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Fact Sheets & Briefs

Implementation of the Joint Plan of Action At A Glance

Press Contact: Kelsey Davenport, Nonproliferation Analyst, (202) 463-8270 x102

Updated: April 2014

On November 24, 2013, Iran and the P5+1 (China, France, Germany, Russia, the United Kingdom and the United States) reached a deal on Iran’s nuclear program. The agreement, or Joint Plan of Action, requires Iran and the P5+1 countries to take specific steps as part of a six-month, first-phase deal, and it outlines the broad parameters for negotiating a comprehensive solution.

After three rounds of technical talks to discuss the details of implementing the first-phase of the deal, the sides agreed to begin implementation on January 20, 2014. The first-phase will last until July 20, 2014, unless the parties agree to an extension.

The following factsheet tracks the progress made by each side on the specific tasks spelled out in the Joint Plan of Action. The factsheets on implementation of the deal released by the White House and the European Union provide further detail and clarity on these steps. The first-phase deal also requires that both parties refrain from certain actions. These are assessed separately.

The full text of the Joint Plan of Action is available here. The White House factsheet on implementation is available here and the European Union factsheet is available here.


Iranian Actions                                 
By January 20, halt production of near-20% enriched uranium hexaflouride gas (UF6) and commit to only enrich up to 5%.


According to the January 20 IAEA report, Iran had halted enrichment to 20% UF6.

By January 20, disable the configuration of the centrifuge cascades Iran has been using to produce 20% enriched UF6.


According to the January 20 IAEA report, Iran had ceased operating its interconnected centrifuges enriching to 20% UF6. The February 20 IAEA report said that Iran is now using the four cascades at Fordow to enrich uranium to 5%.

On January 20, continue conversion of half of its stockpile of near-20% uranium hexafluoride gas (UF6) into uranium oxide powder as working stock for fabricating fuel for the Tehran Research Reactor.


In Progress

According to the February 20 IAEA report, Iran is in the process of converting half of its stockpile of 20% enriched UF6 gas to uranium oxide powder. An additional 49 kg were converted since the November IAEA report.

On January 20, begin dilution of half of its stockpile of 20% UF6 to no more than 5% enriched UF6 and complete dilution by April 20.

In Progress

According to remarks delievered to the IAEA Board of Governors on March 3, Iran completed dilution of half of its required dilution of 20% enriched uranium to 3.5%.

Continue only its safeguarded research and development practices, including its current enrichment reserach practices, which were not designated for accumulation of the enriched uranium.


In the February 20 IAEA report, the agency verified that Iran was continuing its safeguarded research and development practices at Natanz and was not using the research to accumulate uranium as it tested advanced models.

By April 20, provide the IAEA with:
  • plans for nuclear facilities

In Progress

Iran submited details on site selection for 16 nuclear power plants to the IAEA, its initial plans for 10 future enrichment sites, and a light water reactor.

  • descriptions of buildings located on nuclear sites
Not Yet Completed
  • the scale of operations for each location
Not Yet Completed
  • information on uranium mines and mills

In Progress

According to the February 20 IAEA report, the agency has received some infomation about Iran's mining and milling activities, and more will be forthcoming.

  • information on source material
Not Yet Completed
Submit an updated Design Information Questionaire (DIQ) for the reactor at Arak (IR-40).


Iran submitted at updated DIQ on the reactor to the IAEA on February 12, according to the agency's Feb. 20 report.

Take steps to conclude a safeguards approach with the IAEA for the Arak reactor.

In Progress

The IAEA's February 20 report notes that Iran agreed to take steps to work with the agency to conclude the safeguards agreement.

Allow daily IAEA inspector access at Fordow and Nantanz, including scheduled and unannounced inspections and access to surveillance information on a daily basis.


As of the February 20 IAEA report, the IAEA was able to install surveillance measures at Natanz and Fordow to facilitate daily monitoring and came to an agreement regarding the facilitation of daily access.

(Prior to the Joint Plan of Action, the IAEA had acessed Fordow on a weekly basis, and Natanz on a biweekly basis.)

Allow the IAEA to conduct monthly inspections of the heavy water reactor at Arak and associated facilities.

In Progress

The IAEA was able to make its first monthly visit and access the heavy water reactor on Feb. 12, according to the agency's Feb. 20 IAEA report.

(Prior inspections were conducted at the reactor once every three months, and other facilities at the site were not included.)

Provide information to allow the IAEA inspectors managed access to:
  • centrifuge assembly workshops


The IAEA was able to visit the facility between February 3-7.

  • centrifuge rotor production


The IAEA was able to visit the facility between February 3-7.
  • workshops and storage facilities


The IAEA was able to visit the facility between February 3-7.
  • uranium mines and mills

In Progress

In a January 20 letter to the IAEA, Iran provided information about its uranium mines and mills, and the IAEA was able to access the Gchine mine on January 29.
Provide figures that will allow the IAEA to verify that centrifuge production will be dedicated to the replacement of damaged machines. Not Yet Completed
Cap the size of the 5% enriched UF6 stockpile.

In Progress

Iran is constructing a plant to convert 5% enriched UF6 to uranium dioxide, a powder suitable for power plant fuel, which will enable it to maintain a cap on its stockpile of UF6, which is not to exceed the amount Iran had an the beginning of implementation of the deal. As of the Feb. 20 IAEA report, Iran had not yet completed the plant, nor provided a timeframe for its operaitons.

Iran Will Refrain From the Following Actions Status
Refrain from installing a reconversion line to reconvert uranium oxide powder to 20% UF6.


The January 20 IAEA report said that Iran does not have a reconversion line in place.
Refrain from reproccessing or constructing a facility capable of reprocessing materials.


In a January 18 letter to the IAEA, Iran said it will not engage in reprocessing or construct a reprocessing facility over the six months of the deal. The January 20 IAEA report confirmed that no reprocessing is taking place at the Tehran Reserach Reactor or MIX facility.

Refrain from making any further advances of its activities at the Natanz Fuel Enrichment Plant.

(This includes not installing new centrifuges and not feeding UF6 into the roughly half the centrifuges at Natanz that are installed but not yet enriching uranium.)


The IAEA verified in the February 20 report that Iran has not made any further advances and no new centrifuges are enriching uranium.

Refrain from making any further advances of its activities at Fordow.

(This includes not installing new centrifuges, not feeding UF6 into the three quarters at Fordow that  are installed but not yet enriching uranium, and not interconnecting the cascades.)


The IAEA verified that Iran has not made any further advances and no new centrifuges are enriching uranium.
Replacing existing centrifuges only with centrifuges of the same type.


As of the February 20 IAEA report, the agency did not report any violation of this restriction, and survelliance has been set up to monitor any changes.

Refrain from commissioning the heavy water reactor at Arak.


The February 20 IAEA report said that Iran had not conducted any activities to further the Arak reactor.

Refrain from transfering fuel or heavy water to the Arak reactor.


The February 20 IAEA report said that Iran had not conducted any activities to further the Arak reactor.

Refrain from testing additional fuel or producing more fuel.


The February 20 IAEA report said that Iran had not manufactured or tested any reactor fuel, and the number of fuel rods produced remains at 11.

Refrain from installing any additional reactor components at the Arak site.


The February 20 IAEA report said that Iran had not conducted any activities to further advance the Arak reactor.
Limit centrifuge production to those needed to replace damaged machines. Not Yet Verified
Refrain from constructing any new locations for enrichment.


In a January 18 letter to the IAEA Iran said it would not pursue any new uranium enrichment sites during the six months of the agreement.


P5+1 Actions   
Pause efforts to reduce Iran’s crude oil sales, allowing Iran’s current customers to purchase their current average amounts of crude oil, including the EU prohibition on providing insurance for vessels carrying Iranian oil.                         

In Progress

In a January 20 press release, the EU Council of Foreign Ministers announced the suspension of sanctions preventing the insurance of vessels. However, not enough time has pased to determine if Iran's current oil customers are importing at their current average amounts.
Enable the repatriation of $4.2 billion of Iranian revenue held abroad on the following schedule:
  • Feb. 1:        $550 million


Iran received its first installment as scheduled on February 1. These funds were released from Japan.

  • March 1:     $450 million (half of the dilution of the 20% stockpile of UF6 complete)


IAEA Director General Amano confirmed that half of the dilution was completed on time in his remarks to the IAEA Board of Governors on March 3.

  • March 7:    $550 million
  • April 10:    $550 million
  • April 15:    $450 million (dilution of the entire stockpile of 20% UF6 complete)
Not Yet Completed
  • May 14:     $550 million
Not Yet Completed
  • June 17:     $550 million
Not Yet Completed
  • July 20:       $550 million.
Not Yet Completed
Suspend US sanctions on Iran’s petrochemical exports and associated services.*


In a January 20 statement, the White House announced that the United States would begin suspending sanctions.

Suspend US sanctions on Iran's import and export of gold and precious metals as well as sanctions on associated services.*


In a January 20 statement, White House announced that the United States would begin suspending sanctions.

Suspend U.S. sanctions on Iran imports of goods and services for its automotive manufacturing sector.


In a January 20 statement, White House announced that the United States would begin suspending sanctions.
Suspend EU sanctions on Iran’s petrochemical exports and associated services.*


In a January 20 press release, the EU Council of Foreign Ministers announced the suspension of sanctions.

Suspend EU sanctions on Iran's import and export of gold and precious metals as well as associated services.*


In a January 20 press release, the EU Council of Foreign Ministers announced the suspension of sanctions.
License the supply of spare parts and services for safety of flight for Iranian civil aviation and associated services.*


In a January 20 statement, White House Press announced that the United States would begin suspending sanctions. On April 4, Boeing confirmed that it received a license from the Treasury Department for exporting spare aircraft parts.
License safety related inspections and repairs in Iran for Iranian civila aviation sector as well as associated services.*


In a January 20 statement, White House Press secretary said that the United States would begin suspending sanctions.

Establish a financial channel to facilitate humanitarian trade for Iran’s domestic needs using Iranian oil revenue held abroad:

  • food and agricultural products
  • medicine, medical devices, and medical expenses incurred abroad
  • Iran's UN dues
  • tution payments to universities and colleges for iranian students studying abroad.
Not Yet Completed
Increase the EU authorization thresholds for transactions for non-sanctioned trade to an agreed amount.


In a January 20 press release, the EU Council of Foreign Ministers increased by tenfold the thresholds for authorizing finanical transfers.

P5+1 Will Refrain From the Following Actions Status
Not pass new nuclear-related UN Security Council sanctions.


There have been no new UN Security Council resolutions sanctioning Iran.

Not pass new EU nuclear-related sanctions.


On December 16, the EU Council of Foreign Ministers committed not to impose any further sanctions on Iran during the implementation of the Joint Plan of Action.

Not impose new U.S. nuclear-related sanctions.


A bill introduced in the U.S. Senate (S1881) would impose further sanctions on Iran, but it has not yet been voted on.

*“Sanctions on Associated Services” means any service, such as insurance, transportation, or financial, subject to the underlying U.S. or EU sanctions applicable, insofar as each service is related to the underlying sanction and required to facilitate the desired transactions. These services could involve any non-designated Iranian entities.

**While the funds have been released, there are reported difficulties in transfering portions of the funds to Iranian banks. It is unclear what portion of the funds remain to be transfered.

-Research assistance provided by Ashley Luer

Nuclear Security Summit at a Glance

Press Contact: Kelsey Davenport, Nonproliferation Analyst, (202) 463-8270 x102

Updated: April 2014

The Nuclear Security Summit

The goal of the summit process is to address the threat of nuclear terrorism by enhancing international cooperation to prevent the illicit acquisition of nuclear material by non-state actors such as terrorist groups and smugglers. The initiative began with an April 2009 call by U.S. President Barack Obama to hold a global summit on nuclear security in 2010 as part of an effort to "secure all vulnerable nuclear material around the world within four years.”

The global stockpile of highly enriched uranium (HEU) and separated plutonium is estimated at approximately 2,000 tons. While the vast majority of that material is located in a handful of countries, namely the United States and Russia, the summit process recognizes the threat of nuclear terrorism as a serious global issue, requiring transnational cooperation. There have been 16 confirmed cases of unauthorized possession of HEU or plutonium documented by the IAEA’s Illicit Trafficking Database since 1993, primarily in the former Soviet Union.

The summit process has featured two summits in Washington in 2010 and in Seoul in 2012, as well as several preparatory meetings between high-level national summit coordinators or sherpas.  A third summit is scheduled for 2014 hosted by the Netherlands and fourth summit will be held in the United States in 2016.

Washington 2010

The first Nuclear Security Summit was held in Washington, D.C., April 12-13, 2010. Forty-seven national delegations as well as the heads of the United Nations, the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) and the European Union attended. With 38 nations represented at the head of state or head of government level, the gathering was the largest of its kind hosted by a U.S. President since 1945.

In order to build upon these efforts, the summit concluded with a communiqué embracing the goal of securing the world’s vulnerable weapons-useable nuclear material within four years, and a work plan, which identified existing international agreements and resources that are available to countries as they work to secure or eliminate their civilian stockpiles of this material.


The Washington Communiqué

  • reaffirms the fundamental responsibility of states to maintain effective security of all nuclear materials and recognizes the need for cooperation in this area;
  • recognizes that highly enriched uranium (HEU) and separated plutonium require special precautions and encourages the conversion of reactors from HEU to low enriched uranium (LEU) fuel and minimization of use of HEU, where feasible;
  • supports the objectives of international nuclear security instruments, including the Convention on the Physical Protection of Nuclear Material, as amended, and the International Convention for the Suppression of Acts of Nuclear Terrorism, as essential elements of the global nuclear security architecture;
  • reaffirms the essential role of the International Atomic Energy Agency in the international nuclear security framework and will work to ensure that it continues to have the appropriate structure, resources and expertise to carry out its activities;
  • notes the positive contributions of mechanisms like the Global Initiative to Combat Nuclear Terrorism, to build capacity among law enforcement, industry, and technical personnel;
  • recognizes the continuing role of nuclear industry in nuclear security; and
  • supports the implementation of strong nuclear security practices that will not infringe upon the rights of States to develop and utilize nuclear energy for peaceful purposes and technology and will facilitate international cooperation in the field of nuclear security.

The Washington Work Plan

The Work Plan lays out the specific steps for realizing the goals of the Communiqué, including ratification and implementation of international treaties; support for Security Council Resolution 1540; conversion of civilian facilities from HEU to non-weapons-useable materials; research on new nuclear fuels; detection methods and forensic technologies; development of corporate and institutional cultures that prioritize nuclear security; education and training; and joint exercises among law enforcement and customs officials to enhance nuclear detection opportunities.


Washington Summit Country Commitments

In addition to signing the Communiqué and Work Plan, thirty countries announced 67 specific measures they planned to implement to support the goals of the summit. Prior to the Seoul summit, approximately 80 percent of these commitments were completed. Some of the key national commitments include:

Canada: Returning a large amount of spent highly enriched uranium fuel from their medical isotope production reactor to the United States; championing the extension of the G8 Global Partnership Against the Spread of Weapons and Materials of Mass Destruction; funding highly enriched uranium removals from Mexico and Vietnam; hosting and funding a World Institute of Nuclear Security best practices workshop in Ottawa; unveiling $100 million in new bilateral security cooperation with Russia

Chile: Removed all highly enriched uranium (18kgs) in March 2010

Kazakhstan: Converting a highly enriched uranium research reactor and eliminating remaining highly enriched uranium; cooperative work on BN-350 rector shutdown and fuel security; hosting a Global Initiative Activity in June; considering a International Nuclear Security Training Center.

Mexico: Converting a highly enriched uranium research reactor and eliminating remaining highly enriched uranium working through IAEA

Republic of Korea: Hosting 2012 Nuclear Security Summit; hosting a Global Initiative activity

Russia: Signing Plutonium Disposition protocol; ending plutonium production; contributing to International Atomic Energy Agency’s Nuclear Security Fund

Ukraine: Removing all highly enriched uranium by next Summit—half of it by year’s end

Vietnam: Converting a highly enriched uranium research reactor; joining the Global Initiative to Combat Nuclear Terrorism

Belgium, New Zealand, Norway, and the United Kingdom: Converting a highly enriched uranium research reactor; joining the Global Initiative to Combat Nuclear Terrorism

See a full list of national commitments

For a full accounting of the implementation of the 2010 national commitments, click here


Seoul 2012

In 2012, 53 heads of state and government along with representatives from the United Nations (UN), International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), European Union (EU) and INTERPOL gathered for the second nuclear security summit in Seoul, South Korea. Participating countries included the 47 countries that attended the 2010 Nuclear Security Summit plus Azerbaijan, Denmark, Gabon, Hungary, Lithuania, and Romania. The meeting, held on March 26-27, sought to reaffirm commitments made during the 2010 Nuclear Security Summit as well as outline future goals with respect to international agreements on nuclear security, radiological material security, and nuclear safety.

One of the primary objectives of the Seoul summit was to assess the progress that countries made toward the goal of securing all nuclear material world-wide since 2010. A report released in March 2012 by the Arms Control Association and the Partnership for Global Security found that approximately 80 percent of the national commitments pledged at the 2010 summit were completed in the run up to Seoul.

While the 2012 summit remained focused on nuclear security, the scope of the agenda was expanded to include discussions on the security of radiological sources and sensitive information and the interface between nuclear security and safety. The nuclear security-safety nexus was raised in particular following the March 2011 nuclear disaster in Fukushima, Japan. The summit produced a consensus communiqué that largely reiterated the goals and commitments from 2010.


Seoul Summit Outcomes

Seoul Communiqué

  • Reaffirms the fundamental responsibility of States to maintain effective security of all nuclear materials, including through the Convention on the Physical Protection of Nuclear Material (CPPNM) as amended, and the International Convention for the Suppression of Acts of Nuclear Terrorism (ICSANT); reiterates broader participation in the Global Initiative to Combat Nuclear Terrorism (GICNT) and the G8 Global Partnership Against the Spread of Weapons and Materials of Mass Destruction; continued support of UN Security Council Resolutions 1540 and 1977.
  • Reaffirms the essential role of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) in the international nuclear security framework including efforts to encourage States to consider establishing appropriate plans for the management of nuclear and radioactive materials; reaffirms increasing international cooperation to enhance States’ physical protection and accounting system for nuclear materials.
  • Encourages States to minimize the use of highly enriched uranium (HEU), where feasible, and to convert reactors from HEU to low enriched uranium (LEU) fuel; urges states to secure nuclear materials and radioactive materials through proper transportation, accounting, consolidation and storage practices; emphasizes the need to develop national capabilities to combat illicit nuclear trafficking through utilizing nuclear forensics, investing in the promotion of a strong nuclear security culture, and preventing non-state actors from obtaining sensitive information.
  • Encourages efforts to control radioactive material, including through IAEA measures such as the Code of Conduct on the Safety and Security of Radioactive Sources and the Guidance on the Import and Expert of Radioactive Sources.


Key National Commitments and Accomplishments

Argentina, Mexico, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, and Viet Nam: joined the Global Initiative to Combat Nuclear Terrorism.

Belgium, France, the Netherlands, and the United States: announced a joint project to convert the production of medical isotope molybdenum-99 from the use of HEU targets to LEU targets.

Czech Republic, Mexico, Viet Nam: converted their research reactors using HEU fuel to LEU fuel.

Israel: ratified the ICSANT; completed the repatriation of US-origin HEU spent fuel from its Soreq research reactor.

Ukraine: completed the removal of all HEU stockpiles.

Kazakhstan: secured spent nuclear fuel which contained enough HEU and plutonium to make several hundred nuclear weapons by moving them to a new long-term storage facility.

The Netherlands: will host the next nuclear security summit in 2014.

Pakistan: opening Nuclear Security Training Centers to act as a regional and international hub; deploying Special Nuclear Material Portals on key exit and entry points to counter the illicit trafficking of nuclear and radioactive materials.

Russia and the United States: HEU equivalent to around 3,000 nuclear weapons has been down- blended to LEU.


The Hague 2014

On March 24-25, 53 countries and representatives from four international organizations met for the third nuclear security summit in The Hague, Netherlands.The same 53 countries comprised the list of participants for the Seoul summit in 2012. The Netherlands laid out several goals for the summit, including; reducing stockpiles of nuclear materials, improving the security of nuclear and radioactive sources, increasing coordination with the nuclear industry, and improving international cooperation.

Similar to the past two summits, The Hague summit produced a consensus communique, new national commitments, and new multilateral commitments, known as "gift baskets" or joint statements.

Leaders also participated in a scenario-based policy exercise, during which they had the opportunity to think through responses to a radioactive device, and held a discussion on the future of the summit process. A fourth summit will be held in the United States in 2016, but it is unclear if that will be the final summit.

Ahead of the summit, nongovernmental organizations held an experts meeting in Amsterdam, as did the nuclear industry.

Timeline of Syrian Chemical Weapons Activity, 2012-2013

Press Contact: Daryl Kimball, Executive Director, 202-463-8270 ext. 107; Kelsey Davenport, Nonproliferation Analyst, 202-463-8270 ext. 102.

April 2014

In July 2012, Syria publicly acknowledged that it possesses chemical weapons. For a number of years preceding this announcement, the United States intelligence community assessed that Syria has a stockpile of chemical weapons, including mustard gas, blister agents, and nerve agents such as sarin and VX. Syria has the capability to deliver these agents using aerial bombs, ballistic missiles, and artillery rockets.

Below is a timeline of significant events related to Syria’s chemical weapons program from July 2012 to the present.


July 23, 2012: Syrian Foreign Ministry spokesman Jihad Makdissi confirmed for the first time that Syria has chemical weapons, stating that these weapons would never be used against the Syrian people, but only against “external aggression.”

August 20, 2012: President Barack Obama articulated his red-line regarding  the use of chemical weapons in Syria. Obama said his calculations on a military response would change significantly if the United States sees “a whole bunch of chemical weapons moving around or being utilized.”

August 23, 2012: An official in the State Department confirmed that “Syria has a stockpile composed of nerve agents and mustard gas” and that the U.S. government monitors Syria’s chemical weapons activities “very closely.”

December 23, 2012: The first allegation of  chemical weapons use was reported.  Seven people were allegedly killed in Homs by a “poisonous gas” used by the Assad regime. The coverage included the report of side effects such as nausea, relaxed muscles, blurred vision, and breathing difficulties.



January 15, 2013: A secret State Department cable from the U.S. consul general in Istanbul said there was compelling evidence that the Syrian military had used a chemical weapon known as Agent 15 in Homs on December 23, 2012.

January 16, 2013: Tommy Vietor, a spokesman for the National Security Council, said that the alleged incident of chemical weapons use in December was not consistent with information that the White House has about Syria’s chemical weapons program.

March 19, 2013: Alleged chemical weapons attacks were reported in Syria’s two main cities, the Khan al-Assel neighborhood of Aleppo and the Damascus suburb of al-Atebeh. About 25 people reportedly were killed and dozens more injured. The Assad regime claimed that Syrian opposition forces used chemical weapons in the fighting there.

March 20, 2013: The Syrian government requested the United Nations conduct an investigation of the March 19 attack on Aleppo, claiming that opposition forces used chemical weapons and killed 25 people.

President Obama said in a press conference with Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu that “the use of chemical weapons is a game changer,” in Syria.

March 21, 2013: UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon announced the United Nations will conduct an investigation on the possible use of chemical weapons in Syria, in conjunction with the World Health Organization (WHO) and the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW). Prior to the announcement, France and the United Kingdom sent letters to the Secretary-General, calling for investigations into three alleged incidents of the use of chemical weapons in Syria.

March 24, 2013: Syrian opposition activists reported that Syrian forces used chemical weapons from multiple rocket launchers at the town of Adra, northeast of Damascus, alleging two deaths and 23 injuries. Doctors described that the weapons used were phosphorus bombs that harm the nervous system and induce imbalance and loss of consciousness.

April 13, 2013: Syrian Observatory for Human Rights (SOHR) said that the Syrian army dropped two gas bombs on rebel-controlled Aleppo, killing two people and wounding 12. Opponents of the Syrian governmen accused the army of using chemical weapons.

April 17, 2013: UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon stated that Syria has impeded the UN investigation by failing to agree to the scope of the UN inquiry on chemical weapons use.

April 25, 2013: A letter sent to Sens. Carl Levin (D-Mich.) and John McCain (R-Ariz.) from the U.S. intelligence community said that the Assad regime may have used the nerve agent sarin “on a small scale” in Syria, but that the United States needs more evidence to provide “some degree of certainty” for any decision-making on further action. The letter also said that the Assad regime maintains custody of the chemical weapons in Syria.

April 26, 2013: President Obama remarked that the United States and the international community will work together to gain “strong evidence” of the Assad regime’s use of chemical weapons.

April 29, 2013: A helicopter dropped canisters allegedly containing chemical weapons on the town of Saraqeb. Eight people claimed symptoms such as nausea and breathing problems, and one of them later died.

June 4, 2013: French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius asserted that there was “no doubt” that the Syrian regime used sarin in multiple cases. Fabius said that the French government confirmed the use of sarin by testing specimen taken from Syria. A UN report also said that there are “reasonable grounds” to have confidence in Syria’s use of chemical weapons four times in March and April, although the report cannot specify the chemical agents or verify who used them.

June 13, 2013: The White House said that the U.S. intelligence community has “high confidence” that the Assad regime attacked opposition forces by using chemical weapons multiple times over the past year. In the statement, Ben Rhodes, deputy national security adviser for strategic communications, said that physiological samples from multiple sources show exposure to chemical weapons. The evidence of use is recognized as “credible” in the statement.

August 14, 2013: Assad agreed to allow the UN inspection team into Syria to investigate three possible uses of chemical weapons. The team’s mandate only allows it to establish whether or not chemical weapons were used, not who used them.

August 21, 2013: Syrian opposition activists claimed that a large-scale chemical weapons attack occurred at the suburbs of the Ghouta region, where Syrian forces had been attempting to expel rebel force. Reports said that thousands of victims of the attack have been counted in the Damascus suburbs, whose symptoms were typically body convulsion, forming from mouths, blurry vision and suffocation. Although the number of victims has not been clarified yet, it is estimated to exceed 1,000 people, many of whom were non-combatant.

The United Nations Security Council also held an emergency meeting regarding the attack. The meeting produced a statement demanding further clarity of the incident.

August 23, 2013: UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon’s spokesperson expressed the intention of the UN to conduct “a thorough, impartial and prompt investigation” on the alleged chemical weapons attack in Syria on August 21.

The OPCW Director General, Ambassador Ahmet Üzümcü, expressed grave concerns about the latest attack in Syria, and said that the OPCW experts were already in Syria with the UN investigation team.

August 25, 2013: The Syrian regime announced that it will let the UN inspection team investigating past incidents of chemical weapons use visit the Damascus sites in the following days.

August 26, 2013: The U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry said in his press briefing that all information the U.S. has, including reports of the number of victims, their symptoms, and the firsthand accounts from humanitarian organizations, strongly indicate that chemical weapons were used in Syria. He also said that Syria attempted to cover-up the incident in the days following the attack.

Syrian President Bashar Assad announced that his army did not use chemical weapons in the August 21 attack in Damascus. Assad recognized the allegation of his use of chemical weapons as “politically motivated," in his meeting with Russia's Izvestia daily.

A convoy transporting the UN investigation team of chemical weapons was attacked by snipers in Syria. No UN personnel were injured, but they were unable to visit all of the sites affected by the attack.

August 28, 2013: The United States has concluded that the Assad regime conducted chemical weapons attacks against civilians, President Obama said in “PBS NewsHour.” Obama said he had not yet made a decision whether to take a military action in Syria.

A second UN Security Council meeting was held.

August 29, 2013: The British Parliament voted against supporting military action in Syria. Before the vote, a report from the Joint Intelligence Committee released a report which stated that chemical weapons were used in the August 21 attach, and that it was "highly likely" that the Assad regime was responsible.

August 30, 2013: The White House released the U.S. Government Assessment on the use of chemical weapons in Syria on August 21. The report says that the intelligence community has "high confidence" that the Syrian government used chemical weapons against the opposition elements in Damascus. Secretary Kerry, in an address, also said that the regime used chemical weapons "multiple times" over the past year. Kerry said discussions on military action are underway.

August 31, 2013: President Obama made a statement saying that he would seek an authorization for the use of force from Congress for a limited military strike in Syria. Given the evidence of chemical weapons use by the Assad regime in the August 21 attack, Obama said he supported limited action in order to deter further chemical weapons use and uphold international norms.

September 2, 2013: France released its declassified intelligence assessment, which concluded that the Assad regime used Sarin gas in the August 21 attack, and in two earlier attacks in April. The report also said France assessed that the use of chemical weapons by the Assad regime violated the 1925 Geneva Protocol.

September 9, 2013: Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov announced a Russian proposition whereby Syria would agree to place its chemical weapons under international control and dismantle them and the United States would agree not to conduct a military strike on the country. Prior to the Russian announcement, Secretary of State Kerry, speaking in the United Kingdom, suggested that if the Assad regime turned over all of its chemical weapons to the international community "without delay", a miltiary strike could be averted. Speaking to media outlets after Secretary Kerry, President Barack Obama said that the United States would consider the plan.

September 10, 2013: Syrian Foreign Minister Walid al-Moallem said that the Assad regime welcomed discussion on Russia's plan to give up Syria's chemical weapons and join the Chemical Weapons Convention. President Barack Obama, French President Francois Hollande, and British Prime Minister David Cameron discussed how to implement the plan through the UN Security Council, with France beginning to draft a resolution based on the Russian proposal, but with stipulations that force be authorized if Assad fails to implement the provisions of the resolution.

President Obama, in an address to the nation, also requested that Congress postpone a vote on the use of force while the diplomatic path proposed by the Russians is pursued in the UN Security Council. However, he also reiterated his commitment to pursue miltiary action if a deal on securing Syria's chemical weapons is not reached.

September 12, 2013: The Assad regime sent a letter to the United Nations Secretary General which said that Assad signed a legislative decree providing the accession of Syria to the Chemical Weapons Convention. In the letter, Assad said Syria woud observe its CWC obligations immediately, as opposed to 30 days from the date of accession, as stipulated in the treaty.

In Geneva, Secretary of State John Kerry met with his Russian counterpart, Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, to begin discussions of the Russian proposal for securing the Assad regime's chemical weapons.

September 14, 2013: U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry and Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov reached an agreement on a detailed plan for the accounting, inspection, control, and elimination of Syria’s chemical weapons. The plan requires Syria to provide a full declaration of its stockpile “within a week” and provide the OPCW and the UN access to all chemical weapons sites in Syria. The plan calls for the OPCW inspectors  to complete their initial inspections by November and calls for the destruction of the stockpile of chemical weapons and chemical agents by the first half of 2014. The United States and Russia will now seek to secure approval of the plan by the OPCW executive council and then a UN Security Council resolution. The agreement outlined states that “in the event of non-compliance, including unauthorized transfer, or any use of chemical weapons by anyone in Syria, the UN Security Council should impose measures under Chapter VII of the UN Charter.

September 16, 2013: UN Secretary General Ban Ki Moon delivered a report on the UN investigation into the use of chemical weapons in Syria. The report concluded that chemical weapons were used against on August 21 on a "relatively large scale", and that the victims included civilians. The report cited evidence of the nerve agent sarin both in the environment and present in victims of the attack. It was outside of the report's mandate to assign blame for who used the chemical weapons.

September 20, 2013: In accordance with the terms of the agreement negotiated by the United States and Russia, Syria submitted a declaration of its stockpiles of chemical weapons to the OPCW.

September 27, 2013: The Executive Council of the OPCW adopted a timeline for destroying Syria's chemical weapons. Hours later, the United Nations Security Council unanimously voted to adopt a resolution that endorses the OPCW timeline for destroying Syria’s chemical weapons arsenal. The Security Council Resolution says that the body will impose measures under Chapter VII of its charter if Syria does not comply with the resolution, or uses or authorizes the transfer of any chemical agents.

October 1, 2013: A joint team of OPCW and UN officials arrived in Syria to begin destruction of the country's chemical weapons stockpiles and facilities.

October 6, 2013: Officials from the OPCW and UN team said that destruction of Syria's stockpiles of chemical weapons began. The officials confirmed that the Syrians will actually complete the destruction work, while the UN and OPCW team will monitor and verify the activities.

October 27, 2013: Syria submitted the details of its plans for "total and verified destruction" of its chemical weapons stockpile and production facilities to the OPCW. This declaration follows an initial declaration submitted on Sept. 20.

October 31, 2013: The OPCW confirmed that Syria destroyed, or rendered inoperable, all of its declared facilities for mixing and producing chemical weapons. The OPCW was able to inspect 21 of the 23 sites where these facilities were housed. The remaining two sites could not be visited due to security concerns, but inspectors said that the equiptment was moved out of these sites and destroyed.

November 15, 2013: The OPCW Executive Council approved a plan for the elimination of Syria's stockpile of chemical weapons. The plan call for transporting the weapons outside of Syria and destruction of the chemical agents in a country that has yet to be identified. The "most critical" chemicals are to be transported out of Syria by December 31, 2013 and the remainder by February 5, 2014. The plan calls for the destruction no later than June 30, 2014, and the destruction of certain priority chemicals by March 15, 2014.

The Executive Council also announced that the OPCW was able to verify that 60 percent of Syrian declared, unfilled, munitions for chemical weapons delivery had been destroyed. Syria committed to destroying all of its unfilled munitions by January 31, 2014.

November 30, 2013: The OPCW announced that Syria's chemical weapons will be destroyed on a U.S. ship using hydrolysis. Hydrolysis is a process that breaks down chemical agents using hot water and other compounds to neutralize the agents.

December 12, 2013: The UN team led by Ake Sellstrom investigating incidents of chemical weapons use in Syria issued its final report to UN Secreatary-General Ban Ki Moon. The report found that chemical weapons were likely used in five of the seven attacks investigated. The nerve agent sarin was likely used in four of the attacks, one of which was the large scale attack on a Damascus suburb in August.

December 31, 2013: Syria missed the deadline for sending all of its chemical weapons out of the country. This deadline was set by a UN Security Council Resolution approved in September.


January 7, 2014: Syria delivered the first load of chemical weapons to its port city Latakia. The chemical weapons were then loaded on a Danish ship that sailed out into international waters. China and Russia are providing protection for the ship, which will eventually transer the cargo to the US ship, the MV Cape Ray, to be neutralized using hydrolysis.

January 9, 2014: The German government announced its willingness to assist in the disposal of the chemical waste byproduct that will be created from the hydrolysis process.

January 16, 2014: Italian Transport Minister Maurizio Lupi said that Gioa Tauro, a port in southern Italy, will be used to transfer Syrian chemical weapons to the US ship, the Cape Ray, that will neutralize the chemicals using hydrolysis.

January 27, 2014: A second shipment of Syrian chemical weapons was loaded onto Dannish and Norwegian ships at the Syrian port of Lattakia. The U.S. ship that will receive the chemical weapons and then neutralize them using hydrolysis, the Cape Ray, left port. The chemicals will be transfered to the Cape Ray at the Italian port Gioa Tauro.

February 6, 2014: Sigrid Kaag, head of the UN/OPCW mission for destruction of Syria's chemical weapons, addressed the UN Security Council a day after Syria missed a second deadline for handing over its critical chemicals and said that she did not believe that the Assad regime was deliberately stalling the removal process. However, she urged Syria to speed up the shipments in order to meet the destruction deadline of June 30.

February 10, 2014: A third shipment of Syrian chemical weapons was loaded on a Norwegian cargo ship. In totaly, the Assad regime 11 percent of Syrian's chemical weapons have been shipped out of Syria.

February 14, 2014: The OPCW announced that two companies, one in Finland (Ekokem OY AB) and one in Texas (Veolia), were awarded contracts to dispose of the effluent created during the destruction of Syria's chemical weapons.

February 21, 2014: The OPCW executive committeed met to consider the Assad regime's new proposal for shipping out its chemical weapons. After failing to meet a Feb. 5 deadline to remove all of its chemical weapons and precursor chemicals out of the country, the regime proposed a 100 day extension. The OPCW executive committee, however, said that it an be accomplished more quickly. The 100 day extension also will not allow the the Cape Ray enough time to destroy the chemical weapons by the June 30 UN Security Council deadline.

February 25, 2014: The Assad regime delivered a shipment of mustard gas to the Syrian port of Latakia to be loaded onto ships.

March 4, 2014: The Assad regime submitted a revised proposal to remove its chemical weapons from Syria by the end of April 2014. Two additional shipments of chemical weapons also reached the port of Latakia and were loaded onto ships. In total, more than 35% of the country's chemical weapons have been removed.

March 7, 2014: The Executive Council concluded its 75th Session and noted in its report the “increasing pace” of removal of Syria’s chemical stockpile and requested the Syria continue “systematic, predictable and substantial movements” to complete the shipments.

Another shipment of priority 1 chemicals was reached the port of Latakia, bringing the total amount of chemical agents removed from Syria to 29 percent of the total stockpile.

March 19, 2014: The OPCW said that two additional shipments of Priority 1 and Priority 2 chemicals were delivered to the port of Latakia and loaded onto cargo vessels during the past week. Syria has now shipped out more than 45 percent of its stockpile.

April 4, 2014: The 12th shipment of Syrian chemical weapons reached the port of Latakia, according to the OPCW.

April 14, 2014: The Syrian government delivered its 13th consignment of chemicals to Latakia, which was removed today from the port on cargo ships. As of this delivery, the OPCW said that the Assad regime has shipped out 65 percent of its total stockpile of chemical weapons, including 57 percent of the Priority 1 chemicals.


The U.S. Government Assessment, released on August 30, included this map of Damascus and the areas impacted by the August 21 chemical weapons attack.

alternate text
Click image to enlarge.


-Researched by Yuta Kawashima

Ukraine, Nuclear Weapons, and Security Assurances At a Glance

Press Contact: Tom Collina, Research Director, (202) 463-8270 x104

(Research by Ashley Luer)

March 2014

At the time of Ukraine’s independence from the Soviet Union in 1991, Ukraine held the third largest nuclear arsenal in the world, including an estimated 1,800 strategic warheads, 176 long-range ballistic missiles, and 42 strategic bombers. By 1996, Ukraine had returned all of its nuclear warheads to Russia in exchange for economic aid and security assurances, and Ukraine became a non-nuclear weapon state party to the 1968 nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty (NPT).[1] The last strategic nuclear delivery vehicle in Ukraine was eliminated in 2001 under the 1991 Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (START).[2] It took years of political maneuvering and diplomatic work, starting with the Lisbon Protocol in 1992, to remove the weapons and nuclear infrastructure from Ukraine.

1990 Declaration of Sovereignty

Partly in an effort to gain international recognition, Ukraine’s pre-independence movement supported efforts to join the NPT as a non-nuclear weapon state. With Ukraine’s July 16, 1990 Declaration of Sovereignty, Ukraine pledged “not to accept, produce, or acquire nuclear weapons.”[3] However, despite this public commitment, Ukrainian politicians were not entirely united by the idea.[4] Some felt that Russia was a still a threat and that they should keep the weapons as a deterrent.

1991 Minsk Agreement on Strategic Forces

With the dissolution of the Soviet Union, the Commonwealth of Independent States signed the Minsk Agreement on December 30, 1991, agreeing that the Russian government would be given charge of all nuclear armaments. However, as long as the weapons remained in Belarus, Ukraine, and Kazakhstan, the governments of those countries would have the right to veto their use. The target date for dismantling the weapons was set for the end of 1994.[3]

1992 Lisbon Protocol

Ukraine signed the Lisbon Protocol on May 23, 1992. The protocol sought to return the nuclear weapons in Belarus, Kazakhstan, and Ukraine to Russia. All states were to join START and the NPT. However, within Ukraine, there was little motion towards the ratification of START, joining the NPT, or overall denuclearization. The protocol required that Ukraine adhere to the NPT as quickly as possible, but it gave the country up to seven years to follow through.

By late 1992, the Ukrainian parliament was vocalizing more pro-nuclear views. Some believed that Ukraine was entitled to at least temporary nuclear weapon status. Perhaps optimistically, the U.S. government promised Ukraine $175 million in dismantlement assistance.[3] Instead, the Ukrainian government began implementing administrative management of the nuclear forces and claimed ownership of the warheads.

In late April 1993, 162 Ukrainian politicians signed a statement to add 13 preconditions for ratification START, frustrating the ratification process. The preconditions required security assurances from Russia and the U.S., foreign aid for dismantlement, and compensation for the nuclear material. Additionally, they stated that Ukraine would dismantle only 36% of its delivery vehicles and 42% of warheads, leaving the rest under Ukrainian control. Russia and the U.S. criticized these demands, but Ukraine did not budge. In May 1993, the U.S. said that if Ukraine were to ratify START, the U.S. would provide more financial assistance. This began subsequent discussions between Ukraine, Russia, and the U.S. over the future of Ukrainian denuclearization.

1993 Massandra Accords

Ukrainian and Russian officials reached a set of agreements, including protocols on nuclear weapons dismantlement, procedure, and terms of compensation. However, the two sides could not agree on the final document, and the summit ultimately failed. [4]

1994 Trilateral Statement

The Massandra Accords set the stage for the ultimately successful trilateral talks. As the U.S. mediated between Russia and Ukraine, the three countries signed the January 14, 1994 Trilateral Statement. Ukraine committed to full disarmament, including strategic weapons, in exchange for economic support and security assurances from the United States and Russia. Ukraine agreed to transfer its nuclear warheads to Russia and accepted U.S. assistance in dismantling missiles, bombers, and nuclear infrastructure.[2] Ukraine’s warheads would be dismantled in Russia, and Ukraine would receive compensation for the commercial value of the highly enriched uranium.[4] Ukraine ratified the START treaty in February 1994, repealing its earlier preconditions, but it would not accede to the NPT without further security assurances.

1994 Budapest Memorandum on Security Assurances

To solidify security commitments to Ukraine, the United States, Russia, and the United Kingdom signed the December 5, 1994 Budapest Memorandum on Security Assurances. A political agreement in accordance with the principles of the Helsinki Accords, the memorandum included security assurances against the threat or use of force against Ukraine’s territory or political independence. The countries promised to respect the sovereignty and existing borders of Ukraine. Parallel memorandums were signed for Belarus and Kazakhstan as well. In response, Ukraine officially acceded to the NPT as a non-nuclear weapon state on December 5, 1994. That move met the final condition for ratification of the START treaty, bringing the treaty into force for Ukraine

2009 Joint Declaration by Russia and the United States

Russia and the United States released a joint statement in 2009 confirming that the security assurances made in the 1994 Budapest Memorandum would still be valid after the START Treaty expired in 2009.[5]

2014 Russian Annexation of Crimea

Following months of political unrest and the abrupt departure of President Yanukovych of Ukraine, Russian troops entered the Crimean peninsula of Ukraine in March 2014. On March 18, over the protests of the acting government in Kiev, the UN Security Council, and Western governments, Russia declared the annexation of Crimea. The United States, the United Kingdom, and Ukraine called the action a blatant violation of the security assurances in the 1994 Budapest Memorandum. However, according to the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, “the security assurances were given to the legitimate government of Ukraine but not to the forces that came to power following the coup d'etat.”[6]


  • July 16, 1990: Ukraine’s Declaration of Sovereignty
  • July 31, 1991: The United States and the Soviet Union signed START.
  • Dec. 26, 1991: The Soviet Union officially dissolved, delaying entry into force of START.
  • Dec. 30, 1991: Minsk Agreement on Strategic Forces
    • The Commonwealth of Independent States agreed that strategic forces would be under the joint command of the former Soviet Union states.
  • May 23, 1992:  Lisbon Protocol
    • Signed by Russia, Belarus, Ukraine, Kazakhstan, and the United States
    • The protocol sought to return nuclear weapons in three formerly Soviet states to Russia.
    • All states were to be added to the START treaty and to join the NPT.
  • Jan. 14, 1994: The Trilateral Statement
    • Signed by Ukraine, Russia, and the United States
    • Ukraine committed to full disarmament, including strategic offensive weapons, in exchange for economic support and security assurances from US and Russia.
  • Sept. 4, 1993 Massandra Accords
    • Failed summit between Russian and Ukrainian governments
  • Dec. 5, 1994 Budapest Memorandum on Security Assurances
    • Signed by Russia, Ukraine, United States, and the United Kingdom
    • Included security assurances against the threat or use of force against Ukraine’s territory or political independence.
  • Dec. 5, 1994: Ukraine submitted its instrument of accession to the NPT as a non-nuclear weapon state.
    • The five START parties exchanged instruments of ratification for START, which entered into force.
  • June 1, 1996: Ukraine transferred its last nuclear warhead to Russia
  • October 30, 2001: Ukraine eliminated its last strategic nuclear weapon delivery vehicle.
  • Dec. 4, 2009: Joint Statement by Russia and the United States
    • The two countries confirmed that the security guarantees made in the 1994 Budapest Memorandum.
  • March 18, 2014: Russia annexed the Crimean peninsula


[1] “The Lisbon Protocol at a Glance,” Arms Control Association, March 2014,

[2] Pifer, Steven “The Trilateral Process: The United States, Ukraine, Russia, and Nuclear Weapons,” Brookings Institution, 2011.

[3] Potter, William C. “The Politics of Nuclear Renunciation: The Cases of Belarus, Kazakhstan, and Ukraine” The Henry L. Stimson Center, 1995.

[4] Garnett, Sherman W. “Ukraine’s Decision to Join the NPT,” Arms Control Today, Jan/Feb 1995.

[5] “Western Information Agency:  USA, Russia Confirm Guarantees of Security to Ukraine,” Kyiv Post, Dec. 14, 2009.

[6] Quote from Senior Russian official to ACA, March 14, 2014.


The Lisbon Protocol At a Glance

Press Contact: Tom Collina, Research Director; (202) 463-8270 x104

Updated: March 2014

A pervasive fear surrounding the collapse of the Soviet Union was the uncertain fate of its nuclear arsenal. In addition to Russia, the emerging states of Belarus, Kazakhstan, and Ukraine inherited a significant number of nuclear weapons, raising concerns that the Soviet Union would leave four nuclear weapon successor states instead of just one. Aside from increasing the number of governments with their finger on the proverbial nuclear button, the circumstances simultaneously raised concerns that those weapons might be more vulnerable to possible sale or theft. The Lisbon Protocol, concluded on May 23, 1992, sought to alleviate those fears by committing the three non-Russian former Soviet states to return their nuclear weapons to Russia. In spite of a series of political disputes that raised some concerns about implementation of the protocol, all Soviet nuclear weapons were eventually transferred to Russia by the end of 1996.

When the Soviet Union officially dissolved in December 1991, the newly-independent states of Belarus, Kazakhstan, and Ukraine inherited more than 3,000 strategic nuclear weapons (those capable of striking the continental United States), as well as at least 3,000 tactical or battlefield nuclear weapons. All dispersed Soviet tactical weapons were reportedly back on Russian soil by the end of 1992, but the strategic weapons posed a larger problem.

The United States and Russia reached a solution to this complex problem by engaging Belarus, Kazakhstan, and Ukraine in a series of talks that led to the Lisbon Protocol. That agreement made all five states party to the 1991 Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (START), which required Washington and Moscow to each cut their deployed strategic nuclear forces from approximately 10,000 warheads apiece to down below 6,000 warheads on no more than 1,600 ICBMs, submarine-launched ballistic missiles (SLBM), and long-range bombers. The protocol signaled the intentions of Belarus, Kazakhstan, and Ukraine to forswear nuclear arms and accede to the nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty (NPT) as non-nuclear-weapon states, a commitment that all three fulfilled and continue to abide by today.


Estimated Warheads in Belarus, Kazakhstan, and Ukraine in 1991



Strategic Warheads

Tactical Warheads










Sources: Robert S. Norris, “The Soviet Nuclear Archipelago,” Arms Control Today, January/February 1992, p. 24 and Joseph Cirincione, et al., Deadly Arsenals, Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, 2005, p. 366.


Basic Timeline and Provisions:

  • July 31, 1991: The United States and the Soviet Union sign START.
  • Dec. 31, 1991: The Soviet Union officially dissolves, delaying entry into force of START.
  • May 23, 1992: Russia, Belarus, Ukraine, Kazakhstan, and the United States sign the Lisbon Protocol.
    • Under the protocol, all five states become parties to START.
    • Belarus, Kazakhstan, and Ukraine promise to accede to the NPT as non-nuclear-weapon states “in the shortest time possible.”
  • July 2, 1992: Kazakhstan ratifies START.
  • Oct. 1, 1992: The U.S. Senate ratifies START.
  • Nov. 4, 1992: The Russian State Duma refuses to exchange START instruments of ratification until Belarus, Ukraine, and Kazakhstan accede to the NPT.
  • Feb. 4, 1993: Belarus ratifies START.
  • July 22, 1993: Belarus submits its instrument of accession to the NPT as a non-nuclear-weapon state.
  • January 14, 1994: The Trilateral Statement is signed by Presidents Clinton, Yeltsin, and Leonid Kravchuk of Ukraine, allowing Ukraine to observe the transfer of weapons from its territory to Russia and the dismantlement of certain systems. It also commits Russia to send some of the uranium extracted from the returned warheads back to Ukraine for fuel.
  • Feb. 14, 1994: Kazakhstan submits its instrument of accession to the NPT as a non-nuclear-weapon state.
  • Dec. 5, 1994: Ukraine submits its instrument of accession to the NPT as a non-nuclear weapon state.
    • The five START parties exchange instruments of ratification for START, which enters into force.
  • April 24, 1995: Kazakhstan transfers its last strategic weapon to Russia.
  • June 1996: Ukraine transfers its last strategic weapon to Russia.
  • November 1996: Belarus transfers its last strategic weapon to Russia, marking completion of Lisbon Protocol obligations.

Ratification and Implementation:


When the Soviet Union dissolved, the newly-established Republic of Belarus found itself in possession of roughly 800 total nuclear weapons deployed within its borders. Although Russia retained the warhead arming and launch codes, many worried that Belarus might attempt to take control of the weapons. Moreover, President Alexander Lukashenko twice threatened to retain some weapons if NATO deployed nuclear weapons of its own in Poland. However, when a constitutional crisis erupted in November 1996, Lukashenko was finally compelled to finalize the transfers.

Minsk signed the Lisbon Protocol on May 23, 1992, ratified it on Feb. 4, 1993, and deposited its instrument of accession to the NPT as a non-nuclear-weapon state on July 22, 1993. By November 1996 all nuclear warheads in Belarus had been transferred to Russia.


After gaining independence, Kazakhstan with extensive U.S. technical and financial assistance disposed of the strategic nuclear weapons that it inherited from the Soviet Union. Kazakhstan’s 1,410 strategic warheads were deployed on several different systems, including SS-18 ICBMs and cruise missiles carried by Bear-H bombers.

Kazakhstan’s parliament ratified START on July 2, 1992. All tactical nuclear weapons had been withdrawn to Russia by January 1992. The parliament approved accession to the NPT on Dec. 13, 1993, and deposited the state’s NPT instrument of ratification on Feb. 14, 1994. The last of the Kazakh-based strategic nuclear weapons were transferred to Russia by April 24, 1995.


When the Soviet Union dissolved, Ukraine became the third-largest nuclear weapons power in the world behind the United States and Russia. Ukraine’s 1,900 strategic warheads were distributed among ICBMs, strategic bombers, and air-launched cruise and air-to-surface missiles. Although President Leonid Kravchuk signed the Lisbon Protocol on May 23, 1992, Ukraine’s process of disarmament was filled with political obstacles. Many Ukrainian officials viewed Russia as a threat and argued that they should keep nuclear weapons in order to deter any possible encroachment from their eastern neighbor. Although the government never gained operational control over the weapons, it declared “administrative control” in June 1992, and, in 1993, claimed ownership of the warheads, citing the potential of the plutonium and highly enriched uranium they contained for creating peaceful energy.

A resolution passed by the Rada, the Ukrainian parliament, on Nov. 18, 1993, attached conditions to its ratification of START that Russia and the United States deemed unacceptable. Those stated that Ukraine would only dismantle 36% of its delivery vehicles and 42% of its warheads; all others would remain under Ukrainian custody. Moreover, the resolution made those reductions contingent upon assurances from Russia and the United States to never use nuclear weapons against Ukraine (referred to as “security assurances”), along with foreign aid to pay for dismantlement.

In response, the Clinton and Yeltsin administrations intensified negotiations with Kyiv, eventually producing the Trilateral Statement, which was signed on Jan. 14, 1994. This agreement placated Ukrainian concerns by allowing Ukraine to cooperate in the transfer of the weapons to Russia, which would take place over a maximum period of seven years. The agreement further called for the transferred warheads to be dismantled and the highly enriched uranium they contained to be downblended into low-enriched uranium. Some of that material would then be transferred back to Ukraine for use as nuclear reactor fuel. Meanwhile, the United States would give Ukraine economic and technical aid to cover its dismantlement costs. Finally, the United States and Russia responded to Ukraine’s security concerns by agreeing to provide security assurances upon its NPT accession.

In turn, the Rada ratified START, implicitly endorsing the Trilateral Statement. However, it did not submit its instrument of accession to the NPT until Dec. 5, 1994, when Russia, the United Kingdom, France, and the United States provided security assurances to Ukraine. That decision by the Rada met the final condition for Russia’s ratification of START, and subsequently brought that treaty into force.

Note: In 1991, the United States and the Soviet Union announced through the Presidential Nuclear Initiatives to substantially reduce their respective tactical nuclear weapons arsenals. For more, see “The Presidential Nuclear Initiatives (PNIs) on Tactical Nuclear Weapons At a Glance” at

The Status of the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty: Signatories and Ratifiers

Press Contact: Daryl Kimball, Executive Director, (202) 463-8270 x107

March 2014

Despite over 10 years of global efforts to promote the entry into force of the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty (CTBT), the treaty’s enactment appears a long way off.

President George H. W. Bush signed into law the unilateral declaration to forego full-scale nuclear weapons testing October 2, 1992. The United States signed the CTBT on September 24, 1996, the day it opened for signature, but the Senate dealt a severe blow to the near-term prospects for U.S. participation when it refused to provide its advice and consent October 13, 1999. President Obama, however, stated in February 2009 that he intends to pursue Senate ratification of the treaty "immediately and aggressively."

The CTBT will formally enter into force after 44 designated “nuclear-capable states” (as listed in Annex 2 of the treaty) have deposited their instruments of ratification with the UN secretary-general. To date, 183 states have signed and 162 have ratified the treaty. Yet of the 44 specified countries, India, Pakistan, and North Korea still have not signed, and only 36 have ratified the treaty.

The following chart identifies the treaty’s signatories and ratifiers. States whose ratification is required for the treaty to take effect are shaded and marked with an asterisk (*).

Total Signatories: 183
Total Ratifiers: 162

Annex 2 Ratifications (out of 44): 36

Afghanistan 9/24/03 9/24/03
Albania 9/27/96 4/23/03
Algeria* 10/15/96 7/11/03
Andorra 9/24/96 7/12/06
Angola 9/27/96
Antigua and Barbuda 4/16/97 1/11/06
Argentina* 9/24/96 12/4/98
Armenia 10/1/96 7/12/06
Australia* 9/24/96 7/9/98
Austria* 9/24/96 3/13/98
Azerbaijan 7/28/97 2/2/99
Bahamas 2/4/05 11/30/07
Bahrain 9/24/96 4/12/04
Bangladesh* 10/24/96 3/8/00
1/14/08 1/14/08
Belarus 9/24/96 9/13/00
Belgium* 9/24/96 6/29/99
Belize 11/14/01 3/26/04
Benin 9/27/96 3/6/01
Bolivia 9/24/96 10/4/99
Bosnia and Herzegovina 9/24/96 10/26/06
Botswana 9/16/02 10/28/02
Brazil* 9/24/96 7/24/98
Brunei Darussalem 1/22/97 1/10/13
Bulgaria* 9/24/96 9/29/99
Burkina Faso 9/27/96 4/17/02
Burundi 9/24/96 9/24/08
Cambodia 9/26/96 11/10/00
Cameroon 11/16/01 2/6/06
Canada* 9/24/96 12/18/98
Cape Verde 10/1/96 3/1/06
Central African Republic 12/19/01 5/26/10
Chad 10/8/96 2/8/13
Chile* 9/24/96 7/12/00
China* 9/24/96
Colombia* 9/24/96 1/29/08
Comoros 12/12/96
Congo 2/11/97
Cook Islands 12/5/97 9/6/05
Costa Rica 9/24/96 9/25/01
Côte d'Ivoire 9/25/96 3/11/03
Croatia 9/24/96 3/2/01
Cyprus 9/24/96 7/18/03
Czech Republic 11/12/96 9/11/97
Dem. Republic of Congo* 10/4/96 9/28/04
Denmark 9/24/96 12/21/98
Djibouti 10/21/96 7/15/05
Dominican Republic 10/3/96 9/4/07
Ecuador 9/24/96 11/12/01
Egypt* 10/14/96
El Salvador 9/24/96 9/11/98
Equatorial Guinea 10/9/96
Eritrea 11/11/03 11/11/03
Estonia 11/20/96 8/13/99
Ethiopia 9/25/96 8/8/06
Fiji 9/24/96 10/10/96
Finland* 9/24/96 1/15/99
France* 9/24/96 4/6/98
Gabon 10/7/96 9/20/00
Gambia 4/9/03
Georgia 9/24/96 9/27/02
Germany* 9/24/96 8/20/98
Ghana 10/3/96 06/14/11
Greece 9/24/96 4/21/99
Grenada 10/10/96 8/19/98
Guatemala 9/20/99 1/12/12
Guinea 10/3/96 09/20/11
Guinea-Bissau 4/11/97 09/30/13
Guyana 9/7/00 3/7/01
Haiti 9/24/96 12/1/05
Holy See 9/24/96 7/18/01
Honduras 9/25/96 10/30/03
Hungary* 9/25/96 7/13/99
Iceland 9/24/96




9/24/96 2/6/12
Iran* 9/24/96
Iraq 8/19/08 09/26/13
Ireland 9/24/96 7/15/99
Israel* 9/25/96
Italy* 9/24/96 2/1/99
Jamaica 11/11/96 11/13/01
Japan* 9/24/96 7/8/97
Jordan 9/26/96 8/25/98
Kazakhstan 9/30/96 5/14/02
Kenya 11/14/96 11/30/00
Kiribati 9/7/00 9/7/00
Kuwait 9/24/96 5/6/03
Kyrgyzstan 10/8/96 10/02/03
Laos 7/30/97 10/5/00
Latvia 9/24/96 11/20/01
Lebanon 9/16/05 11/21/08
Lesotho 9/30/96 9/14/99
Liberia 10/1/96 8/17/09
Libya 11/13/01 1/6/04
Liechtenstein 9/27/96 9/21/04
Lithuania 10/7/96 2/7/00
Luxembourg 9/24/96 5/26/99
Macedonia 10/29/98 3/14/00
Madagascar 10/9/96 9/15/05
Malawi 10/9/96 11/21/08
Malaysia 7/23/98 1/17/08
Maldives 10/1/97 9/7/00
Mali 2/18/97 8/4/99
Malta 9/24/96 7/23/01
Marshall Islands 9/24/96 10/28/09
Mauritania 9/24/96 4/30/03
Mexico* 9/24/96 10/5/99
Micronesia 9/24/96 7/25/97
Moldova 9/24/97 1/16/07
Monaco 10/1/96 12/18/98
Mongolia 10/1/96 8/8/97
Montenegro 10/23/06 10/23/06
Morocco 9/24/96 4/17/00
Mozambique 9/26/96 11/4/08
Myanmar 11/25/96
Namibia 9/24/96 6/29/01
Nauru 9/8/00 11/12/01
Nepal 10/8/96
Netherlands* 9/24/96 3/23/99
New Zealand 9/27/96 3/19/99
Nicaragua 9/24/96 12/5/00
Niger 10/3/96 9/9/02
Nigeria 9/8/00


Niue 4/9/12 3/5/14
North Korea*
Norway* 9/24/96 7/15/99
Oman 9/23/99 6/13/03
Palau 8/12/03 8/1/07
Panama 9/24/96 3/23/99
Papua New Guinea 9/25/96
Paraguay 9/25/96 10/4/01
Peru* 9/25/96 11/12/97
Philippines 9/24/96 2/23/01
Poland* 9/24/96 5/25/99
Portugal 9/24/96 6/26/00
Qatar 9/24/96 3/3/97
Romania* 9/24/96 10/5/99
Russia* 9/24/96 6/30/00
Rwanda 11/30/'2004 11/30/04
St. Kitts and Nevis 3/33/04 4/27/05
St. Lucia 10/4/96 4/5/01
St. Vincent and the Grenadines 7/2/09 9/23/09
Samoa 10/9/96 9/27/02
San Marino 10/7/96 3/12/02
Sao Tome and Principe 9/26/96
Senegal 9/26/96 6/9/99
Serbia and Montenegro 6/8/01 5/19/04
Seychelles 9/24/96 4/13/04
Sierra Leone 9/8/00 9/17/01
Singapore 1/14/99 11/10/01
Slovakia* 9/30/96 3/3/98
Slovenia 9/24/96 8/31/99
Solomon Islands 10/3/96
South Africa* 9/24/96 3/30/99
South Korea* 9/24/96 9/24/99
Spain* 9/24/96 7/31/98
Sri Lanka 10/24/96
Sudan 6/10/04 6/10/04
Suriname 1/14/97 2/7/06
Swaziland 9/24/96
Sweden* 9/24/96 12/2/98
Switzerland* 9/24/96 10/1/99
Tajikistan 10/7/96 6/10/98
Tarzania 9/30/04 9/30/04
Thailand 11/12/96
Timor-Leste 9/26/08


10/2/96 7/2/04
Trinidad and Tobago 10/8/09 5/26/10
Tunisia 10/16/96 9/23/04
Turkey* 9/24/96 2/16/00
Turkmenistan 9/24/96 2/20/98
Uganda 11/7/96 3/14/01
Ukraine* 9/27/96 2/23/01
United Arab Emirates 9/25/96 9/18/00
United Kingdom* 9/24/96 4/6/98
United States* 9/24/96
Uruguay 9/24/96 9/21/01
Uzbekistan 10/3/96 5/29/97
Vanuatu 9/24/96 9/16/05
Venezuela 10/3/96 5/13/02
Viet Nam* 9/24/96 3/10/06
Yemen 9/30/96
Zambia 12/3/96 2/23/06
Zimbabwe 10/13/99


Chronology of Libya's Disarmament and Relations with the United States

Press Contact: Kelsey Davenport, Research Analyst; (202) 463-8270 x102

Updated: February 2014

On December 19, 2003, long-time Libyan President Moammar Gaddafi stunned much of the world by renouncing Tripoli’s weapons of mass destruction (WMD) programs and welcoming international inspectors to verify that Tripoli would follow through on its commitment.

Following Gaddafi’s announcement, inspectors from the United States, United Kingdom, and international organizations worked to dismantle Libya’s chemical and nuclear weapons programs, as well as its longest-range ballistic missiles. Washington also took steps toward normalizing its bilateral relations with Tripoli, which had essentially been cut off in 1981.

Libya’s decision has since been characterized as a model for other states suspected of developing WMD in noncompliance with their international obligations to follow. Assistant Secretary of State for Arms Control Stephen Rademaker stated May 2, 2005 during the nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty (NPT) Review Conference that Libya’s choice “demonstrates that, in a world of strong nonproliferation norms, it is never too late to make the decision to become a fully compliant NPT state,” noting that Tripoli’s decision has been “amply rewarded.”

Tripoli’s disarmament was also a success story for the U.S. intelligence community, which uncovered and halted some of the assistance Libya was being provided by the nuclear smuggling network led by Pakistani nuclear official Abdul Qadeer Khan. At  that time, the U.S. intelligence community was being harshly criticized for its failures regarding Iraq’s suspected WMD programs.

The factors that induced Libya to give up its weapons programs are debatable. Many Bush administration officials have emphasized the U.S.-led 2003 invasion of Iraq, as well as the October 2003 interdiction of a ship containing nuclear-related components destined for Libya, as key factors in Tripoli’s decision. But outside experts argue that years of sanctions and diplomatic efforts were more important.

Libya erupted into civil war in February 2011, beginning as a clash between peaceful political protestors and the government.  The situation degenerated into armed conflict between loyalist Gaddafi forces and rebel militias and culminated with a toppled regime and an elected General National Congress in August 2012.  Disarmament efforts were halted in February 2011 due to the conflict but no chemical or biological weapons were used by either side. U.S. intelligence sources said that the stockpiles of these weapons remain secure. Libya today is again on the path to destroying its weapons of mass destruction capabiltiies and stockpiles.

The following chronology summarizes key events in the U.S.-Libyan relationship, as well as weapons inspection and dismantlement activities in Libya since its 2003 pledge.


Skip to: 1970s, 1980, 1981, 1982, 1986, 1988, 1989, 1992, 1993, 1995, 1996, 1999, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012.



May 26, 1975: Codifying a commitment to forswear nuclear weapons, Libya ratifies the NPT seven years after it was first signed by the regime of King Idris al-Sanusi.

December 2, 1979: A mob attacks and sets fire to the U.S. embassy in Tripoli. Embassy officials are subsequently withdrawn and the embassy shut down.

December 29, 1979: The U.S. government places Libya on a newly created list of state sponsors of terrorism. Countries on the list are subject to a variety of U.S. sanctions.

1978-1981: Libya purchases more than 2,000 tons of lightly processed uranium from Niger. The Soviet Union completes a 10 megawatt nuclear research reactor at Tajoura.


July 1980: Libya’s safeguards agreement with the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) enters into force. Such agreements allow the IAEA to inspect certain nuclear-related facilities within a country to verify that the government is not misusing civilian nuclear programs for illicit military purposes.

Libya subsequently pursues clandestine nuclear activities related to both uranium enrichment and plutonium separation. Both plutonium and highly enriched uranium can be used as fissile material in nuclear weapons.

May 6, 1981: The United States closes Libya’s embassy in Washington and expels Libyan diplomats.

August 19, 1981: U.S. aircraft shoot down two Libyan combat jets that fired on them over the Mediterranean Sea.

January 19, 1982: Libya ratifies the Biological Weapons Convention (BWC). The BWC prohibits states-parties from developing, producing, and stockpiling offensive biological agents.

January 7, 1986: President Ronald Reagan issues an executive order imposing additional economic sanctions against Libya in response to Tripoli’s continued support for international terrorism, including two December 1985 attacks at airports in Rome and Vienna. The order bans most Libyan imports and all U.S. exports to Libya, as well as commercial contracts and travel to the country. Libyan assets in the United States are also frozen. Reagan authorizes the sanctions under the authority of several U.S. laws, including the International Emergency Economic Powers Act (IEEPA).

April 15, 1986: U.S. forces launch aerial bombing strikes against Libya in response to Tripoli’s involvement in an April 5 terrorist attack that killed two American servicemen at a Berlin disco.

December 21, 1988: Pan Am Flight 103 en route from London to New York explodes over Lockerbie, Scotland, killing all 259 people on board and 11 bystanders on the ground. In November 1991, investigators in the United States and United Kingdom name two Libyan officials as prime suspects in the bombing.

September 19, 1989: The French airliner UTA Flight 772 bound for Paris explodes, killing all 171 people on board. Investigating authorities find evidence of terrorism and indict two Libyan suspects in 1991.


January 21, 1992: The UN Security Council adopts Resolution 731 demanding that Libya surrender the suspects in the Pam Am bombing, cooperate with the Pan Am and UTA investigations, and pay compensation to the victims’ families.

March 31, 1992: The Security Council adopts Resolution 748 imposing sanctions on Libya, including an arms embargo and air travel restrictions.


November 11, 1993: The Security Council adopts Resolution 883 which tightens sanctions on Libya. The resolution includes a limited freeze of Libyan assets as well as a ban on exports of oil equipment to Libya.


July 1995: According to the IAEA, Libya makes a “strategic decision to reinvigorate its nuclear activities, including gas centrifuge uranium enrichment.”

Gas centrifuges can enrich uranium for use in nuclear reactors as well as for fissile material in nuclear weapons.


April 1996: Libya joins the African Nuclear-Weapon-Free Zone by signing the Treaty of Pelindaba. The treaty prohibits member states from developing, acquiring, and possessing nuclear weapons, but has not yet entered into force.

August 5, 1996: The Iran-Libya Sanctions Act (ILSA) becomes law. The act authorizes the president to impose sanctions against foreign companies that invest more than $40 million a year in Libya’s oil industry.


April 5, 1999: Libya hands over two suspects--each reportedly linked to Libyan intelligence--to Dutch authorities for trial in the bombing of Pam Am Flight 103.

Immediately following the handover, as well as France’s acknowledgement that Tripoli had cooperated with French officials investigating the UTA bombing, the Security Council suspends sanctions against Libya originally imposed in 1992.

May 1999: Libyan officials offer to eliminate their chemical weapons programs during secret talks with the United States, according to Martin Indyk, then assistant secretary of state. In a March 10, 2004 Financial Times article, Indyk reveals that U.S. officials insisted Libya reach a settlement with the Pan Am victims’ families, as well as accept responsibility for the bombing, before Washington negotiate with Libya about its chemical weapons.

1999-2000: U.S. intelligence agencies begin to obtain new information that Libya is “reinvigorating its nuclear, missile, and biological [weapons] programs,” according to a March 31, 2005 report from the Commission on the Intelligence Capabilities of the United States Regarding Weapons of Mass Destruction. By 2000, “information was uncovered that revealed shipments of centrifuge technology from the [proliferation network run by former Pakistani nuclear scientist Abdul Qadeer Khan] were destined for Libya,” the report says.

Following the suspension of UN sanctions, Libya also begins increasing its efforts to obtain chemical weapons. According to a 2003 CIA Report, Tripoli reestablishes “contacts with sources of expertise, parts, and precursor chemicals abroad, primarily in Western Europe.”


January 31, 2001: Three judges hand down verdicts in the Pan Am trial. One man, Abdel Baset Ali Mohmed Al-Megrahi, is found guilty of 270 counts of murder. The other suspect, Lamen Khalifa Fhimah, is acquitted.

November 19, 2001: Speaking at the BWC Review Conference, Undersecretary of State for Arms Control and International Security John Bolton states that Libya may be violating the treaty by actively seeking to develop or deploy offensive biological weapons. This is the first time the United States has accused noncompliant states by name at a diplomatic conference.


May 6, 2002: Bolton indicates in a speech to the Heritage Foundation that Libya and Syria received dual-use technology that could be used for producing biological weapons through trade with Cuba. Dual-use goods are items having both civilian and military uses.

August 3, 2002: President George W. Bush signs the “ILSA Extension Act of 2001” which extends the provisions of the Iran-Libya Sanctions Act for an additional five years and lowers the $40 million investment threshold for the possible imposition of sanctions to $20 million.


February 12, 2003: CIA Director George Tenet, in written testimony to Congress, notes “Libya clearly intends to re-establish its offensive chemical weapons capability.”

Early March 2003: Libyan intelligence officials approach British intelligence officials and offer to enter negotiations regarding the elimination of Libya’s WMD programs. The subsequent negotiations, which include U.S. officials, are kept secret.

Former National Security Council official Flynt Leverett later writes in a January 23, 2004 New York Times article that Washington offers an “explicit quid pro quo” to Tripoli regarding its WMD programs. U.S. officials indicate that the United States will remove its sanctions on Libya if the latter verifiably dismantles these programs, according to Leverett.

The meeting occurs prior to the U.S.-led invasion of Iraq later that month.

April 5, 2003: Bolton says in an interview with Radio Sawa that the invasion of Iraq “sends a message” to Libya, as well as Iran and Syria, “that the cost of their pursuit of weapons of mass destruction is potentially quite high.”

September 12, 2003: In a 13-0 vote, the Security Council formally lifts sanctions imposed on Libya. The United States and France abstain. The Securty Council’s action comes in response to Libya’s August 15 agreement to compensate the victims of the Pan Am attack, as well as Tripoli’s formal acceptance of responsibility for that bombing.

Libya agreed September 11 to offer additional compensation to the families of the 1989 UTA bombing victims. Libya first agreed in 1999 to pay the families, but agreed to increase the amount after the Pan Am victims were promised more. A final agreement is reached in January 2004.

U.S. Ambassador James B. Cunningham explains that the United States will not lift sanctions because of “serious concerns about other aspects of Libyan behavior,” including Tripoli’s WMD programs. Cunningham states that “Libya’s continued nuclear infrastructure upgrades raise concerns.” He accuses Tripoli of “actively developing biological and chemical weapons.”

Testifying before the House International Relations Committee four days later, Bolton reiterates his previous threat stating that countries developing WMD “will pay a steep price for their efforts.”

October 4, 2003: German and Italian authorities interdict a ship en route to Libya containing centrifuge components manufactured in Malaysia. Bush later touts the interdiction as a key intelligence success during a February 11, 2004 speech at the National Defense University. Some U.S. officials subsequently assert that the interdiction played a major role in convincing Libya to come clean on its weapons programs.

December 19, 2003: Libya’s Foreign Ministry publicly renounces the country’s WMD programs. Tripoli promises to eliminate its chemical and nuclear weapons programs, adhere to its commitments under the NPT and BWC, as well as accede to the Chemical Weapons Convention (CWC). Libya also promises to limit the range and payloads of its missiles to conform to guidelines set by the Missile Technology Control Regime (MTCR). Additionally, Libya agrees to conclude an additional protocol to its IAEA safeguards agreement. The protocol expands the IAEA’s authority to check for clandestine nuclear activities. Libya invites inspectors to verify compliance with the agreements and assist in the dismantling of its weapons programs.

U.S. and British officials hail the announcement. Bush says that “far better” relations between Washington and Tripoli are possible if the latter fully implements its commitments and “demonstrates its seriousness.” Bush promises U.S. help to “build a more free and prosperous” Libya if the country achieves “internal reform.”

December 27, 2003: IAEA Director-General Mohamed ElBaradei visits Libya to begin the process of assessing and verifying Libya’s nuclear dismantlement activities.


January 4, 2004: The London Sunday Times publishes an interview with Gaddafi’s son, who reports that Libya obtained designs for a nuclear weapon from the Khan network.

January 6, 2004: Libya ratifies the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty, which prohibits the explosive testing of nuclear weapons. The treaty has not yet entered into force.

Tripoli also accedes to the CWC. Under the convention, Libya must completely destroy its chemical weapons stockpiles and production capacity by April 29, 2007. Upon joining the CWC, Libya declares the possession of its chemical weapons materials and capabilities as follows; 24.7 metric tonnes (MT) of sulfur mustard; 1,390 MT of precursor chemicals; 3,563 unloaded chemical weapons munitions (aerial bombs); and 3 former chemical weapons production facilities. The OPCW inspections verify these materials and capabilities.

January 18, 2004: U.S. and British officials arrive in Libya to begin elimination and removal of WMD designs and stockpiles. Assistant Secretary of State for Verification and Compliance Paula DeSutter later tells the Senate Foreign Relations Committee February 26 that the Libyan officials are “forthcoming about the myriad aspects” of Libya’s WMD programs.

January 24, 2004: Representative Tom Lantos (D-Calif.), the ranking minority member of the House International Relations Committee, becomes the first U.S. lawmaker to visit Libya in decades.

January 27, 2004: U.S. officials airlift about 55,000 pounds of documents and components from Libya’s nuclear and ballistic missile programs to the United States. The nuclear-related material includes uranium hexafluoride (the feedstock for centrifuges), two complete second-generation centrifuges from Pakistan, and additional centrifuge parts, equipment, and documentation.

On March 15, Secretary of Energy Spencer Abraham calls the airlift “only the tip of the iceberg,” representing just 5 percent of the total amount of material the United States will eventually recover from Libya.

February 4, 2004: Khan reveals that, for two decades, he secretly provided North Korea, Libya, and Iran with technical and material assistance for making nuclear weapons.

February 20, 2004: The IAEA releases a report detailing Libya’s noncompliance with its safeguards agreement and outlining Tripoli’s nascent nuclear program. Specifically, the report describes Libya’s gas centrifuge-based uranium-enrichment program, imports of nuclear material, and designs of facilities for uranium conversion. Libya’s IAEA safeguards agreement required Tripoli to report some of these activities, but the government failed to do so.

The report says that Libya ordered 10,000 advanced centrifuges and received two of them in 2000. Moreover, the report discloses that Libya secretly separated small amounts of plutonium from the spent fuel of the Tajuora Research Reactor during the 1980s.

Although the report states that Libya received nuclear weapons design documents from the Khan network, the IAEA cites no evidence that Libya ever undertook steps to build a nuclear weapon.

February 26, 2004: The United States lifts its Libya travel ban. U.S. citizens are allowed to make travel-related expenditures in Libya, and businesses may enter negotiations to re-acquire pre-sanctions holdings inside Libya. The United States also offers Libya the possibility of opening a diplomatic interests section in Washington.

DeSutter tells the Senate Foreign Relations Committee the same day that Libya’s decision to abandon its weapons programs should become “a model for other proliferators to mend their ways and help restore themselves to international legitimacy.”

February 27, 2004: The Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW), the international body charged with verifying CWC compliance, confirms that Libyan officials provided a “partial initial declaration of their chemical weapons stockpiles” and promised a complete declaration to the organization by March 5, 2004.
The OPCW begins oversight of chemical weapons destruction activities in Libya.

February 28, 2004: At the end of an African Union summit, Gaddafi calls upon other states to abandon their WMD programs. Nuclear weapons, he says, make states less secure.

March 4, 2004: The OPCW reports that “[o]ver 3,300 [empty] aerial bombs, specifically designed to disperse chemical warfare agent, have been individually inventoried, then irreversibly destroyed under stringent international verification.”

March 5, 2004: Libyan officials submit a complete declaration of the state’s chemical weapons stockpile and facilities. According to the OPCW, the declared stockpile includes approximately 23 metric tons of mustard gas and more than 1,300 metric tons of precursor chemicals, but no filled munitions.

March 8, 2004: The United States, with assistance from British and IAEA officials, arranges for 13 kilograms of highly enriched uranium, a fissile material, to be airlifted from Libya to Russia for disposal.

March 10, 2004: Libya signs an additional protocol to its IAEA safeguards agreement and reaffirms a December 29 commitment to behave as if the protocol had already entered into force.

DeSutter tells the House International Relations Committee that the United States has removed five 800 kilometer range Scud-C missiles from Libya, as well as additional missile and centrifuge components.

The IAEA Board of Governors adopts a resolution declaring that Libya’s past clandestine nuclear activities “constituted noncompliance” with its IAEA safeguards agreement. Nonetheless, the board welcomes the cooperation and openness of Libyan officials since December 2003 and recommends that ElBaradei report Libya’s noncompliance to the Security Council “for information purposes only.” The IAEA is required to report noncompliance with safeguards agreements to the Security Council, which can then take action against the offending state.

March 23, 2004: Assistant Secretary of State for Near Eastern Affairs William Burns meets with Libyan officials, including Gaddafi, in Tripoli. A State Department spokesperson calls the meetings “constructive” and reflective of the “step-by-step normalization” of relations between Libya and the United States. Burns is the most senior U.S. official to visit Libya since 1969.

April 22, 2004: In response to the March IAEA resolution, the Security Council issues a president statement “commending” Libya for its cooperation with the agency.

April 23, 2004: The White House terminates the application of ILSA with respect to Libya. Press Secretary Scott McClellan also announces that the Treasury Department has modified sanctions imposed under the authority of IEEPA. McClellan notes that “the resumption of most commercial activities” between Libya and the United States will now be permitted.

May 13, 2004: Libya announces it will end military trade with countries it deems “source[s] of concern for the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction.” U.S. officials explain that the Libyan announcement follows a private agreement for Libya to end all its military dealings with Syria, Iran, and North Korea. However, the Libyan foreign ministry later denies that the announcement is aimed at Syria.

May 26, 2004: Libya submits its initial declarations required by its additional protocol arrangement with the IAEA.

May 28, 2004: ElBaradei issues a report to the IAEA board detailing the agency’s progress in verifying Libya’s declarations regarding its nuclear program. According to the report, “Libyan authorities have provided prompt, unhindered access to all locations requested by the [a]gency and to all relevant equipment and material declared to be in Libya.”

Speaking June 14 to the board, ElBaradei says questions remain regarding the origin of nuclear material Libya imported during 2000 and 2001, as well as the source of enriched uranium particles found on Libya’s centrifuge equipment. The agency has contacted other governments to investigate entities involved in providing nuclear technology to Libya.

June 28, 2004: Announcing that Washington and Tripoli will resume direct diplomatic ties, Burns inaugurates a new U.S. Liaison Office in Libya.

September 20, 2004: The United States lifts most of its remaining sanctions on Libya. Bush terminates the national emergency declared in 1986 under IEEPA, as well as revokes related executive orders. This action ends the remaining sanctions under IEEPA and ends the need for Treasury Department licenses for trade with Libya.

The United States also permits direct air flights between the two countries, as well as unfreezes Libyan assets in the United States. Additionally, Bush waives prohibitions on extending certain U.S. export assistance programs to Libya and on the ability of U.S. taxpayers to claim credits for taxes paid to Libya.

Libya is still subject to some sanctions as it remains on the U.S. list of state sponsors of terrorism. These sanctions include prohibitions on arms exports and Department of Defense contracts. The United States also is required to oppose loans from international financial institutions to such countries and impose export controls on dual-use items.

Two days later, DeSutter tells the House International Relations Committee that verification of Libya’s disarmament tasks is “essentially complete,” adding that the United States, working with the United Kingdom, has completed verifying “with reasonable certainty that Libya has eliminated, or has set in place the elimination of” its weapons programs.

August 30, 2004: ElBaradei issues another report to the IAEA board stating that information Tripoli has given to the agency about its past nuclear activities “appear[s] to be consistent with the information available to and verified by” the IAEA.

According to the report, the IAEA continues to investigate several outstanding issues regarding Libya’s nuclear weapons program, particularly assistance Tripoli received from the Khan network. Cooperation from other countries is “essential” for determining the role of the network in supplying Libya, the report adds.

October 11, 2004: European Union foreign ministers lift a 20 year-old arms embargo on Libya, allowing EU countries to export arms and other military equipment to that country. Part of the EU rationale for lifting the embargo is to improve Libya’s capacity to patrol its maritime borders and prevent illegal immigration to the EU from North Africa, a particular concern of southern European states such as Italy.

European arms transfers are still governed by the EU’s Code of Conduct on Arms Exports and national export control laws.


March 25, 2005: In a letter to The Washington Post, White House Press Secretary Scott McClellan declares for the first time publicly the U.S. assessment that the uranium hexafluoride found in Libya originated in North Korea. According to McClellan, this material was transferred to Libya via the A.Q. Khan illicit trafficking network.

October 20, 2005: Libya signs an agreement with Russian nuclear fuel manufacturer TVEL to provide its Tajoura research reactor with low-enriched uranium (LEU) as part of an effort to convert the reactor from using HEU to LEU.


May 15, 2006: Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice announces the U.S. establishment of full diplomatic relations with Libya. As part of that move, President George W. Bush submits a report to Congress certifying that Tripoli had not engaged in acts of terrorism in the previous six months and had provided assurances that it would not support terrorism, thereby allowing Libya to be removed from the list of state sponsors of terrorism.

June 26, 2006: The United Kingdom and Libya sign a “Joint Letter of Peace and Security,” in which London pledges to seek UN Security Council action if another state attacks Libya with chemical or biological weapons and pledges to aid Libya in strengthening its defense capabilities.  Both states also announce that they will work jointly to combat the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction.

July 27, 2006: IAEA and U.S. National Nuclear Security Administration officials help remove the last remaining quantity of fresh HEU from Libya.  Three kilograms of Russian-origin HEU from the Tajoura research reactor in Libya are returned to Russia for disposal.

December 2006: The OPCW establishes Dec. 31, 2010 as the deadline for Libya to destroy its mustard gas sotckpiles and Dec. 31, 2011 as the deadline to destroy its remaining chemcial weapon precursors.


June 14, 2007: Libya annuls its contract on chemical weapons destruction with the United States due to dissatisfaction with its provisions on liability, financing, and facility ownership. Under its agreement with the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons, these chemicals must be eliminated by the end of 2010. Libya did not indicate how it intended to meet this commitment.

July 25, 2007: France and Libya sign a memorandum of understanding on nuclear energy cooperation.  The agreement outlines a plan for the eventual construction of a nuclear desalination plant.


January 3, 2008: Libyan Foreign Minister Abdel Rahman Shalgam pays an official visit to the United States and signs a Science and Technology Cooperation Agreement. This is the first official visit by a Libyan Foreign Minister to the United States since 1972.

August 14, 2008: The United States and Libya sign the U.S -Libya Claims Settlement Agreement, providing full compensation for victims of the 1988 Lockerbie bombing and the bombing of the Berlin disco. Under the terms of the agreement, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice certified to Congress that Libya paid $1.5 billion to cover terrorism related claims against Tripoli. The agreement also addressed Libyan claims arising from U.S. military actions in Tripoli and Benghazi in 1986 to the amount of $300 million.

September 12, 2008: An IAEA Board report says that the agency has completed its investigation of Libya’s past nuclear activities and found that Tripoli had addressed all of the outstanding issues related to its past nuclear activity.


November 20, 2009: Libya unexpectedly halts the shipment of the remaining 5.2 kilograms of HEU in spent fuel from its Tajoura research reactor. The material was scheduled to be flown to Russia for disposal that same month as part of an agreement between the Libya, Russia, and the United States. According to State Department cables obtained by the Guardian in 2010, U.S. Energy Department experts said that concerns about the safety and security of the material presented a high level of urgency, and the HEU needed to be removed within one month.

December 21, 2009: Libya allows a Russian-chartered plane to leave the country carrying the last of its HEU spent fuel stocks for disposal in Russia after a month-long delay.

December 2009: The OPCW approves Libya’s request to extend the deadline for the destruction of its mustard gas stockpiles from December 2010 to May 2011. According to the OPCW report for 2009, Libya destroyed 39% of its chemical weapons precursors by the end of the year but destruction of its 23 tons mustard gas had not yet begun.


July 2010: The State Department’s arms control Compliance Report says that Libya is complying with its Biological Weapons Convention and  nuclear nonproliferation obligations. It also says that Libya has made progress destroying its chemical weapons stockpile but has not yet met its obligations to adopt legislation to implement the Chemical Weapons Convention.

October 2010: The destruction of one of Libya's chemical agents, sulfur mustard, is initiated.


February 23, 2011: OPCW spokesperson Michael Luhan tells the Associated Press that Libya destroyed “nearly 13.5 metric tons” of its mustard gas in 2010, accounting for “about 54 percent of its stockpile.”

February 25, 2011: Citing security concerns due to ongoing political unrest, U.S. officials announce the suspension of U.S. embassy operations in Libya.

February 26, 2011: United Nations Security Council unanimously adopts Resolution 1970 condemning the lethal actions taken by Gaddafi forces against civilian political protestors.  The resolution also places financial and travel restrictions on regime officials.  The OPCW announced that machinery breakdowns brought to a halt ongoing destruction of sulfur mustard amid rising tensions.

March 17, 2011: The United Nations Security Council adopts Resolution 1973 authorizing an international response to the Libyan civil war.  The resolution creates a no-fly zone over Libya, strengthens an arms embargo and allows forcible inspection of suspected weapons trafficking ships and planes traveling to the country.

March – October 2011: NATO enforces the no-fly zone established by Resolution 1973.  Fighting continues between loyalist Gaddafi forces and the rebel militia.  The National Transition Council (NTC) is generally internationally recognized as the legitimate government of Libya.  U.S. officials publicly assure that remaining sulfur mustard agent and existing weapons stockpiles are secure during the ongoing conflict.

September 23, 2011: The IAEA confirms a cache of yellowcake uranium was discovered in an abandoned nuclear materials warehouse belonging to the Gaddafi regime.  The material is not deemed a high-level security risk because it is not suitable for use in a weapon.

October 20, 2011: Gaddafi is found and killed by rebel forces in the town of Sirte in western Libya.  NATO military operations end and the NTC forms an interim government and schedules elections.

November 1, 2011: The NTC officially notifies the OPCW of what was determined to be two undeclared chemical weapons stockpiles from the previous regime.  The NTC cooperates with OPCW plans to resume destruction of weapons material.

November 28, 2011: The new government in Tripoli submitted an official declaration of the weapons to the OPCW.

December 2011: The IAEA visits the Tajoura Nuclear Facility in Tripoli and a uranium concentrate storage facility in Sabha.  The nuclear watchdog organization informs the UN Security Council that no previously declared stockpiles had been disturbed or reported missing as a result of the conflict.


January 17-19, 2012: OPCW inspectors visited Libya to verify the previously undisclosed chemical weapons. The inspection’s purpose is two-fold, for verifying the new declaration with regard to types and quantities of chemical weapons, and for helping the Libyan government in determining whether another set of discovered materials could be declared under the provisions of the CWC.

April 2012: Libya fails to meet the international April 29, 2012 deadline for destruction of remaining chemical weapons.  Libya submits a working paper to the Preparatory Committee for the 2015 Review Conference of the Parties to the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons affirming the country’s commitment to nuclear disarmament and compliance with IAEA authorities and regulations.

April 25, 2012: OPCW announced it would start the destruction of the mustard gas stockpile. Canada aids in the funding of the destruction.

May 2012: The government submits a revised plan to the OPCW to complete destruction activities by December 2016 with destruction operations to resume in March 2013.  Current Libyan behavior is indicative of a cooperative relationship with international nonproliferation standards.

May 27 – 28, 2012: The Director-General, Ambassador Ahmet Üzümcü, visited Tripoli and met the Libyan Foreign Minister, H.E. Ashour Saad Ben Khaial, and the Under Secretary of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Dr. Muhammad Abdul Aziz. The Libyan authorities have reaffirmed their destruction of remaining chemical weapons as soon as possible.

August 2012: The NTC transfers power to the elected General National Congress.  Mohammed Magarief is elected by the body as interim head of state.

September 20, 2012: The IAEA approves and signs Libya’s Country Programme Framework (CPF) for the period of 2012 to 2017.  The medium-term planning agreement identifies how nuclear technology and resources will be used for economic development in the country.  The IAEA also conducted two missions to Libya in 2012 to review and support nuclear security and infrastructure.


April 20, 2013: Destruction of the remaining 8.82 metric tons of sulfur mustard stored at Ruwagha begins.

May 4, 2013: Libya completes the destruction of 22.3 metric tons of Category 1 chemical weapons, or nearly 85% of the total declared stocks under OPCW verification.

The remaining chemical weapon stockpile is comprised of about 2.45 metric tons of polymerised sulphur mustard and 1.6 metric tons of sulphur mustard loaded in projectiles, bombs and bomb cartridges, as well as 846 metric tons of precursor chemicals.


January 26, 2014: Libya completes the destruction of its category 1 chemical weapons. The OPCW verifies that the destruction is completed.


-Updated by Alexandra Schmitt and Yuta Kawashima

Implementation of the Iran-IAEA Framework for Cooperation

Press Contact: Kelsey Davenport, Nonproliferation Analyst, (202) 463-8270 x102

Updated: February 2014

On November 11, 2013, Iran and the IAEA reached an agreement outlining Tehran’s cooperation with the agency’s investigation into Iran’s past nuclear activities with possible military dimensions and to clarify the agency's unresolved concerns about Iran's nuclear program. The IAEA first laid out many of these issues in an annex to its November 2011 quarterly report on Iran's nuclear program.

Under the November 11 Joint Statement on a Framework for Cooperation, Iran and the IAEA committed to resolve the agency's concerns through a step-by-step process to address all of the oustanding issues. An annex to the framework laid out the first six actions that Iran pledged to take within three months. This factsheet tracks the implementation of the Framework for Cooperation.

On February 9, Iran and the IAEA announced a further seven actions that Iran would take by May 15, 2014.

The full text of the Framework for Cooperation and its accompanying annex is available here.

Iranian Actions to be Completed by February 11, 2014 Status
Provide mutually agreed relevant information and managed access to the Gchine mine in Bandar Abbas.


Iran facilitated IAEA access to the Gchine uranium mine on January 29, 2014.

Provide mutually agreed relevant information and managed access to the Heavy Water Production Plant.


The IAEA visited the Heavy Water Production Plant at the Arak site on December 8, 2013.

Provide information on all new research reactors.


In a February 9 joint statement, the IAEA and Iran announced that Iran completed the actions agreed to on November 11.

Provide information with regard to the identification of 16 sites designated for the construction of nuclear power plants.


In a February 9 joint statement, the IAEA and Iran announced that Iran completed the actions agreed to on November 11.

Clarification of the announcement made by Iran regarding additional enrichment facilities.


In a February 9 joint statement, the IAEA and Iran announced that Iran completed the actions agreed to on November 11.

Further clarification of the announcement made by Iran with respect to laser enrichment technology.


In a February 9 joint statement, the IAEA and Iran announced that Iran completed the actions agreed to on November 11.

Iranian Actions to be Completed by May 15, 2014

Providing mutually agreed relevant information and managed access to the Saghand mine in Yazd. Not Yet Completed
Providing mutually agreed relevant information and managed access to the Ardakan concentration plant. Not Yet Completed
Submission of an updated Design Information Questionnaire (DIQ) for the IR-40 Reactor (Heavy Water Reactor at Arak). Not Yet Completed
Taking steps to agree with the Agency on the conclusion of a Safeguards Approach for the IR 40 Reactor. Not Yet Completed
Providing mutually agreed relevant information and arranging for a technical visit to Lashkar Ab’ad Laser Centre. Not Yet Completed
Providing information on source material, which has not reached the composition and purity suitable for fuel fabrication or for being isotopically enriched, including imports of such material and on Iran’s extraction of uranium from phosphates. Not Yet Completed

Providing information and explanations for the Agency to assess Iran’s stated need or application for the development of Exploding Bridge Wire detonators.

Not Yet Completed


-Research assistance provided by Ashley Luer


Chemical and Biological Weapons Status at a Glance

Press Contact: Tom Z. Collina, Research Director (202) 463-8270 x104

For more information about the CWC, please see the CWC at a Glance Factsheet and CWC Signatories and States-Parties

For more information about the BWC, please see the BWC at a Glance Factsheet and BWC Signatories and States-Parties

Updated: February 2014

The danger posed by Biological Weapons (BW) and Chemical Weapons (CW) still lingers two decades after the cold war’s end. Despite the reduction of threats as an increasing number of states fulfill their commitments under international conventions, a small number of states still maintain declared and undeclared stockpiles and even active BW and CW programs. A bio-technology revolution is making bio-technology more readily available and presents a potential future proliferation risk. Dual-use chemical processes also present a series of ongoing challenges. Progress has certainly been made by Chemical Weapons Convention (CWC) state-parties and the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) in the destruction of declared CW stockpiles. However, progress on the implementation of the Biological Weapons Convention (BWC) has been slower due to the  lack of a formal verification mechanism.

The chart below details countries possessing or developing CW or BW. It draws on open source intelligence including unclassified government assessments. Taking into account the clandestine and controversial nature of these programs, state capabilities are considered under four headings: State declarations detail the state’s official position on the weapons in question and whether they have declared stockpiles or programs. Allegations look at allegations made by other states, namely the U.S. as to what the status of programs and stockpiles are. Potential delivery systems consider the means that suspected possessors have of delivering such weapons. Any other information is also included which may be of relevance to a state’s capabilities.

The chart also details whether each state has signed, ratified, or acceded to relevant international treaties: the 1972 BWC, which bans offensive biological weapons development and possession; the 1993 CWC, which outlaws chemical weapons development, possession, and use; and the 1925 Geneva Protocol, which forbids the use of chemical and biological weapons in war.


State Declarations: None.

Allegations: None.

State declaration: Declared possession of 16 metric tons of Mustard gas to the OPCW.

Completed destruction on July 11, 2007.

An additional quantity of chemical agents was discovered in September 2011, and destroyed in July 2012.

Geneva Protocol: Acceded 12/20/89

Acceded 6/3/92

CWC: Signed 1/14/93

Ratified 5/11/94

State declaration: China states that it is in compliance with its BWC obligations and that it has never had an active BW program, denouncing such weapons.

Allegations: According to the U.S., China’s BW activities have been extensive and a 1993 State Department Compliance Report alleged that activities continued after China joined the BWC. The 2010 report indicates that little information is known about China’s activities, and that recent dual-use activities may have breached the BWC. Existing infrastructure would allow it to develop, produce, and weaponize agents.

Potential delivery systems: include cruise missiles, fighters, bombers, helicopters, artillery, rockets, mortars, and sprayers.

State declaration: China states that it is in compliance with the CWC. China declared in 1997 that it had a small offensive CW program that has now been dismantled.

Allegations: The U.S. alleged in 2003 that China has an “advanced chemical weapons research and development program.” However, these allegations have decreased in magnitude in recent years with the 2010 report citing insufficient evidence to confirm China’s previous or current activities.

Potential delivery systems: Include artillery, rockets, mortars, landmines, aerial bombs, sprayers, and short- and medium-range ballistic missiles.

Any other information: Approximately 350,000 chemical munitions were left on Chinese soil by Japan during the Second World War. Work with Japan to dispose of these is ongoing at a slow pace.
Geneva Protocol:
Acceded 8/24/29.

BWC: Acceded

CWC: Signed
1/13/93, ratified


State declarations: Cuba denies any BW research efforts.

Allegations: A 2003 State Department Compliance Report [1] indicated that Cuba had “at least a limited developmental offensive biological warfare research and development effort.” The 2010 report claims that “available information did not indicate Cuba’s dual-use activities during the reporting period involved activities prohibited by the BWC.”

Allegations of BW programs have been made by Cuban defectors in the past.

Any other information: Cuba has a relatively advanced biotechnology industrial capabilities.

Allegations: None credible.

Geneva Protocol:
Acceded 6/24/66.

BWC: Signed
4/12/72, ratified

CWC: Signed 1/13/93,
ratified 4/29/97.


State declarations: Two vague statements alluding to a BW capability were made by President Saddat and one of his ministers in 1972. According to the 2010 report, the Egyptian government remains “committed to the prohibition of the development, production and stockpiling of bacteriological and toxin weapons.”

Allegations: Various allegations that Egypt had developed BW by 1972 and that it may not have eliminated this capability. The 2010 report records that “available information did not indicate Egypt’s biological research and development activities during the reporting period were inconsistent with the BWC.”

Potential delivery systems: Missiles.

State declarations: No significant declarations.

Allegations: Allegedly stockpiled CW, and used them in Yemen (1963 – 1967.) This use violated the Geneva Protocol. Egypt is not considered in the CW section of the 2010 report because it is outside the CWC.

Potential delivery systems: Tactical missiles, bombs, shells, mines and other munitions. Bombs were used in Yemen.
Geneva Protocol:
Signed 6/17/25, ratified 12/6/28.

BWC: Signed 4/10/72.

CWC: Has not signed.


State declarations: India is abiding by the BWC and will continue to do so.

Allegations: Very limited – no conclusive evidence of prior or current offensive programs. The 2010 report records that “available information did not indicate that any of India’s biological research and development activities were inconsistent with its BWC obligations.”

Potential delivery systems: Potential delivery systems include short-range, anti-ship cruise missiles; short-range, air-launched tactical missiles; fighter aircraft; artillery; and rockets.

Any other information: Has a strong capability in bio-technological research.

State declarations: Declared in June 1997 that it possessed a CW stockpile in excess of 1000 metric tons of undisclosed chemical agents. India fulfilled its CWC obligations and completed destruction of its stockpile on March 16, 2009.

Any other information: Its industry retains the ability to produce agent precursors—chemicals that can be used in chemical weapons production.
Geneva Protocol
Signed 6/17/25,
ratified 4/ 9/30.

BWC: Signed 1/15/73,
ratified 7/15/74.

CWC: Signed
1/14/93, ratified


State declarations: Has publicly denounced BW.

Allegations: The Defense Intelligence Agency alleged in 2009 that Iran’s BW efforts “may have evolved beyond

agent R&D, and we believe Iran likely has the capability to produce small quantities of

BW agents but may only have a limited ability to weaponize them.” [2] The 2010 report assesses that there is evidence showing Iran continues dual-use activities, but there is no conclusive evidence showing BWC violations.

Potential delivery systems: include short-range cruise missiles; short-range, air-launched tactical missiles; fighter aircraft; artillery shells; and rockets.

Any other information: Iran has a relatively sophisticated pharmaceutical industry.

State declarations: Has denounced the possession and use of CW in international forums.

Allegations: Pre-2003 U.S. intelligence assessments alleged that Iran had a stockpile of CW. This stockpile is thought to have included blister, blood, and choking agents and probably nerve agents.

More recent assessments have been less certain with the 2012 report declaring that "Iran maintains the capability to produce chemical warfare (CW) agents and conducts research that may have offensive applications" and that Iran is "capable of weaponizing CW agents in a variety of delivery systems."

Potential delivery systems: include artillery shells, mortars, rockets, and aerial bombs.

Any other information: Has battlefield experience using CW and employing CW defensive measures during the Iran-Iraq War. CW program believed to have been started after Iraqi CW use.
Geneva Protocol:
Acceded 11/5/29.

BWC: Signed
4/10/72, ratified

CWC: Signed
1/13/93, ratified


State declarations: None by post-2003 governments.

Allegations: None since the 2003 invasion of Iraq by a U.S. led coalition. The 2010 report assesses that Iraq is “not engaged in activities prohibited by the BWC.”

Any other information: Admitted to testing and stockpiling BW in the mid-1990s. These stockpiles appear to have been destroyed prior to the 2003 invasion.

State declarations: No significant stockpiles of CW.

Allegations: None since 2003.

Any other information:

Had extensive program before the Persian Gulf War under which it produced and stockpiled mustard, tabun, sarin, and VX.

Delivered chemical agents against Iranian forces during the Iran-Iraq War using aerial bombs, artillery, rocket launchers, tactical rockets, and helicopter-mounted sprayers. Also used chemical weapons against its Kurdish population in 1988.

Program was largely dismantled by United Nations weapons inspectors in the 1990s.

There remains an unknown quantity of various chemical agents in Iraq. When Iraq joined the CWC in 2009 it make an initial declaration, but as of December 2012 had not completed drafting the plans for the destruction of these weapons. [3]
Geneva Protocol:
Acceded 9/8/31.

BWC: Signed 5/11/72, ratified 6/19/91.

CWC: Acceded 1/13/09.


State declarations: Has revealed little in terms of capabilities or programs. Israel has not given a reason for not signing the BWC.

Allegations: There is belief that Israel has had an offensive BW program in the past. There is no conclusive evidence that this is still the case.

Any other information: Highly sophisticated pharmaceutical and biotechnical industry.

State declarations: Has revealed nothing about its CW capabilities. Israel’s reason for not ratifying the CWC is that other states in the region have not done so.

Allegations: There is belief that Israel had an offensive CW program in the past. Has not been included in the 2005 or 2010 State Department Compliance Reports because Israel is not a party to the CWC. There is no conclusive evidence of an ongoing program although allegations are still made.

Any other information: Israel has a highly sophisticated chemical industry.
Geneva Protocol:
Acceded 2/20/69.

BWC: Has not signed.

CWC: Signed


State declarations: Libya announced in 2003 that it would eliminate its BW program and adhere to its BWC commitments. According to the 2010 report, Libya is in full compliance.

State declarations: In 2003, Libya announced it would be abandoning its CW program. In 2004 it declared possession of chemical agents which it is now in the process of destroying and facilities which it is converting. Libya possessed over 26 metric tons of chemical weapons. The OPCW originally extended Libya’s destruction deadline to May 2011. Due to complications arising from the overthrow of the government, Libya did not meet that deadline, announced it planned to complete destruction by December 2013. On January 26, 2014, destruction of the stockpile was completed.


Geneva Protocol:
Acceded 12/29/71.

BWC: Acceded

CWC: Acceded 1/6/04

North Korea

State declarations: The 2010 report comments that North Korea has yet to declare any of its biological research and development activities as part of the BWC confidence building measures.

Allegations: The 2010 report remarks that North Korea may “still consider the use of biological weapons as a military option”

Potential delivery systems: include short-range, anti-ship cruise missiles; bombers; rockets; mortars; sprayers; artillery; helicopters; and fighters.

State declarations: None

Allegations: North Korea is widely believed to possess a large chemical stockpile including nerve, blister, choking, and blood agents.

The 2012 unclassified intelligence assesment provided to Congress states that North Korea has a "long standing CW program" and "possesses a large stockpile of agents."

Potential delivery systems: include ballistic missiles, artillery, and aircraft.

Geneva Protocol:
Acceded 1/4/89.

BWC: Acceded

CWC: Has not signed.


State declarations: None.

Allegations: No substantial allegations. The 2010 report states that “available information did not suggest that any agent and toxin research activities by Pakistani entities were inconsistent with Pakistan’s BWC obligations.”

Potential delivery systems: include short-range, anti-ship cruise missiles; short-range, air-launched tactical missiles; fighter aircraft; artillery; and rockets.

Any other information: Has ability to support limited biological weapons research and development effort.

State declarations: None.

Allegations: None substantial. Pakistan was not included in the 2005 or 2010 Compliance Reports in relation to the CWC.

Potential delivery systems: include missiles, artillery, and aerial bombs.
Geneva Protocol:
Signed 4/15/60.

BWC: Signed
4/10/72, ratified

CWC: Signed
1/13/93, ratified


State declarations: In 1992, Boris Yeltsin acknowledged that the USSR had pursued an extensive and offensive BW program throughout the 1970s and 1980s. He banned any more of such work being undertaken. However, there is little public information of any more specific declarations of what Russia may continue to possess.

Allegations: Agents weaponized included tularemia, typhus, Q fever, smallpox, plague, anthrax, Venezuelan equine encephalitis, glanders, brucellosis, and Marburg. Researched numerous other agents and toxins that can attack humans, plants, and livestock.

The 2010 report details that Russia continues to engage in dual-use biological research activities, yet there is no evidence that such work is inconsistent with BWC obligations. It assesses that it remains unclear whether Russia has fulfilled its obligations under Article I of the convention.

Potential delivery systems: include fighter aircraft, artillery, rockets, helicopters, short-range ballistic missiles, and cruise missiles. The former Soviet program planned to deliver certain agents, such as smallpox, anthrax, and plague, by ICBM.

State declarations: Possessed the world’s largest chemical weapons stockpile: 40,000 metric tons of chemical agent, including VX, sarin, soman, mustard, lewisite, mustard-lewisite mixtures, and phosgene.

Russia has declared this to the OPCW and has commenced destruction. Along with the United States, Russia received an extension when it was unable to complete destruction by the 2012 deadline imposed by the CWC. As of August 2013, Russia has destroyed about 30,400 metric tons of chemical agents. It plans to complete destruction between 2015-2016. [4]

Allegations: The U.S. has some reservations about Russian compliance, as expressed in the 2010 report which states “The United States is unable to ascertain whether Russia’s CWC declaration is complete.”

Potential delivery systems: include artillery, bombs, spray tanks, and short-range ballistic missiles.

Geneva Protocol:
Acceded 4/5/28.

BWC: Signed
4/10/72, ratified

CWC: Signed
1/13/93, ratified

South Korea

State declarations: None.

Allegations: None.

State declarations: Previously declared a chemical weapons stockpile of unspecified agents, Completed destruction of these on July 10, 2008.

Geneva Protocol:
Acceded 1/4/89.

BWC: Signed
4/10/72, ratified

CWC: Signed
1/14/93, ratified


State declarations: None.

Allegations: No confirmed evidence of a BW program.

State declarations: After acceding to the CWC in 1999, Sudan declared only a small selection of unspecified riot control agents.

Allegations: Unconfirmed reports that Sudan developed and used CW in the past. The U.S. bombed an alleged CW factory in 1998.

The 2005 Compliance Report questions “whether Sudan was in the past, and continues to be, involved in CW programs and possible use of CW agents.” It assesses that there is insufficient evidence available.

No serious allegations in recent years. Sudan was not included in the 2010 report in relation to the CWC.
Geneva Protocol:
Acceded 12/17/80.

BWC: Acceded 10/17/03

CWC: Acceded


State declarations: President Assad has hinted at Syria’s procession of a BW capability according to the 2010 report.

Allegations: Syria has undertaken activities banned by the BWC. According to the 2010 report, there is no evidence that Syria has “abandoned its past, stated intentions to develop a biological deterrent.” President Obama says the United States is monitoring the situation very closely as civil conflict worsens. Potential that chemical/biological weapons will be used.

Potential delivery systems: include fighter aircraft; helicopters; artillery; short-range, anti-ship cruise missiles; short-range, air-launched tactical missiles; and rockets.

State declarations: On September 20, 2013, Syria submitted a declaration of its chemical weapons and facilities to the OPCW after years of denying the program's existence. Syria's declaration came with it's accession to the CWC after the regime used chemical agents against rebels-held areas in Syria.

Allegations: Syria has an extensive program producing a variety of agents, including nerve agents such as sarin and VX, and blistering agents, according to governments and media sources. There are also some allegations of deployed CWs on SCUD missiles. A September 16, 2013 report from the UN confirmed that sarin was used in an August 21, 2013 attack in Damascus.

Potential delivery systems: by aircraft, artillery rocket or ballistic missile.

Any other information:Key elements of its program rely on foreign sources.

Geneva Protocol:
Acceded 12/17/68.

BWC: Signed

CWC: Acceded 09/12/13*


State declarations: None.

Allegations: 2010 Compliance Report confirms that “available information did not indicate that any biological research and development activities by Taiwan entities during the reporting period were inconsistent with the BWC.” There are “no unresolved BWC compliance issues involving Taiwan.”

Any other information: Has been upgrading its biotechnology capabilities in recent years.

State declarations: Small quantities of CW for research. Denies any other possession.

Allegations: Rumors of a defensive CW capability. However, Taiwan was omitted from the 2005 and 2010 Compliance Reports.

Other information: Has an advanced chemical industrial capability.
Geneva Protocol: Has not acceded.

Has pledged to
adhere to the BWC and CWC.

United States

State declarations: Unilaterally gave up its biological weapons program in 1969. The destruction of all offensive BW agents occurred between 1971 and 1973.

Currently conducting research as part of its biodefense program.

Allegations: According to a compliance report published by the Russian government in August 2010, the U.S. is undertaking research on Smallpox which is prohibited by the World Health Organization.

The U.S. is also accused of undertaking BW research in order to improve defenses against bio-terror attacks which is “especially questionable from the standpoint of Article I of the BTWC.”

Any other information: In May 2012, the second of the controversial H5N1 avian flu papers was published. The US National Science Advisory Board for Biosecurity advised against publishing due to concerns that the dual-use research would be used in biowarfare.

State declarations: Declared a large chemical arsenal of 27,771 metric tons to the OPCW after the CWC came into force in 1997. Along with Russia, the United States recieved an extension when it was unable to complete destruction of its chemical stockpiles by 2012. As of August 2013, the United States has destroyed nearly 25,000 metric tons of chemical agents. The United States Army believes that destruction will be completed by 2023.

Allegations: The Russian report also alleges that the U.S. has legislation which could inhibit inspections and investigations of U.S. chemical facilities.

Russia has also accused the U.S. of not fully reporting chemical agents removed from Iraq between 2003 and 2008 to the U.S. for testing and subsequent destruction.
Geneva Protocol:
Signed 6/17/25,
ratified 4/10/75.

BWC: Signed
4/10/72, ratified

CWC: Signed
1/13/93, ratified


*Syria sent a letter to the United Nations Secretary General on September 12, 2013 which said that Assad signed a legislative decree providing the accession of Syria to the Chemical Weapons Convention. In the letter, Assad said Syria woud observe its CWC obligations immediately, as opposed to 30 days from the date of accession, as stipulated in the treaty.


2010 Report on Adherence to and Compliance with Arms Control, Nonproliferation and Disarmament Agreements and Commitments, Department of State, July 2010,

2005 Report on Adherence to and Compliance with Arms Control, Nonproliferation and Disarmament Agreements and Commitments, Department of State, August 2005,

2010 Statement of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation on Compliance, August 2010,

Arms Control Today


1. Cited in 2010 Compliance Report, 2003 report is not in the public domain.

2. “Annual Threat Assessment,” Statement before the Committee on Armed Services, United States Senate, March 10, 2009,

3. U.S. Department of State, "Condition (10) (C) Report: Compliance With teh Convention on the Prohibition of the Development, Production, Stockpiling and Use of Chemical Weapons and on Their Destruction," last accessed Aug. 29, 2013,

4. Horner, Daniel “Russia Revises Chemical Arms Deadline,” Arms Control Today, July and August 2010,

5. Interview with President Assad of Syria, Der Spiegel, January 19, 2009,1518,602110-2,00.html

The 1997 IAEA Additional Protocol At a Glance

Press Contacts: Daryl Kimball, (202) 463-8270 x107 or Kelsey Davenport, (202) 463-8270 x102

Updated: February 2014

The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) began an effort in 1993 to better constrain NPT member-states' ability to illicitly pursue nuclear weapons after secret nuclear weapons programs in Iraq and North Korea exposed weaknesses in existing agency safeguards. That effort eventually produced a voluntary Additional Protocol, designed to strengthen and expand existing IAEA safeguards for verifying that non-nuclear-weapon states-parties to the nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty (NPT) only use nuclear materials and facilities for peaceful purposes. The IAEA is responsible for validating that NPT states-parties are complying with the treaty, which bars all states except China, France, Russia, the United Kingdom, and the United States from acquiring nuclear weapons. India, Israel, and Pakistan have not joined the NPT and possess nuclear weapons.

Iraq, an NPT state-party, successfully circumvented IAEA safeguards by exploiting the agency's system of confining its inspection and monitoring activities to facilities or materials explicitly declared by each state in its safeguards agreement with the agency. To close the "undeclared facilities" loophole, the IAEA initiated a safeguards improvement plan known as "Program 93+2." The plan's name reflected the fact that it was drafted in 1993 with the intention of being implemented in two years.

Putting "Program 93+2" into effect, however, took more time than expected, and the program has subsequently been implemented in two parts. The IAEA, within its existing authority, initiated the first part in January 1996. This first step added new monitoring measures, such as environmental sampling, no-notice inspections at key measurement points within declared facilities, and remote monitoring and analysis. The second part of "Program 93+2" required a formal expansion of the agency's legal mandate in the form of an additional protocol to be adopted by each NPT member to supplement its existing IAEA safeguards agreement. The IAEA adopted a Model Additional Protocol on May 15, 1997.

The Additional Protocol

The essence of the Additional Protocol is to reshape the IAEA's safeguards regime from a quantitative system focused on accounting for known quantities of materials and monitoring declared activities to a qualitative system aimed at gathering a comprehensive picture of a state's nuclear and nuclear-related activities, including all nuclear-related imports and exports. The Additional Protocol also substantially expands the IAEA's ability to check for clandestine nuclear facilities by providing the agency with authority to visit any facility, declared or not, to investigate questions about or inconsistencies in a state's nuclear declarations. NPT states-parties are not required to adopt an additional protocol, although the IAEA is urging all to do so.

The model protocol outlined four key changes that must be incorporated into each NPT state-party's additional protocol.

  • First, the amount and type of information that states will have to provide to the IAEA is greatly expanded. In addition to the current requirement for data about nuclear fuel and fuel-cycle activities, states will now have to provide an "expanded declaration" on a broad array of nuclear-related activities, such as "nuclear fuel cycle-related research and development activities—not involving nuclear materials" and "the location, operational status and the estimated annual production" of uranium mines and thorium concentration plants. (Thorium can be processed to produce fissile material, the key ingredient for nuclear weapons.) All trade in items on the Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG) trigger list will have to be reported to the IAEA as well. The NSG is a group of 45 nuclear supplier countries that seeks to voluntarily prevent the use of peaceful nuclear technology for military purposes by restricting nuclear and nuclear-related exports.
  • Second, the number and types of facilities that the IAEA will be able to inspect and monitor is substantially increased beyond the previous level. In order to resolve questions about or inconsistencies in the information a state has provided on its nuclear activities, the new inspection regime provides the IAEA with "complementary," or pre-approved, access to "any location specified by the Agency," as well as all of the facilities specified in the "expanded declaration." By negotiating an additional protocol, states will, in effect, guarantee the IAEA access on short notice to all of their declared and, if necessary, undeclared facilities in order "to assure the absence of undeclared nuclear material and activities."

  • Third, the agency's ability to conduct short notice inspections is augmented by streamlining the visa process for inspectors, who are guaranteed to receive within one month's notice "appropriate multiple entry/exit" visas that are valid for at least a year.

  • Fourth, the Additional Protocol provides for the IAEA's right to use environmental sampling during inspections at both declared and undeclared sites. It further permits the use of environmental sampling over a wide area rather than being confined to specific facilities.


The United States signed an additional protocol to its IAEA safeguards agreement in 1998 and the Senate provided its advice and consent to ratify it in March 2004. The Senate, however, conditioned its consent to ratification on the president certifying that appropriate managed access procedures for international inspections are in force. Such procedures are supposed to lessen the danger that inspection may compromise information of “direct national security significance.” Following a lengthy inter-agency process to provide such certifications, the U.S. additional protocol entered into force Jan. 6, 2009.

The United States, along with the IAEA and the Security Council, has called on Iran to resume voluntary implementation of and ratify its additional protocol, which it signed in December 2003, after Tehran stopped adhering to the measure in February 2006. Iran stopped applying the measure days after the IAEA referred it to the UN Security Council. Iranian officials have stated that Tehran will consider renewing implementation of its additional protocol if its nuclear file is referred back to the IAEA from the UN Security Council. Iran argues that the IAEA is the “sole competent authority” responsible for verifying nuclear safeguards and has asserted that the Security Council interferes with the IAEA’s work by politicizing the nuclear issue.

As of December 2013, 122 NPT states-parties have concluded additional protocols that are now in force. Another 21 states-parties have signed additional protocols. For details on the entire list of countries see the IAEA Web site here.