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Citizens Inspections: Mandate
updated 05/19/10
August 6, 2003
link to: original document

Mandate for Citizens Inspections pursuant to the 1968 Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons


In accordance with International and Humanitarian Law, the 1968 Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT), including consensus agreements adopted by States Parties on May 11, 1995 and on May 24-25, 2000, as contained in documents NPT/CONF.1995/32 (Part I), and NPT/CONF.2000/28 (Part I), and the 1996 Advisory Opinion of the International Court of Justice on the legality of the threat or use of nuclear weapons, as contained in United Nations General Assembly document A/51/218 (1996), States Parties to the NPT have, among other agreements, made an unequivocal undertaking to accomplish the total elimination of their nuclear arsenals leading to nuclear disarmament. In accordance with this binding obligation, they have committed to further reductions of non-strategic nuclear weapons; a diminishing role for nuclear weapons in security policies to minimise the risk that these weapons ever be used and to facilitate the process of their total elimination; and commitments to the principles of transparency, irreversibility, verification and regular reporting. The Citizens Inspection Teams were established in accordance with these laws and associated resolutions of the United Nations General Assembly to assist States Parties in the implementation of these agreements.


The Citizens Inspection Teams shall comprise citizens of the Planet Earth, who voluntarily undertake to carry out their inspections in accordance with the principles of nonviolence and personal responsibility, in furtherance of International and Humanitarian Law and the body of treaties and agreements therein. These Citizens shall volunteer to form teams for periods determined by them, to carry out the Mandate, as described in this document. They shall do so nonviolently, without coercion or remuneration, and shall support, protect and nurture each other, taking responsibility for their own actions, safety and security, while also sharing responsibility for the actions, safety and security of the team, and for the safety and security of military and civilian personnel encountered during the course of their Inspections.

Reporting Requirements

The Citizens Inspectors are requested to submit reports to the Preparatory Committee Meetings and Review Conferences of States Parties to the NPT, in accordance with sub-paragraph 12 of paragraph 15, section on Article VI and eighth to twelfth preambular paragraphs, contained in NPT/CONF.2000/28 (Part I). The Citizens Weapons Inspectors may also be requested to brief governments and citizens groups orally or in writing, as appropriate.


The Citizens Inspection Mandate is as follows: to carry out immediate on-site inspections of NPT States Parties' nuclear weapons capabilities or involvement; to inspect declared and undeclared sites, bases and facilities suspected of harbouring nuclear weapons or related materials; to take possession for destruction, removal or rendering harmless of all nuclear weapons and related sub-systems and components and research, development, support and manufacturing facilities; and to monitor and verify States Parties' compliance with their obligations not to conduct further research, testing, development, construction, acquisition, deployment or use of new nuclear weapons or to retain nuclear weapons on their territory after May 25, 2000.

In particular, the Citizens Inspectors are to search for nuclear warheads, nuclear weapon storage sites, and delivery means for nuclear weapons, and report on the location, number, type and condition of such weapons, sites or delivery vehicles. They are to seek out documentary evidence related to nuclear weapons programmes, including training, exercise, targeting, personnel or emergency planning manuals; and evidence of continuing research, development, manufacture, production, testing, siting or deployment of nuclear weapons or of plans or intentions to use or threaten to use nuclear weapons. Information is to be gathered on the number and type of any nuclear weapons or nuclear weapon facilities; their provenance, ownership, controlling authority, condition and security measures; and the schedule for removing, dismantling, decommissioning, elimination or closure. Also centres of Command, Control, Communication and Intelligence are subject to inspections.

Citizens Inspection Rights

Taking the exchange of letters between the Secretary-General of the United Nations, the Executive Chairman of UNSCOM and the Minister for Foreign Affairs of Iraq as a template and precedent for the Citizens Inspections, for the purposes of fulfilling the Mandate, supporting all rights contained in the relevant provisions of the Convention on the Privileges and Immunities of the United Nations of 1946, and the Convention on the Privileges and Immunities of the UN Specialised Agencies of 1947. Specifically:

"Unrestricted freedom of entry and exit without delay or hindrance of personnel, property, supplies, equipment, spare parts and other items as well as means of transport, including expeditious issuance of entry and exit visas";
"Unrestricted freedom of movement without advance notice within declared and undeclared sites suspected of harbouring nuclear weapons or of collaborating in the research, development, use or deployment of nuclear weapons";

"The right to unimpeded access to any site or facility for the purpose of the on-site inspection [pursuant to the mandate] whether such a site be above or below ground .... Any number of sites, facilities or locations may be subject to inspection simultaneously";

"The right to request, receive, examine and copy any record, data or information or examine, retain, move or photograph, including videotape, any item relevant to the Citizens Inspectors' activities and to conduct interviews";

"The right to designate any suspected site for observation, inspection or other monitoring activity and for storage, destruction or rendering harmless" of nuclear weapons or nuclear weapons facilities.

"The right to install equipment or construct facilities for observation, inspection, testing or other monitoring activity and for storage, destruction or rendering harmless" of those items;

"The right to take photographs, whether from the ground or from the air, relevant to the Citizens Inspectors' activities";

"The right to take and analyse samples of any kind as well as to remove and export samples for off-site analysis"; and

"The right to unrestricted communication by telephone, radio, satellite or other forms of communication."

The civilian and military bodies responsible for the sites designated for Citizens Inspection shall

"Without prejudice, ensure the security and safety of the Citizens Weapons Inspection Teams and their personnel and belongings."

"Provide full cooperation with the Inspectors, enabling them to investigate premises and speak to personnel as necessary in fulfulment of these Inspections, without let, hindrance, arrest, detention or penalty."

Operational Activities

Operational activities will be determined by the members of each Citizens Inspection Team, in accordance with the principles of nonviolence, personal responsibility and their own decision-making procedures.

This Mandate shall be binding on the conduct of the Citizens Inspections, under International and Humanitarian Law.

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