An International Partnership for Nuclear Disarmament Verification

Fact Sheet
Bureau of Arms Control, Verification and Compliance
Washington, DC
December 4, 2014

Seeking the peace and security of a world free of nuclear weapons requires the international community to overcome significant technical challenges. As the President said in Prague in 2009, it will take patience and persistence.

In order to overcome these challenges, a common understanding of the technical issues associated with irreversible and verifiable disarmament is necessary, and in the interest of all states.

For this reason, the United States proposes an International Partnership for Nuclear Disarmament Verification that will bring together Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty (NPT) Nuclear Weapons States (NWS) with NPT Non-nuclear Weapons States (NNWS) under a cooperative framework to further understanding of the complex challenges involved in the verification of nuclear disarmament, and to work to surmount those challenges.

The United States believes such engagement will strengthen the existing work towards the goals of the NPT, while furthering the role of NNWS in the challenging work of verification of nuclear disarmament.

Nuclear Disarmament Verification and Technical Obstacles

Future steps in nuclear disarmament are expected to pose significantly more complex and intrusive verification challenges than past steps. Success in addressing these future verification and monitoring challenges will be dependent, in part, on the development and application of new technologies or concepts. All countries have an interest in the success of these efforts. This need not be an area of engagement confined solely to the NWS. A larger, more diverse group of states with technical expertise in nuclear verification or the related sciences will contribute to the discussion and provide a broader intellectual basis for determining solutions.

The Partnership

The International Partnership for Nuclear Disarmament Verification will assess and, potentially, develop approaches to address monitoring and verification challenges across the nuclear weapons lifecycle – including material production and control, warhead production, deployment, storage, dismantlement, and disposition. The Partnership will build on lessons learned from efforts such as the U.S./U.K. Technical Cooperation Program and the U.K./Norway Initiative.

To take the International Partnership forward, the U.S. government will work with the Nuclear Threat Initiative (NTI) through an official public-private partnership. Drawing from its recently concluded project, Innovating Verification, NTI will bring its expertise and resources to bear to help guide the process of standing up the International Partnership and assist in the development and implementation of a program of work.