A series of lawsuits have been made against the United States and eight other countries by the Republic of the Marshall Islands. The lawsuits state that the U.S. and its nuclear peers have failed to adhere to the Nuclear Non-Proliferation treaty (NPT).
Under the treaty, the United States, Russia, China, France, and the United Kingdom or Nuclear Weapon States (NWS) must pursue general and complete disarmament. Although the four remaining countries are not parties to the NPT, they are still not permitted to posses nuclear weapons under international law. These four countries are Israel, India, Pakistan and North Korea.
The lawsuit claims that these nine countries have failed to abide by the NPT and international laws. Rather than disarming and restraining from nuclear weaponry these countries have continued to modernize and improve their weapons.
The Marshall Islands' lawsuit was filed in U.S. Federal Court and in the International Court of Justice. Rick Wayman, director of the Nuclear Age Peace Foundation said the RMI's legal teams are working pro bono. Their wish is for nuclear-armed states to, "initiate negotiations in good faith for an end to the nuclear arms race and to nuclear disarmament."
The U.S. has asked the court to dismiss the lawsuit claiming that their actions are "justifiable, and not subject to the court's jurisdiction".
An on-going petition continues to gather supporters and spread awareness.