"I want to tell you that your fact sheet on the [Missile Technology Control Regime] is very well done and useful for me when I have to speak on MTCR issues."

– Amb. Thomas Hajnoczi
Chair, MTCR
May 19, 2021
Treaties & Agreements

Tuvalu and Gambia Ratify the CTBT

T hus far in this year, Tuvalu and Gambia have ratified the 1996 Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty (CTBT), bringing the total number of countries who have both signed and ratified the treaty to 172. Honorary Prime Minister of Tuvalu Kausea Matano signed the instrument of ratification for the CTBT on January 24, and the accomplishment was officially marked in a ceremony on March 31 at the United Nations in New York City. Tuvalu signed the CTBT in September 2018. “Our Pacific region has suffered from the effects of decades of nuclear testing,” said Tuvaluan Minister of Foreign Affairs Simon Kofe By...

Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons


This treaty prohibits the use, threat of use, development, production, manufacturing, acquisition, possession, stockpiling, transfer, stationing and installment of nuclear weapons or assistance with any prohibited activities. 


The Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons prohibits the use, threat of use, development, production, manufacturing, acquisition, possession, stockpiling, transfer, stationing and installment of nuclear weapons or assistance with any prohibited activities. It requires states-parties to declare if they once had or currently have nuclear weapons and if there are nuclear weapons on their territory. It requires states-parties that currently have nuclear weapons to destroy them and those that have nuclear weapons on their territory to remove them. States-parties must also provide victim assistance to those impacted by nuclear weapon use and testing and environmental remediation assistance to areas impacted by nuclear weapon use and testing.

As of September 23, 2022, 91 states have signed the treaty and 68 have ratified it.

Opened for Signature: September 20, 2017

Entry into Force: January 22, 2021

Official Text: http://disarmament.un.org/treaties/t/tpnw/text

Status and Signatories: http://disarmament.un.org/treaties/t/tpnw

ACA Backgrounder: https://www.armscontrol.org/factsheets/nuclearprohibition



Subject Resources:

Arms Trade Treaty


This treaty establishes common international standards for regulating the international trade in conventional arms, and seeks to prevent and eradicate the illicit trade in conventional arms and prevent their diversion.


The Arms Trade Treaty is a multilateral treaty designed to regulate international trade in conventional arms. The United States was the 91st state to sign the Treaty. All parties must not authorize arms which would violate the UN Security Council’s Article VII, break any international treaties or arms embargoes, or be used in crimes or attacks against civilians. Importing states must make information about authorization of imports and exports available to exporting states. Transit states or trans-shipment states also have access to relevant information on authorizations in question subject to its national laws, practices and policies.

Opened for Signature: 3 June 2013

Entry into force: 24 December 2014

Official Text: http://disarmament.un.org/treaties/t/att/text

Status and Signatories: http://disarmament.un.org/treaties/t/att

ACA Backgrounder: https://www.armscontrol.org/factsheets/arms_trade_treaty

New Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty


A treaty between the Russian Federation and the United States with central standards on further reduction and limitation of offensive arms to be met by February 5, 2018.



The New Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (New START) sets limits on strategic arms that must be met by the United States and the Russian Federation by February 5, 2018. Each state has the flexibility to determine its own structure for reduction so long as their strategic forces will fall within the aggregate limits of the treaty. Both states are subject to verification measures through on-site inspections, data exchanges, and facilitation of monitoring. The two types of on-site inspections are: Type One which covers deployed and non-deployed strategic systems, and Type Two which only inspects non-deployed. New START does not pertain to testing, development or deployment of programs or long-range conventional strike capabilities. See New START at a Glance for more information.

Opened for Signature: 8 April 2010

Entry into force: 5 February 2011

Official Text: https://2009-2017.state.gov/documents/organization/140035.pdf

Status and Signatories: http://www.state.gov/t/avc/newstart/index.htm

ACA Backgrounder: https://www.armscontrol.org/factsheets/NewSTART

Country Resources:

Convention on Cluster Munitions


This treaty, through prohibition and a framework for action, addresses the humanitarian consequences of civilians by cluster munitions.


The Convention on Cluster Munitions bans all use, production, transfer and stockpiling of cluster munitions. Cluster munitions do not distinguish between civilians and combatants and can leave behind unexploded ordnance which can harm civilians and be detrimental to economic and social development for decades after use. The Convention aids in clearance of contaminated areas in order to prevent future disasters. It also provides risk reduction education and establishes a framework for cooperation and assistance for survivors.

Opened for Signature: 3 December 2008

Entry into force: 1 August 2010

Official Text: http://disarmament.un.org/treaties/t/cluster_munitions/text

Status and Signatories: http://disarmament.un.org/treaties/t/cluster_munitions

ACA Backgrounder: https://www.armscontrol.org/factsheets/clusterataglance

International Code of Conduct against Ballistic Missile Proliferation (ICOC)


This code is an agreement between states on how they should conduct their missile trade and bolsters efforts to curb ballistic missile proliferation.


The International Code of Conduct against Ballistic Missile Proliferation (ICOC), now known as the Hague Code of Conduct against Ballistic Missile Proliferation (HCOC), is a political initiative aimed at globally curbing ballistic missile proliferation. The Code is only an agreement between states on how they should conduct trade; it does not call for the destruction of missiles. States must restrain development, testing, and deployment of ballistic missiles capable of mass destruction, and enforce efforts in nonproliferation of these missiles. There are no legal obligations or inspection systems, but instead broad principles with which states are encouraged comply. The Code supplements the Missile Technology Control Regime (MTCR), which seeks to limit the risks of proliferation of weapons of mass destruction.

Opened for Signature: 2002

Entry into force: 25 November 2002

Official Text: http://www.hcoc.at/?tab=what_is_hcoc&page=text_of_the_hcoc

Status and Signatories: http://www.state.gov/t/isn/trty/101466.htm

ACA Backgrounder: https://www.armscontrol.org/factsheets/mtcr

Strategic Offensive Reductions Treaty (SORT)


This treaty required the United States and the Russian Federation to reduce their deployed strategic nuclear forces. It took effect and expired on Dec. 31, 2012. Both could then change the size of their deployed strategic nuclear forces.


The Strategic Offensive Reductions Treaty (SORT) required both the United States and the Russian Federation to reduce and limit their strategic nuclear warheads to a certain number, determine the composition and structure of their offensive arms, and agree that the Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty I (START I) remain in force. SORT did not have any verification or compliance provisions. Yet, both states agreed to meet at least twice a year at the Bilateral Implementation Commission (BIC) for progress updates. The treaty allowed for withdrawal upon 90 days of written notice.

Opened for Signature: 24 May 2002

Entry into force: 1 June 2003

Official Text: https://media.nti.org/documents/sort_moscow_treaty.pdf

Status and Signatories: http://www.nti.org/learn/treaties-and-regimes/strategic-offensive-reductions-treaty-sort/

ACA Backgrounder: https://www.armscontrol.org/factsheets/sort-glance

Country Resources:

Mine Ban Treaty


This treaty seeks to eradicate landmines by prohibiting the use, stockpiling, production, and transfer of antipersonnel mines.


The Mine Ban Treaty is officially titled the Convention on the Prohibition of the Use, Stockpiling, Production and Transfer of Anti-Personnel Mines and on Their Destruction. It bans antipersonnel mines and stockpiles, and prohibits states from producing or transferring them. It also obligates states to conduct mine risk education, and provide assistance to other state parties and for the care and rehabilitation of survivors. States must ensure the terms of the Treaty are upheld in their territory and provide progress reports.

Opened for Signature: 3 December 1997

Entry into force: 1 March 1999

Official Text: https://www.un.org/Depts/mine/UNDocs/ban_trty.htm

Status and Signatories: http://www.icbl.org/en-gb/the-treaty/treaty-status.aspx

ACA Backgrounder: https://www.armscontrol.org/factsheets/ottawa

Comprehensive Test-Ban Treaty (CTBT)


This is a legally binding global ban on all nuclear explosive testing.


The Comprehensive Test-Ban Treaty (CTBT) is composed of three parts: Part I details the International Monitoring System (IMS), Part II focuses on the On-Site Inspections (OSI) component, and Part III is on Confidence-Building Measures (CBMs). The IMS conducts seismological, hydroacoustic, and other monitoring tests. The CTBT bans nuclear test explosions or any nuclear explosion in an effort for eventual international nuclear disarmament. As of 2016, eight Annex 2 states must either sign or ratify the Treaty for to enter into force. If, three years after the anniversary of its opening for signature the Treaty has not entered into force, a conference for the majority of the ratifying States may be held to examine the requirements not yet met. The Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty Organization (CTBTO) is an international organization with two organs: the Provisional Technical Secretariat (PTS) which coordinates with countries to develop and maintain an international network of monitoring stations and radionuclide laboratories, and the Preparatory Commission which is designed to help achieve the object and purpose of the Treaty.

Opened for Signature: 24 September 1996

Entry into force: Pending (Requires ratification by 8 additional states, including China, Democratic People's Republic of Korea, Egypt, India, Iran, Israel, Pakistan, and the United States of America) 

Official Text: http://disarmament.un.org/treaties/t/ctbt/text

Status and Signatories: http://disarmament.un.org/treaties/t/ctbt

ACA Backgrounder: https://www.armscontrol.org/factsheets/test-ban-treaty-at-a-glance

African Nuclear-Weapons-Free Zone Treaty


This treaty, also known as the Treaty of Pelindaba, ensures the denuclearization of Africa.



The African Nuclear-Weapons-Free Zone Treaty, also known as the Treaty of Pelindaba, was signed by 47 of the continent’s 53 states, and prohibits states from conducting research on, developing, manufacturing, stockpiling, acquiring, possessing, or having control over any nuclear explosive device by any means anywhere. Parties are also banned from receiving assistance on research or development, and cannot station any nuclear explosive device on their territory. Encouragement for a state that breaks any component of this Treaty is also prohibited. States do have the decision regarding whether or not to allow foreign ships and aircrafts to pass through their borders. The treaty does not prohibit from peaceful nuclear activities but states are obligated to undergo verification by the IAEA.

Opened for Signature: 11 April 1996

Entry into force: 15 July 2009

Official Text: http://disarmament.un.org/treaties/t/pelindaba/text

Status and Signatories: http://disarmament.un.org/treaties/t/pelindaba

ACA Backgrounder: https://www.armscontrol.org/factsheets/nwfz

Subject Resources:


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