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The 2010 NPT Review Conference: Some Breathing Space Gained, But No Breakthrough


The eighth Review Conference of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty ended on 28 May with a consensus final document. A further deepening of the non-proliferation regime's crisis was thus avoided. The more cooperative policy of the Obama administration was one of the main reasons for this partial success which was assisted by the pragmatic negotiation posture of some moderate non-aligned states. However, the result is a compromise at the level of the lowest common denominator: the parties did not agree on bold steps towards nuclear disarmament, nor did they strengthen the toolbox for non-proliferation. In the end, the most outstanding result was the plan for a conference on ways and means to foster a Middle East nuclear weapon free zone.