As a treaty review conference kicked off in New York City, anti-war groups on Monday called out nuclear-armed countries—particularly the United States—for not complying with the decades-old agreement, especially as global tensions escalate.\r\n\r\n\u0022Nuclear-armed states are violating their disarmament obligations under the treaty and increasing the risk of catastrophic nuclear war.\u0022\r\n\r\nFive of the nine nations with nuclear weapons—China, France, Russia, the United Kingdom, and the United States—are parties to the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT), which entered into force in 1970. North Korea ditched the deal in 2003 and India, Israel, and Pakistan have not signed on to it.\r\n\r\nIn a joint statement Monday, CodePink and the Women\u0026#039;s International League for Peace and Freedom U.S. Section (WILPF U.S.) urged the Biden administration \u0022to remove its nuclear weapons from NATO countries and its anti-ballistic missiles from Romania and Poland, to dismantle its land-based intercontinental ballistic missiles (ICBMs), to take all nuclear-armed missiles off hair-trigger alert, and reverse course on nuclear rearmament.\u0022\r\n\r\nCodePink and WILPF U.S. demanded the declassification of the Biden administration\u0026#039;s nuclear policy document and noted that leaders use the term \u0022modernization\u0022 for arsenal updates—which the groups called \u0022a euphemism designed to disguise violations\u0022 of the NPT. They also acknowledged how Russia\u0026#039;s invasion of Ukraine and the response by the United States and other NATO nations have heightened global fears of nuclear war.\r\n\r\nWhile the pair objected to the deployment of American nuclear weapons to several nations—including Belgium, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Turkey, and the U.K.—they specifically pointed out that anti-ballistic missiles in Poland and Romania \u0022escalate the arms race, sending a message that the U.S. and its NATO allies could launch a first strike on Russia protected from retaliation.\u0022\r\n\r\n\r\n\r\n\u0022At this tenuous time, the U.S. government is engaged in a protracted proxy war with Russia,\u0022 the organizations said. \u0022We at CodePink and WILPF U.S. raise our voices in thunderous protest at this warmongering and say steps must be taken to de-escalate the crisis.\u0022\r\n\r\nThe groups blasted not only President Joe Biden and others in his administration, but also members of Congress who are backing an $839 billion military budget. As they put it: \u0022Instead of pursuing world peace and climate preservation for our children and their children, leaders of the U.S. are chasing a reckless and provocative foreign policy that pits the two most heavily armed nuclear nations, the U.S. and Russia, against each other, in an existential threat to humankind.\u0022\r\n\r\n\u0022Much as we condemn Russia\u0026#039;s horrific invasion and brutal occupation of Ukraine, we acknowledge our part in this—with U.S. and NATO provocations—and we protest our government\u0026#039;s decision to escalate the war with billions of dollars in weapons and military training rather than efforts to reach a negotiated settlement to build a new security architecture for Europe that will guarantee security to all in the region,\u0022 CodePink and WILPF U.S. added.\r\n\r\nMeanwhile, \u0022Russia is threatening to deploy new strategic systems, including a nuclear-armed torpedo,\u0022 and Russian President Vladimir Putin \u0022recently suggested he might put nuclear weapons-capable missiles and aircraft in Belarus,\u0022 the pair also highlighted. Additionally, other nuclear powers—specifically China and the U.K.—are dumping money into replacing and upgrading \u0022their deadly arsenals.\u0022\r\n\r\n\r\n\r\nThe International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons (ICAN) on Monday similarly called out multiple countries, emphasizing in a statement that the United Nations conference in NYC \u0022takes place amid a rapidly deteriorating international security environment,\u0022 with nuclear-armed nations \u0022increasing risks of use and proliferation of nuclear weapons.\u0022\r\n\r\n\u0022Russia\u0026#039;s invasion of Ukraine under cover of the threat to use nuclear weapons has fractured the NPT community, heightened the risks of nuclear weapons being used, and increased the likelihood of nuclear proliferation,\u0022 said ICAN executive director Beatrice Fihn. \u0022At the same time, all five nuclear-armed states are violating their disarmament obligations under the treaty and increasing the risk of catastrophic nuclear war.\u0022\r\n\r\n\u0022Russia\u0026#039;s nuclear threats have shown us the true nature of nuclear \u0026#039;deterrence\u0026#039;: intimidation, coercion, and facilitating illegal aggression,\u0022 she continued. \u0022This could drive other countries to consider nuclear weapons to defend themselves against nuclear-armed aggressors.\u0022\r\n\r\nICAN noted with alarm developments involving three countries that have no nukes of their own but are party to the NPT: Belarus offering to host Russian arms, and Sweden and Finland stating \u0022publicly that they now support these weapons of mass destruction as a crucial part of their security policy and would be willing to participate in using them as part of their NATO membership application.\u0022\r\n\r\n\u0022These developments are extremely dangerous and undermine confidence in the NPT as a tool for enhancing global security,\u0022 Fihn asserted, warning that \u0022if Russia or any other nuclear-armed state were to use nuclear weapons, it would have catastrophic humanitarian consequences that would harm people all over the world.\u0022\r\n\r\n\r\n\r\nFinn also flagged that \u0022since the last NPT review conference, nuclear weapons, like chemical and biological weapons, are now comprehensively prohibited by international law.\u0022\r\n\r\nICAN received the 2017 Nobel Peace Prize for its work on the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons (TPNW), which entered into force last year. While that agreement has widespread support globally, it still lacks the backing of any of the nine nuclear powers.\r\n\r\n\u0022The NPT review conference must harness the energy and build on the achievements of the TPNW,\u0022 Fihn argued. \u0022At a time where tensions between nuclear-armed states are increasing, hiding behind vague affirmations and empty promises is not enough. It\u0026#039;s time for all states to join the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons as the pathway to save the NPT.\u0022\r\n\r\nAfter opening on Monday with a stark warning from U.N. Secretary-General António Guterres that \u0022humanity is just one misunderstanding, one miscalculation, away from nuclear annihilation,\u0022 and speeches from other key leaders including U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken, the NPT\u0026#039;s 10th review conference is slated to run through August 26.