Nordic nuclear-weapons-free zones: prospects and problems

by Richard Bitzinger

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The idea of a Nordic nuclear-weapons-free zone has been around for almost 30 years, yet proposals to establish such a zone have made no headway. The Nordic nations are aware that recently their region has grown in military and strategic importance to NATO and the Warsaw Pact, and traditional Nordic concerns for preserving the low tension and stability of the area have led the Scandinavian countries to search for new ways to protect and enhance this special security condition. This paper explores the motivations, rationales, and support behind the initiatives for a nuclear-weapons-free zone in the region and the problems that may be countered in realizing such a zone.

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