A guide to parliamentary action in support of disarmament for security and sustainable development

List of policies and parliamentary actions

1. Disarmament to save humanity

a) Nuclear Weapons

Nuclear risk reduction

  • OSCE PA declaration on détente, diplomacy and no-first-use
  • USA: No-first-use resolutions in federal and state legislatures
  • USA: Senate hearing on the authority to launch a nuclear war
  • Russia/USA: Cooperative Threat Reduction Program

Non-proliferation and arms control

  • United Kingdom: Lords Inquiry on Rising nuclear risks, disarmament and the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty, 2019
  • European Parliament Resolution on the 2020 NPT Review Conference
  • US/Russia dialogue: Russian parliamentary group for relations with the US Congress
  • USA: Hastening Arms Limitation Talks (HALT) Act 2020

Nuclear tests

  • The PTBT Amendment Conference – a novel approach to achieve the CTBT
  • French National Assembly: Advancing CTBT Entry into Force
  • Indonesia: Parliamentary visits to CTBTO
  • USA: Cutting the funding for nuclear testing – the PLANET Act
  • USA: Nuclear testing compensation legislation
  • USA: Environmental monitoring and the Runit Island nuclear waste dome

National and regional prohibitions:

  • New Zealand: Nuclear Free Zone Act 1987
  • Treaty of Tlatelolco: Latin America and the Caribbean NWFZ
  • Parliamentary statement supporting a Middle East WMD-free zone
  • Bahrain: IPU Parliamentary Group support for a Middle East Zone
  • Parliamentary statement on denuclearization of North-East Asia

Elimination and a nuclear weapons convention

  • Parliamentary resolutions supporting the NPT and a Nuclear Weapons Convention
  • IPU resolution on nuclear disarmament and the role of parliaments

Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons

  • IPU/ICAN letter to parliaments
  • Bangladesh: TPNW legislation
b) Chemical and Biological weapons
  • Nepal, Samoa, Central African Republic and Tanzania: Ratification of the BWC
  • UK: Chemical Weapons Act 1996 and destruction of stockpiles
  • European parliament resolution on the BTWC, 2006
  • PGA Campaign: Biological Weapons Convention & UN Security Council Resolution 1540
  • India: Chemical Weapons Act 2000: regional confidence building
  • Chile: Parliament action on Biological and Chemical Weapons
c) Outer Space
  • European parliament: Space and Security resolution 2008
  • New Zealand: Outer Space & High-altitude Activities Act 2017, Space launch guidelines 2019
  • USA: Space Preservation Act of 2001
  • USA: Senate draft resolution on peaceful uses of Space, 2019

2. Disarmament that saves lives

a) Conventional weapons and the arms trade
  • Global Parliamentary Declaration on the Arms Trade Treaty
  • Costa Rica: Abolition of armed forces
  • Guinea Bissau and Maldives: Ratification of the ATT
  • USA: Leahy Laws
  • USA: Congress actions on arms sales and human rights violations
  • UK parliamentary inquiry on arms exports, implementing the Arms Trade Treaty, 2018
b) Small arms and light weapons
  • Argentina: National Programme for the Voluntary Surrender of Firearms, 2006
  • Brazil: Statute of Disarmament, Law No. 10,826/03, 2003
  • PARLATINO: Regional cooperation and Model Law 2008
  • West Africa: ECOWAS Convention on Small Arms and Light Weapons, their Ammunition and other related Materials, 2006
  • Australia: National Firearms Agreement and associated legislation, 1996
  • Burkina Faso: Addressing armed violence and illicit arms trafficking
c) Inhumane weapons: Landmines, cluster munitions and explosive weapons in populated areas

Cluster Munitions

  • France: Law on the Elimination of Cluster Munitions, 2010
  • Netherlands: Regulations on divestment from the cluster munitions industry
  • Belgium: Laws banning inhumane weapons and related investments
  • European Parliament: Resolution, 2007
    USA: Cluster Munitions Civilian Protection Act, 2017


  • Bosnia-Herzegovina: Demining Law 2002 (amended 2017)
  • Ireland: Cluster Munitions And Anti-Personnel Mines Act (2008)
  • USA: Joint Congressional letter on Landmines, May 2020

Explosive weapons in populated areas

  • International Network on Explosive Weapons parliamentary appeal

3. Disarmament for future generations: fully autonomous weapons and military uses of cyberspace

  • IPU Resolution on Cyber-warfare and global security, 2015
  • European parliament: Resolution on autonomous weapons systems, September 2018
  • Parliamentary declaration supporting a treaty prohibiting fully autonomous weapons
  • OSCE Parliamentary Assembly resolution on cyber-attacks and cyber-security, 2013
  • European Cyber Diplomacy Toolbox

4. Strengthening partnerships


  • European appeal of mayors and parliamentarians, 2019


  • Bougainville peace and arms disposal agreement, 2001
  • Women legislators appeals for peace and disarmament
  • IPU policy on gender representation

Religious communities

  • Joint events with religious leaders, 2015-2017


  • IPU Youth Forum and disarmament

Disarmament Education

  • New Zealand: Disarmament education and the United Nations
  • Bahrain: Scientific Research Award on curbing WMD proliferation

Parliamentary events to commemorate UN Days

  • International day for the total elimination of nuclear weapons
  • International day against nuclear tests
  • UN Disarmament Week

UN, treaty bodies and parliamentary organisations

  • Parliamentary participation in UN and treaty-body meetings
  • IPU Annual UN Hearings
  • United Nations Associations and UNFOLD ZERO

5. Disarmament, climate protection and sustainable development

  • USA: Economic conversion, US Congress and military base closures
  • UK Parliament: Defence diversification and nuclear disarmament
  • New Zealand, Norway and Switzerland: Nuclear weapons divestment
  • USA: Smarter Approach to Nuclear Expenditure (SANE) Act, 2019
  • IPU: Launch of Move the Nuclear Weapons Money

6. Pandemics and disarmament, public health and economic sustainability

Addressing COVID-19, public health, weapons and the military

  • US Senate letter to invoke Defense Production Act of 1950
  • Thailand: Cutting military budget to liberate resources to address COVID-19 pandemic
  • Women’s appeal for human security, public health, peace & sustainable development,
  • Global weapons freeze campaign
  • United States: Defense Spending Reduction Caucus

Support for UN initiative for a global ceasefire

  • IPU joint statement
  • Bahrain: Parliamentary Group statement
  • Parliamentary Forum Small Arms and Light Weapons statement
This page is part of Assuring our Common Future, a handbook for parliamentarians.