President Biden Statement Ahead of the 10th Review Conference of the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons
Today, as the world gathers for the Tenth Review Conference for the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT), the United States renews its commitment to the world to be a responsible steward of its nuclear arsenal, and to continue working toward the ultimate goal of a world without nuclear weapons. That commitment is why the United States joined together with the other Nuclear Weapons States in January to affirmatively state our shared belief that a nuclear war cannot be won and must never be fought, and it is why my administration has prioritized reducing the role of nuclear weapons in our national security strategy.
I’ve worked on arms control from the earliest days of my career, and the health of the NPT has always rested on meaningful, reciprocal arms limits between the United States and Russian Federation. Even at the height of the Cold War, the United States and the Soviet Union were able to work together to uphold our shared responsibility to ensure strategic stability. Today, my Administration is ready to expeditiously negotiate a new arms control framework to replace New START when it expires in 2026. But negotiation requires a willing partner operating in good faith. And Russia’s brutal and unprovoked aggression in Ukraine has shattered peace in Europe and constitutes an attack on fundamental tenets of international order. In this context, Russia should demonstrate that it is ready to resume work on nuclear arms control with the United States. China also has a responsibility as an NPT nuclear weapons state and a member of the P5 to engage in talks that will reduce the risk of miscalculation and address destabilizing military dynamics. There is no benefit to any of our nations, or for the world, to resist substantive engagement on arms control and nuclear non-proliferation.
The United States is determined to lead by the power of our example. Through diplomacy – in coordination with our Allies and regional partners – we have developed a proposal to secure a mutual return to full implementation of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action to ensure that Iran does not acquire a nuclear weapon. We are working closely with the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) to ensure the AUKUS partnership among Australia, the United Kingdom, and the United States meets the highest nonproliferation standards. And we are re-establishing our leadership in the peaceful use of nuclear energy, including seeking to establish the IAEA Additional Protocol as a universal standard for both international safeguards and for nuclear supply arrangements, and continuing our efforts to limit the spread of sensitive enrichment and reprocessing technology.
In this moment of uncertainty and upheaval on the global stage, reaffirming our shared commitment to the grounding principles of the global nonproliferation regime has never been more crucial. The world can be confident that my Administration will continue to support the NPT and seek to strengthen the nonproliferation architecture that protects people everywhere.