Talk:Nuclear-weapon-free zone

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Austria?[edit]

According to the map, Austria is in a NWFZ; but the article doesn't mention it. While it believe it is a NWFZ, is there a reference for that?--Oneiros (talk) 23:52, 16 January 2008 (UTC)

Googling gives a lot of references, not sure which is best to include or why it's not in article currently. --JWB (talk) 00:05, 17 January 2008 (UTC)
Found it: de:Bundesverfassungsgesetz für ein atomfreies Österreich--Oneiros (talk) 21:21, 17 January 2008 (UTC)
The foreign east-Germany is a NWFZ too. See 4+2 treaty. —Preceding unsigned comment added by 94.218.18.72 (talk) 23:16, 3 September 2009 (UTC)
Yes. File:Nwfz.svg must be corrected.--Oneiros (talk) 00:11, 4 September 2009 (UTC)
It is not a UN-sponsored treaty - article text now explains this is part of the definition. --JWB (talk) 01:24, 4 September 2009 (UTC)
Hrm. But east-Germany is not nuclear sharing, but NPT.--Oneiros (talk) 06:17, 4 September 2009 (UTC)
According to Nuclear sharing, nuclear weapons are stationed in only one place, Büchel, not all over West-Germany... in a war, they would be put on airplanes that could fly anywhere inside or outside of Germany. The coloring should be read as Germany the national government, not a range of territory. That, and I don't have SVG vector data for the former BRD-DDR boundary. :) --JWB (talk) 08:17, 4 September 2009 (UTC)

High Seas[edit]

This article has a map of the "high seas." It appears to exclude not only territorial waters (which extend 12 nautical miles from the shore) but also exclusive economic zones (which extend 200 nautical miles from the shore). I think this should be changed. The "high seas" should include all international waters, i.e. everything outside territorial waters. International law gives states full jurisdiction only in their territorial waters. Their jurisdiction in the exclusive economic zone is limited to economic, not security matters. The principle of freedom of navigation in international waters means that nuclear armed vessels are permitted to travel through exclusive economic zones. The implication is that nuclear weapon free zones apply to territorial waters but not exclusive economic zones.

I'd be interested in the views of others on this point. NPguy (talk) 18:17, 29 January 2011 (UTC)

At least some of the NWFZs (Southeast Asian) are defined in terms of EEZs if I remember correctly.
The high seas map is a previously existing one I found on Wikipedia. I don't know if there is a world map showing 12-mile zones, but at world map scale it would look little different from an ordinary land vs. sea map anyway and have less additional value. You are welcome to look for one though.
The text could use any additional facts on international waters issues but I don't see a case for removing the map unless it is demonstrated to be irrelevant in all major POVs. --JWB (talk) 09:21, 20 July 2011 (UTC)

Nuclear Weapon States[edit]

This article uses the term "nuclear weapons state" to refer to states possessing nuclear weapons. The NPT defines a "nuclear weapon state" as one that has tested a nuclear weapon before 1967. This terminology is now fairly standard, e.g. in U.S. domestic law and in the Nuclear Suppliers Guidelines. To make this distinction clear, and to avoid granting NPT recognition to the nuclear weapon status of non-NPT parties, different terminology us usually used for the non-NPT parties, e.g. states possessing nuclear weapons. To avoid confusion I think this article should adopt that standard terminology.

Among other things, this would entail changing the map (either to make a distinction between NWS under the NPT and other states with nuclear weapons or to label them all as states possessing nuclear weapons) and revising section 5 (Non-NWS, non-NWFZ countries). NPguy (talk) 23:05, 10 July 2011 (UTC)

I've revised text in response, both cutting down on unqualified use of NWS to mean nuclear weapon-possessing states, and adding explicit discussion of both NWS and territorial waters to avoid any confusion.
However I do not feel that the NPT nuclear club should always be referred to as NWS with no qualifiers, or that NWS should be considered an ambiguity-free reference to the NPT powers. The NPT article itself does not do those, and qualifies NWS at many mentions. --JWB (talk) 10:01, 20 July 2011 (UTC)

Awkward section[edit]

The section "Countries without nuclear weapons or NWFZ" does not hold together. Even the title is awkward. What does it mean to be "without" a NWFZ? You're either inside such a zone or outside. This same awkward formulation is now repeated inside the section. I think the problem is the concept. It would be simpler just to talk about "Countries outside NWFZs." One category in that section would be countries that have (or are presumed to have - Israel) nuclear weapons.

Within the section, I think it would be clearer to organize geographically. I don't think it's correct to imply that non-NATO states in Europe are part of a nuclear umbrella. The list might look like this:

  • Europe (including Russia and Turkey):
    • 3 states with NW
    • 24 NNWS in the NATO umbrella
    • 20 other states, including 4 EU Member States and 6 former Soviet states
  • Asia (and Pacific):
    • 5 states with (or presumed to have) NW
    • 12 Middle Eastern states
    • 6 South Asian countries
    • 3 major non-NATO allies of the United States (including Australia)
    • 3 Pacific island states
  • North America
    • 1 state with NW
    • 1 NNWS in NATO

I would note that the list of Major non-NATO allies includes several states in NWFZ, several states with NW, several Middle Eastern states. I believe only two or three are considered to be under the U.S. "nuclear umbrella" (Japan and South Korea; I'm unsure about Australia). NPguy (talk) 02:28, 21 July 2011 (UTC)

I think it makes sense to organize by regional (but not strictly continental) security climate influencing the likelihood of nuclear proliferation.
Europe (west of the FSU) does not have a NWFZ but does have another kind of regional security regime which prevents conflict and motivation for additional states to acquire nuclear weapons. This contrasts with the Middle East which does not have such a regional order and does have continuing military competition including suspicions of nuclear weapons development by additional states.
So even though Europe/EU/NATO has a majority of the non-NWFZ non-NWS states, those states are not proliferation risks, and can be dealt with before going on to list the states in regions where there is no such effective check against arms races. --JWB (talk) 09:11, 21 July 2011 (UTC)
What about the idea of including states with and without nuclear weapons in this section? To my mind, the awkwardness came from limiting to states without nuclear weapons. If we're trying to explain the security dynamic that might drive nuclear proliferation and make NWFZs difficult, the fact that there are six countries in Asia with nuclear weapons (this time I'm including Russia in the count) has to be a relevant factor, alongside the volatile security dynamics in three sub-regions (Middle East/West Asia, South Asia, Northeast Asia). NPguy (talk) 02:28, 22 July 2011 (UTC)
I will give this some thought. It would facilitate discussion of each regional situation. On the other hand, the article so far has steered clear of getting too far into that. It doesn't even have individual discussion of each NWFZ, just lists and overall statements. Mostly I want to give the reader some overall feel; they can follow links to the other articles for detail on those topics.
I am not sure it makes sense to treat Asia as a unit. Each of its subregions is as big as a continent, and on the other hand, Europe is just one peninsula of Asia. Asia has 60% of world population and 30% of area. What happens at one end has limited effect on the other. And there are two NWFZs in Central Asia, so clearly the sheer number of nuclear powers does not prevent NWFZs. --JWB (talk) 11:36, 22 July 2011 (UTC)


The (renamed) section is now regionally organized, which I agree is better. I have 25 non-nuclear NATO states, while you said 24 above. --JWB (talk) 23:39, 24 February 2012 (UTC)

Ports & nuclear weapon carrying ships[edit]

As the article is currently written, I am unclear as to if the UN-recognized nuclear-weapon free zone prohibits ships from nuclear weapon states which carry nuclear weapons from using ports in the NWFZ. Is that allowed? (The EEZ map seems to imply that it's not, but it's never stated explicitly - at any rate it probably would be best to redraw the EEZ map to be a more explicit NWFZ map.) Is it allowed if the weapons are deactivated for the duration of the stay in port? Are there exceptions for emergencies (can a disabled ship limp into port in a NWFZ with the weapons, or does it have to dump it's nuclear weapons overboard first)? How do things work with "we can neither confirm nor deny the presence or absence of nuclear weapons aboard this ship"-type policies? (I realize that local laws may change the scope, but for the purposes of the article, I'm looking for what the UN-sanctioned NWFZ policy is.) -- 174.24.206.145 (talk) 18:40, 25 July 2011 (UTC)

It is up to the individual treaties (which I have not checked) and I don't know of any effort by the UN to harmonize or change provisions beyond what each region's countries chose in the treaties. AFAIK the 5 NWFZ treaties for inhabited areas were initiatives of the countries and their regional organization, not of the UN. --JWB (talk) 23:50, 24 February 2012 (UTC)