In 2010, the Non Proliferation Treaty’s (NPT) Review Conference established three key principles for nuclear disarmament to happen: the process, when it happens, must be transparent, verifiable, and irreversible. Substantial work on the first two has been done since, but irreversibility remains underdeveloped.
Responding to a growing call for this to be addressed, Wilton Park organised a conference, co-funded by the Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office (FCDO) and the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, on Irreversible Nuclear Disarmament (IND) in March 2022.
This successful conference, Irreversibility in Nuclear Disarmament, was the basis for a side event at the August 2022 NPT Review Conference, convened by UK and Norway. The draft Final Document of the Review stated that “States parties recognise that further work is required to ensure the irreversibility of nuclear disarmament and, as a first step, are encouraged to build an understanding of the application of irreversibility measures in attaining and maintaining a world free of nuclear weapons and to exchange information on the application of the principle of irreversibility in relation to the implementation of their Treaty obligations”.
Wilton Park is convening this follow-up conference, again in partnership with and behalf of the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the FCDO, to further develop detailed thinking on the technical, legal, and political parameters and criteria of irreversibility. We will take up the challenge set out at the Review Conference to build shared understandings among NPT States Parties and advance the prospects for nuclear disarmament.
Project Manager: Andrea Fallon