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US President Ronald Reagan and Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev signing the arms control agreement banning the use of intermediate-range nuclear missiles, the Intermediate Nuclear Forces Reduction Treaty, Washington DC, 8th December 1987.

Nuclear-free zones are an important nonproliferation tool.

Containing Nuclear Weapons

January 2011, Number 02.01

“When the treaty arrangements of the central Asian Nuclear-Weapon-Free Zone came into effect in March 2009, U.N. Secretary-General Ban Kimoon welcomed the new agreement as a significant step in global efforts to control nuclear weapons. In acceding to the treaty, the countries of the region — Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan — pledged to not research, develop, manufacture, stockpile, acquire, possess, or maintain control over nuclear weapons or other nuclear explosive devices. The signatory countries also pledged to refrain from receiving or extending any service to others with respect to nuclear weapon technologies.1 The U.N. secretary general applauded the agreement for reinforcing other nuclear-free zone agreements in augmenting and buttressing the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT).2 The secretary-general noted that the Central Asian Nuclear-Weapon-Free Zone agreement was exceptional in several respects. It was the first regional treaty of its kind in the Northern Hemisphere. It was also the first nuclear zone agreement whose signatories explicitly included the pledge to comply with the comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty...”

Excerpt from Gregory Gleason, “Containing Nuclear Weapons,” per Concordiam: Journal of European Security Defense Issues 2, No. 1, 2011: 28-33.

This article reflects the views of the author and are not necessarily the official policy of the United States, Germany, or any other governments.