The NNPT currently has over 140 signatories.* In addition, regional agreements exist that preclude the placement of nuclear weapons in Latin America, outer space, the seabed, the South Pacific, and Antarctica.

U.S. export controls on nuclear-related items were originally based on authority in the Atomic Energy Act of 1954. The Nuclear Non-Proliferation Act of 1978 updated the Atomic Energy Act and is the principal authority for the control of nuclear, dual use items. Although the NNPT does not specifically obligate signatories to institute and practice broad export controls, such controls are implicit in treaty commitments. In 1974, a group of countries signed a letter of agreement prohibiting the export of certain items to "non-weapon" states without a pledge of "no explosive use" and acceptance of International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) safeguards. The list of items triggering the need for assurances and IAEA safeguards became known as the "trigger list," and the group became known as the Zangger Committee, after its first chairman, Claude Zangger.

In 1978, another group of countries committed themselves to similar, but more comprehensive export guidelines in support of nonproliferation goals and added technology and technical assistance to the "trigger" list. This group is known as the Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG), or London Suppliers Group (the group originally met in London).


U.S. missile technology controls were implemented on July 31, 1987, by both the Departments of Commerce and State for items under their respective control, as part of the multilateral Missile Technology Control Regime (MTCR). The MTCR was developed in response to the challenge of missile proliferation and the ensuing threat to the security of its members and to world peace. The arrangement developed from the conventional arms talks of the 1970s into a formal arrangement in 1987 among France, Germany, Japan, Canada, the United Kingdom, Italy, and the United States. Australia, Spain, the Netherlands, Belgium, and Luxembourg have since joined the organization.


Countries of proliferation concern that have not signed the NNPT are Argentina, Brazil, India, Israel, Pakistan, and South Africa. Among countries of concern that have signed the treaty are Iran, Iraq, and North Korea.


The members of the Zangger Committee are Australia, Canada, Czechoslovakia, Denmark, Finland, the Federal Republic of Germany, the former German Democratic Republic, Greece, Hungary, Italy, Japan, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Sweden, Switzerland, the United Kingdom, the United States, and the Soviet Union. (France, although not a signatory to the NNPT or to the letter in question, agreed to abide by the letter's guidelines.)


The members of the Nuclear Suppliers Group are Belgium, Canada, Czechoslovakia, France, the Federal Republic of Germany, the former German Democratic Republic, Italy, Japan, the Netherlands, Poland, Sweden, Switzerland, the United States, the United Kingdom, and the Soviet Union.

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