The Chemical Weapons Convention verification regime: a model for a new NPT?
Blackburn, Douglas L.
Wirtz, James J.
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In January 1993, the Chemical Weapons Convention (CWC) was signed, completing the first step towards eliminating all chemical weapons. This treaty is the most comprehensive multilateral arms control treaty ever signed. The teeth of the CWC is a modern verification regime that includes traditional scheduled inspections as well as an innovative challenge inspection system: a party to the treaty may initiate a challenge inspection of another party if it believes there is a treaty violation. The CWC has been called a model for future arms control treaties. The Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT) has been in force for 25 years and has its fifth and final review conference in 1995. While the NPT has been both lauded and criticized over its lifetime, most authorities agree that it needs revision to meet the demands of the next century. One of the areas of the treaty requiring extensive review is the NPT verification process. This thesis examines the verification procedures delineated in the CWC and discusses the possibility of creating a similar verification regime for the NPT. It addresses the reasons why the CWC inspection might work for the NPT. It also addresses security questions that must be considered by a technologically advanced state, like the United States, before considering such a verification regime for nuclear weapons and nuclear technology.
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