2010 NPT Review Conference: Summary and Evaluation

May 28, 2010

From May 3 to 28, the 2010 Review Conference of the Parties to the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT) was held at the United Nations Headquarters in New York and the Final Document including the "Action Plan" was adopted by the Conference. The key achievements at this conference include: (1) the inclusion of a direct reference to achieving a world without nuclear weapons, (2) reconfirmation of the "unequivocal undertaking" on nuclear disarmament, (3) a request to nuclear-weapon states to report on their agreed nuclear disarmament undertakings to the Preparatory Committee in 2014, and (4) agreement on realistic steps on the implementation of the 1995 Resolution on the Middle East (e.g. endorsement for convening a conference in 2012).

State Secretary for Foreign Affairs Tetsuro Fukuyama participated in the general debate as the head of delegation of Japan, and on May 4 made a general statement that emphasized concrete nuclear disarmament measures proposed in the joint working paper between Japan and Australia, promotion of the universalization of the Additional Protocol, resolution of nuclear issues of North Korea and Iran, and the importance of international cooperation for the peaceful uses of nuclear energy. Japan submitted four working papers respectively on practical nuclear disarmament and non-proliferation measures (joint proposal between Japan and Australia), strengthening of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) safeguards, technical cooperation activities of the IAEA, and disarmament and non-proliferation education. Japan's efforts received support and appreciation from many countries, allowing these working papers to provide a foundation for the meetings' discussions.

In addition, at the final stage of the conference under the initiative of Minister for Foreign Affairs Katsuya Okada, together with the foreign ministers of Australia, Austria, Germany, the Republic of Korea, and the Minister for Disarmament and Arms Control of New Zealand, Japan released the Minister's Urgent Call for Unity of the State Parties for achieving agreement at the conference.

Japan evaluates the consensus on the final document as follows:

  1. a) Nuclear-weapon states and non-nuclear-weapon states, as well as developed and developing countries, have yet to overcome their disparate positions. However, as all State Parties shared a strong sense of crisis that this conference could not be allowed to end with the same result as 2005 and succeeded in making compromises in order to achieve agreement. There was great significance in saving the NPT regime, which was amidst crisis.
  2. b) Reaching agreement on the "Action Plan" for each of three pillars of the NPT (nuclear disarmament, nuclear non-proliferation, and peaceful uses of nuclear energy) was a great achievement that surpassed the final document of 2000.
  3. c) The content of the four working papers submitted by Japan was widely reflected in the final document, and they made an important contribution to reaching consensus.
  4. d) The steady implementation of the Action Plan by each State Party based on multilateralism should contribute to strengthening of the international non-proliferation regime based on the NPT.

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