Show simple item record Aboul Enein, Sameh en
dc.creator Aboul Enein, Sameh 2010 2012-03-26T12:33:44Z 2012-03-26T16:00:08Z 2012-03-26T16:00:08Z
dc.description The 2010 Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty (NPT) Review Conference in New York in May was widely anticipated as a watershed event for international efforts to achieve nuclear disarmament and to prevent the spread of nuclear weapons. After a month of intensive negotiations, the NPT’s 189 states-parties agreed on a final document that puts forward 64 follow-on actions including, notably, formal talks in 2012 on eliminating nuclear weapons in the Middle East, an issue that had been stagnating since the 1995 NPT Review and Extension Conference. Given the 10 years of stalemate that followed the 2000 review conference, including the 2005 meeting, which failed to produce agreement on any substantive issue, this is both an unprecedented success and a glimmer of hope for the nuclear nonproliferation and disarmament regime. Egypt, speaking on behalf of the Nonaligned Movement (NAM), a group of 118 developing nations and the largest bloc of treaty members, called the timing of the conference a “historical juncture,” citing “stronger political will…aimed at the total elimination of nuclear weapons.”[1] The positive outcome stems in good part from the unique constructive exchange that developed between the governments and diplomats before and during the conference. In their closing statements, many delegations credited the success of the conference to an improved atmosphere among member states, created by the active promotion of disarmament and nonproliferation in the lead-up to the conference. U.S. President Barack Obama’s April 5, 2009, speech in Prague calling for steps toward a world free of nuclear weapons and the April 8, 2010, signing of a U.S.-Russian nuclear arms reduction agreement were two oft-cited examples. In fact, however, a broader range of focused and effective diplomatic efforts and developments took place ahead of the conference, including: • the positive atmosphere achieved at the May 2009 NPT Preparatory Committee; • the 15th NAM summit held at Sharm el Sheikh, chaired by Egypt in July 2009, where leaders reaffirmed their commitment to seek a world free of nuclear weapons; • the “G8 Foreign Ministers’ Statement on Nuclear Non-Proliferation, Disarmament and Peaceful Uses of Energy: A Contribution to the 2010 NPT Review Conference,” which the Group of Eight issued after its meeting in Canadain March 2010; • the U.S. “Nuclear Posture Review Report,” released in April 2010, which marked a substantial achievement by reducing the role of nuclear weapons in U.S. national security policy; and • the well-timed nuclear security summit in Washington, also in April 2010, with its high-level attendance and powerful message that all states must curb proliferation. These events created the necessary positive momentum for the review conference. When the NPT parties convened in New York, it was clear that most of them came determined to reinvigorate the treaty and the wider nuclear nonproliferation regime. The constructive nature of their statements and their willingness to seek common ground reflected this determination, as did the ability of the five nuclear-weapon states to reach agreement on a joint statement early in the conference. The strong leadership exhibited by the president of the conference and chairs of the Main Committees and subsidiary bodies, along with their wise use of committee work to push the agenda forward, helped to channel this goodwill and overcome obstacles posed by parties keen to protect their status or resist criticism. However, a great deal more was required to achieve success. The parties had to negotiate difficult understandings; the most notable example is the language in the final document on steps toward establishing a zone free of nuclear weapons and other weapons of mass destruction (WMD) in the Middle East. In that case, discussed in detail below, the common ground reached produced an opportunity to make real progress on an issue that could have considerable bearing on the strength of the nonproliferation regime in the next decade. en
dc.description.sponsorship Dr. Sameh Aboul-Enein is deputy ambassador of Egypt to the United Kingdom and a visiting lecturer on disarmament at London Diplomatic Academy. He previously was Egypt’s alternate representative to the Conference on Disarmament and the UN Office at Geneva and was an expert delegate at the 2005 and 2010 Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty Review Conferences. He is an alumnus of the School of Oriental and African Studies, University ofLondon; this article forms part of his postdoctoral research. He is contributing these views solely in his academic and personal capacity. en
dc.format.medium journals (periodicals) en
dc.language.iso en en
dc.publisher Arms Control Association en
dc.subject Nuclear proliferation en
dc.subject Nuclear disarmament en
dc.subject Nuclear weapons en
dc.subject Middle East en
dc.subject.classification Article in conference proceedings en
dc.title NPT 2010: the beginning of a new constructive cycle en
dc.type Text en
dc.contributor.sponsor American University in Cairo. Dept. of Public Policy and Administration en
dc.subject.discipline Global Affairs en
dc.rights.access This item is available en

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