NWC And The Step-By-Step Approach To Disarmament – Some nuclear weapon states have criticised the call for a nuclear weapons convention on the basis that nuclear disarmament requires a step-by-step approach rather than a comprehensive approach. The next steps identified by the NWS include entry into force of the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty, further reductions in nuclear stockpiles and negotiation of a ban on production of fissile material.
However, many other states, including New Zealand and Malaysia have argued that focusing on a NWC is compatible with a step-by-step process and in fact would aid it. Malaysia, which introduces the annual.
UN resolution, notes “the resolution specifically mentions negotiations “leading to” a nuclear weapons convention and not “on” a nuclear weapons convention, thereby allowing for the kind of steps that the nuclear weapons states themselves are committed to support.
In fact the NWC identifies elements of disarmament which are important in the step-by-step approach. In addition, by combining a step-by-step approach with a comprehensive approach, the NWC could help break the deadlock in international disarmament negotiations. States are often unwilling to adhere to a single disarmament step because their nuclear forces are atypical and a step could put them at a disadvantage. Such States would be more willing to agree to a step which placed them at a temporary disadvantage if they were confident that the process was moving quickly to a non-discriminatory treaty on complete prohibition and elimination. An example of this is India, which supports a NWC and initially proposed a CTBT but refused to support the treaty unless it included a commitment to negotiate for complete nuclear disarmament.