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Review conference opens for nuclear weapons treaty

[JURIST] The 2005 Nuclear Non-proliferation Treaty Review Conference [official website] opened Monday in New York, with almost 190 nations gathering to review progress under the 1970 treaty [UN backgrounder]. The conference comes as nuclear tensions with North Korea [JURIST news archive] and Iran [JURIST news archive] increased this week, with North Korea announcing it was ending negotiations over its nuclear program and Iran claiming it was beginning uranium enrichment again this week. UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan is expected to warn member countries of a "crisis" on the treaty, as major nuclear powers like the US, Russia and China have failed to cut back on their nuclear arsenals. International Atomic Energy Agency chief Mohamed ElBaradei will also address the conference and is expected to propose [IAEA press release] placing nuclear fuel production under multilateral control. The US State Department has more on the conference and its objectives. AP has more.

2:23 PM ET - As expected, UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan began the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Review conference Monday with remarks on the NPT treaty's weaknesses [full transcript]. Annan stated that new threats and technology have made sections of the 1970 treaty outdated. Annan commented on violations of the treaty by rogue states and urged the 188-states party to the treaty to act in the face of these new realities. AFP has more.

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