on the occasion of the International Day against Nuclear Tests. Finally, the chapter also includes the operative text of the First Committee resolution on the CTBT, notable for the US shift from voting against it in the 75th session to endorsing it in the 76th session.
  • Section M – Nuclear-Weapons-Free Zone Treaties
    This chapter shows the status of the treaties establishing the various Nuclear-Weapon Free-Zones (NWFZs). The Fourth Conference of Nuclear-Weapon-Free Zones and Mongolia, initially scheduled for 24 April 2020, was postponed to 2021 (to be decided by 75th Session of the General Assembly), due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
  • Chapter N – The International Atomic Energy Agency: Statutes, Resolutions and Decisions
    This chapter contains an update on some of the key resolutions and decisions adopted in the 65th Session of the IAEA General Conference, including those on nuclear security, technical cooperation, strengthening the effectiveness and improving the efficiency of Agency safeguards, implementation of NPT safeguards in the DPRK, and the application of IAEA safeguards in the Middle East.
  • Chapter O – Safeguards Agreements with the International Atomic Energy Agency
    This chapter provides an update on the status of the Comprehensive Safeguards Agreement and the Additional Protocol. Since the last edition of the Briefing Book, Benin, Eretria and Ethiopia have had their Additional Protocol enter into force.
  • Chapter P – Conference on Disarmament
    This chapter covers the Conference on Disarmament (CD), which continues to be deadlocked without reaching a viable programme of work. The progress made through setting up subsidiary bodies in 2018 has, unfortunately, been rolled back in 2019. The chapter provides a snapshot of CD dynamics in 2019 through to 2021. It includes excerpts of CD’s 2019 report. It also includes the draft decision submitted by the UK that tried to build on the 2018 structure to set up four subsidiary bodies and appoint two ‘special coordinators’. While it received support from many delegations, ultimately the proposal could not reach consensus, and thus was not adopted by the conference. The section also includes an interesting Dutch working paper presented to the CD in 2019 under the title ‘Back to basics – the Programme of Work’, which proposes that the CD should return to working on the basis of the programme of work as intended in the Rules of Procedure, as used in the first decade-and-a-half from 1979 onwards. This proposal entails the de-linking of the CD’s programme of work from the establishment of its subsidiary bodies. The chapter also includes the last iteration (three were submitted in total) of the package proposal by the six presidents of the 2020 session of the CD. These proposals were not adopted. The section also includes a proposal by Australian delegation to render the language of the Rules of Procedure gender-neutral. The chapter ends with an excerpt from the CD’s 2021 final report.
  • Chapter Q – Security Assurances
    This chapter contains the texts of two Security Council resolutions on the issue, as well as the texts of some unilateral security assurances provided by the nuclear weapon states. Due to their renewed significance, a subsection within the chapter covers key documents on security assurances to three of the former Soviet republics: Belarus, Ukraine and Kazakhstan.
  • Chapter R – Export Controls
    This chapter includes documents related to the Zangger Committee and the Nuclear Suppliers Group. The statements issued at the last plenary meetings of the Nuclear Suppliers Group, held in Latvia and Kazakhstan, have been added to the section. No plenary meetings have been held since, due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
  • Chapter S – Nuclear Security
    This chapter includes updates on the status of the Convention on the Physical Protection of Nuclear Material, as well as on the status of its amendment, which took effect in 2016. The chapter also includes the communiqué from the last Nuclear Security Summit in 2016, as well as the Ministerial Declaration of the International Conference on Nuclear Security (ICONS), organised at the IAEA in Vienna in 2020.
  • Chapter T – NPT Anniversary
    This is a new chapter for this edition, and collects documents related to the fiftieth anniversary of the NPT, including documents marking the occasions of it being opened for signature (in 2018) and its entry into force (in 2020). This includes a 2018 joint statement by the foreign ministers of the three treaty depositories: Russia, the UK and the US. It also includes a series of national and joint statements and communiqués made in 2020 to mark the entry into force of the treaty.
  • Chapter U – New Multilateral Initatives
    This is another new chapter. It contains documents related to some of the new multilateral initiatives on nuclear policy that are of relevance to the NPT. The first section of this chapter includes documents that give a background on the origins and development of what started as the ‘Stepping Stones Initiative’, and is now called the ‘Stockholm Initiative’. These include the NPT working paper presented by Sweden to the 2019 PrepCom, as well as a number of joint ministerial statements/press statements made following meetings of the Initiative in Stockholm (2019), Berlin (2020), Amman (2021) and Madrid (2021). The second section of the chapter includes documents related to the US-led CEND initiative, including the 2019 NPT PrepCom working paper (which also includes a summary of earlier 2017 and 2018 working papers on the topic) that charts the evolution of the thinking behind the initiative. It also includes the press statements produced after its first two meetings, and the concept notes for each of the substantive subgroups established under the initiative.

The third section includes documents related to nuclear disarmament verification. The UN Group of Governmental Experts on disarmament verification released their report in 2019. The section includes excerpts from this final report, particularly a section on ‘possible areas of convergence’ that suggests a set of nuclear disarmament verification ‘principles’, and the conclusion and the recommendations of the report. The section also includes the programme of work of Phase III of the International Partnership for Nuclear Disarmament Verification (IPNDV). The last section of this chapter includes the 2019 Kyoto Appeal produced by the Group of Eminent Persons for Substantive Advancement of Nuclear Disarmament organized by Japan, which includes recommendations to the 2020 Review Conference. The section also includes the conclusion and recommendations of the report by the High-level Fissile Material Cut-off Treaty Expert Preparatory Group. The Group met in 2017 and 2018, and its report was presented to the CD in January 2019. It also includes a statement by ninety civil society organisations outlining priorities for the review of the treaty. Finally, the section includes the joint ministerial statement by five European states on the occasion of the conference ‘2020. Capturing Technology. Rethinking Arms Control’ to promote new and effective approaches to arms control that can contribute to international security and stability in the twenty-first century.

For more information, contact Mr. Jean du Preez at [email protected]


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