Setting the Deadline for Nuclear Weapon Destruction under the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons

Moritz Kütt, Zia Mian

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations

Abstract

The Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons requires nuclear-armed states that join the treaty while still possessing “nuclear weapons or other nuclear explosive devices” to “destroy them as soon as possible but not later than a deadline to be determined by the first meeting of States Parties.” This article examines technical issues that can inform this deadline decision. It outlines the processes and issues involved in the dismantlement and destruction of a nuclear weapon relevant to the purposes of meeting this treaty obligation. It uses publicly available information on the size and evolution of nuclear weapon stockpiles and declared and estimated rates of warhead dismantlement to assess the time it may take to dismantle and destroy current weapon stockpiles, including weapons already scheduled for dismantlement. It focuses on the United States and Russia which possess the largest arsenals, but includes discussions of other weapon states as well. The findings suggest that a TPNW deadline of 10 years for nuclear weapon destruction, with a possible 10 year extension.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)410-430
Number of pages21
JournalJournal for Peace and Nuclear Disarmament
Volume2
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - 2019

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Political Science and International Relations

Keywords

  • disarmament
  • Nuclear weapons
  • prohibition treaty
  • warhead dismantlement
  • Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons

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