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Nuclear non proliferation treaty, CTBT

Non- Proliferation treaty prevents the misuse of nuclear weapons and technology related to it. CTBT bans nuclear explosions and tests of nuclear weapons.

The Treaty on non-nuclear proliferation is related to stopping the acceleration of the nuclear arms race and its technology. Other goals of the Treaty include promoting cooperation in the peaceful use of nuclear energy and achieving complete nuclear disarmament. It has been seen that the use of nuclear weapons in the past has caused major destruction; that’s why NPT was brought into action. 


What Is the Non-Proliferation Treaty?

The Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) is a multilateral treaty aimed at limiting the spread of nuclear weapons that includes three components: 


  •  non-proliferation,
  •   disarmament
  • Peacefull use of nuclear energy. 


These elements include a “grand bargain” between the five nuclear-weapon nations and the non-nuclear-weapon nations.


The Treaty does not affect a state party’s right to develop, generate, and use nuclear energy for humanitarian purposes, as long as such activities follow Articles I and II. All state parties agree to facilitate and have the right to participate in exchanging nuclear energy-related equipment, materials, and scientific and technological information for peaceful purposes.


The Treaty was signed in 1968 and entered force in 1970. Currently, this Treaty has 190 member states. 


Repercussions Of The NPT:


  • States that do not have nuclear weapons will not obtain them.


  • Nuclear-weapons states will seek disarmament.


  • Under safeguards, all states have access to nuclear technology for peaceful purposes.

Important provisions include:


The Treaty describes nuclear weapon states (NWS) as those that had previously produced and blew up a nuclear explosive device. So, all other nations are assessed as non-nuclear-weapon states (NNWS).


  • China, France, Russia, the United Kingdom, and the United States are the five nuclear-weapon states.
  • The Treaty has no bearing on state parties’ rights to develop, produce, and use nuclear energy for peaceful purposes.


States’ Role:


  • Nuclear weapon states are not to exchange nuclear weapons to any recipient, and they are not to assist, inspire, or facilitate any Non Nuclear Weapon States to falsify or otherwise attain them.


  • Non-nuclear weapon states are not to accept nuclear weapons from any transferor nor manufacture or acquire them.


  • These States must accept IAEA inspection on all nuclear equipment on their territory or under their control.

India’s Position


India is one of only 5 nations that either did not sign the NPT or signed but later retreated, joining Pakistan, Israel, North Korea, and South Sudan on the list.


India has always regarded the NPT as unfair and has declined to sign it.

India has objected to international non-proliferation treaties because they were selectively applicable powers and legalised the dominance of the five nuclear-weapon states.


What Is CTBT?


The comprehensive nuclear test ban treaty is a treaty banning all the nuclear explosions by everyone conducted worldwide. The Treaty was signed at the Geneva Conference on Disarmament and approved by the United Nations General Assembly. 


It became available for signature on 24 September 1996. Since then, the Treaty has come close to being universal. The Treaty was signed by 182 countries, the most recent being Trinidad and Tobago on 8 October 2009, which also signed the Agreement on 26 May 2010. The Treaty has been ratified by 154 countries, the most recent being Ghana on 14 June 2011. 


Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Organisation


The Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty Organisation, or CTBTO, was formed in Vienna to carry out the Treaty. It works temporarily until the Treaty enters into force. 


The CTBT calls for a global tracking system to ensure that the test ban is followed. CTBTO is already capable of detecting even minor underground nuclear detonations worldwide, thanks to its International Monitoring System. 


This monitoring includes over 300 monitoring stations (including 16 laboratories) for recording seismic, infrared, and hydroacoustic variables, as well as radionuclides. 


This system includes five German monitoring stations: two seismological and two infrared stations run by the Federal Institute of Geosciences and Natural Resources and a radionuclide station run by the Federal Office for Radiation Protection (BfS).


CTBT’s fundamental obligations are as follows:


  • Each State Party agrees not to conduct any nuclear weapon test explosions or other nuclear explosions and restrict and inhibit such nuclear explosions from occurring in any location under its jurisdiction or control.


  • Moreover, each State Party agrees to refrain from causing, encouraging, or otherwise partaking in carrying out any nuclear weapon test explosion or other nuclear explosions.


Why is the CTBT so significant?


The CTBT is the final impediment to the development of nuclear weapons. It stifles the emergence of new nuclear weapons and the advancement of present nuclear weapon designs. When the Treaty comes into effect, it establishes a legally binding prohibition on nuclear testing. The Treaty also contributes to preventing human suffering and environmental damage caused by nuclear testing.


Why hasn’t the Treaty come into force yet?


The Treaty’s entry into force is contingent on 44 specific States signing and ratifying the Treaty. These countries had nuclear weapons when the Treaty was tried to negotiate and signed. As of August 2011, the Treaty had been ratified by 35 of these countries. China, the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Egypt, India, Indonesia, Iran, Israel, Pakistan, and the United States are the only countries yet to do so. The Treaty has yet to be signed by India, North Korea, and Pakistan. Annex 2 of the Treaty includes a list of all 44 states.



The CTBT is a treaty that requires countries to prohibit nuclear explosions and nuclear weapon tests. In contrast, the NPT prohibits the development of nuclear weapons but allows for the development of nuclear energy for trials or peaceful purposes.


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