Since 1970, the Nuclear Non-Proliferation treaty (NPT) has been the primary mechanism for efforts to slow or prevent the spread of nuclear weapons. This agreement has been the cornerstone of a global non-proliferation regime that includes the verification mechanisms of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), unilateral as well as bilateral limits of exports and agreements on ballistic missile technology, chemical weapons, and biological agents. Most American officials, academics, and private analysts consider nonproliferation an essential pillar of U.S. foreign policy and international stability, especially after the end of the cold war. The NPT will be reconsidered in April 1995 in a review conference mandated by the treaty. The Clinton administration, as well as non-proliferation activists outside the government, have placed a high priority on the indefinite extension of the agreement.