The NPT at 50 - Advancing Nuclear Disarmament, Securing Our Future

As we approach the 50th anniversary of the entry into force of the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT) and the 2020 Review Conference

We, Ministers of Argentina, Canada, Finland, Germany, Indonesia, Japan, Jordan, Kazakhstan, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, the Republic of Korea, Spain, Sweden and Switzerland,

Reaffirm our unequivocal support of the NPT and its three mutually reinforcing pillars: nuclear disarmament, non-proliferation and peaceful uses of nuclear energy. We underline that past NPT commitments remain valid and form the basis for making further progress in fully implementing the treaty and achieving a world free of nuclear weapons.

We are united in our resolve to strengthen the NPT against the background of disturbing trends – the unravelling of the arms-control fabric that has served and must continue to serve global security well, increasingly tense relations between nations and risks arising from new and emerging weapon technologies.

Today, we discussed these trends and our message is: Commitments must be implemented. We must advance nuclear disarmament, in accordance with Article VI of the NPT, and ensure that, in the interest of humanity, nuclear weapons will never be used again.
Now is the time to take action to reduce nuclear risks. We call on Nuclear-Weapon States to maximize transparency on their nuclear arsenals and show nuclear restraint at the highest political level. We encourage Nuclear-Weapons States to discuss and take practical measures to reduce the role of nuclear weapons in their security and defence policies. All States must refrain from entering a new arms race.

More far-reaching steps can be taken. We are convinced that such steps would put us back on the road to nuclear disarmament. We encourage the United States and Russia to extend New START and engage in talks on its possible expansion, thus contributing to strategic stability. We underline the importance of contributions that other Nuclear-Weapon States can make to lay the ground for next-generation arms-control arrangements. We call on all Nuclear-Weapon States to reduce or further reduce their nuclear arsenals and to show leadership in putting a definite end to nuclear testing; in proceeding with negotiations on a treaty prohibiting fissile material production for nuclear weapons; and in supporting efforts to develop multilateral nuclear disarmament verification capacities.

We, Ministers of the Stockholm initiative, are firmly committed to facilitating such efforts and we support all sincere endeavours to rebuild confidence, improve the environment for and make real progress on nuclear disarmament. We value the impetus given to the P5 dialogue and we encourage Nuclear-Weapon States to make full use of it to yield concrete results before and at the NPT Review Conference. We feel encouraged by the first conference held on the establishment of a Middle East zone free of nuclear weapons and other weapons of mass destruction.

We are resolved to stay engaged on regional proliferation challenges. One of our firm objectives remains the denuclearization of the DPRK in a complete, verifiable and irreversible manner, in full compliance with all relevant United Nations Security Council resolutions. We underscore the importance of the preservation and full implementation of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPoA) on the Iranian nuclear programme, which was endorsed by the United Nations Security Council.

We are committed to promoting nuclear disarmament and non-proliferation education and empowering the young generation to shape our future in the field of nuclear disarmament. We pay respect to communities affected by the use and the testing of nuclear weapons. We are resolved to ensure full and effective participation of women and further integrate gender perspectives in nuclear disarmament. We are equally resolved to further cooperation across the broad spectrum of nuclear opportunities and challenges – including peaceful nuclear uses as well as addressing nuclear proliferation risks.

Today, we endorsed a set of stepping stones for advancing nuclear disarmament – meaningful and achievable measures reinforcing the NPT and its implementation. The 50th anniversary of the NPT is the moment to show political leadership, honour the commitments and achievements made under the treaty and lay the ground for its future. We are fully committed to that goal and will participate at high level in the 2020 Review Conference. We invite the NPT community to join us in our commitment and subscribe to this declaration.