Key Roles

Over four decades after its entry into force in 1970, the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT) has 190 States as Parties.

Parties are preparing for the 2015 Review Conference convened to review the Treaty´s implementation. Such Review Conferences have been held at five-year intervals since 1975, when the first Conference was convened in Geneva.

The IAEA is not a party to the Treaty but is entrusted with key roles and responsibilities under it. Under the NPT, the IAEA has specific roles as the international safeguards inspectorate and as a multilateral channel for transferring peaceful applications of nuclear technology:

NPT Article III: The IAEA administers international safeguards to verify that non-nuclear weapon States party to the NPT fulfill the non-proliferation commitment they have made, "with a view to preventing diversion of nuclear energy from peaceful uses to nuclear weapons or other nuclear explosive devices."

NPT Article IV: The Agency facilitates and provides a channel for endeavours aimed at "the further development of the applications of nuclear energy for peaceful purposes, especially in the territories of non-nuclear-weapon States Party to the Treaty, with due consideration for the needs of the developing areas of the world."

In practical terms, the IAEA also is seen as having roles in connection with verification of nuclear-weapon-free zones and in the context of verifying ex-nuclear weapon material.

Last update: 14 October 2014