1. U.S. Ambassador to Russia Outlines Proposals to Prevent Bioterrorism, WMD Proliferation (excerpted)
Global Security Newswire
(for personal use only)
Vershbow also called for the expansion of the Proliferation Security Initiative ï¿½ a U.S.-led effort to interdict shipments of WMD-related cargo. The United States has had ï¿½productive conversationsï¿½ with Russia on the initiative, Vershbow said, and hopes that Moscow would soon join the effort (see GSN, March 19).
While Russia agrees in ï¿½principleï¿½ with the initiative, there are still concerns as to how the effort relates to international law, Vladimir Novikov of Russiaï¿½s Institute for Strategic Studies told Global Security Newswire Wednesday. If the effort is not based in international law, he said, then any intercept operations could be seen as simply acts of piracy by nonmembers.
Russiaï¿½s close ties to countries such as China, India and Iran and a current lack of financial resources are also behind Russiaï¿½s reluctance to join, Novikov said. He said, though, that once Russiaï¿½s concerns are addressed, Moscow would likely join the effort.
ï¿½Russia doesnï¿½t want to be first, but doesnï¿½t want to be last [to join],ï¿½ Novikov said.
1. Sunken K-159 Submarine To Be Salvaged In 2005 Summer
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MOSCOW, April 27 (RIA Novosti) - The K-195 nuclear submarine, sank last August, will be salvaged in the summer of 2005, Igor Dygalo, Captain 1st Rank, aide to the naval commander-in-chief, told RIA Novosti on Tuesday.
Way back in November 2003 the Russian government allocated the first sums to start salvaging preparations, he said.
A detailed study to opt for a salvaging version has already been made and now the design is in preparation.
"Salvaging work will be over in June 2004", Dygalo said.
"Last March a contract was signed to prepare a design adapting a ship of the Northern fleet to ensure divers' work at depths down to 300 meters. The adaptation design will be over in June 2004", he said.
The State Unitary Enterprise Rosoboronexport is looking into the purchase and supply of ship-raising means and mechanisms. "The Titov rescue ship of the Northern fleet has already been additionally equipped for work under the design", Dygalo said. With timely financing for all preparatory work, the salvaging operation and towing of the K-159 to the dismembering site will be done as planned in June-August of next year.
The discarded nuclear submarine K-159 was in tow to the city of Polyarny for utilisation. Its nuclear reactor had been rendered safe and the ammunition offloaded. Towing, with the help of four pontoons, to the ship-repair factory began on August 28. The pontoons broke off during a storm at about 04:00, Moscow time, on August 30 three miles off the Kildin island in the Barents sea at a 170-meter depth. Nine of the ten members of the mooring crew died, one was rescued.
1. Probe Notes Lapses In Chemical Arms Disclosures
The Washington Times
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Russia, China and Iran have failed to fully disclose details of their chemical weapons programs and arsenals that are to be destroyed under a 1997 treaty, raising proliferation risks, according to a congressional report.
Russia also is working on new chemical weapons that may circumvent the Chemical Weapons Convention (CWC), according to an investigation by Congress' General Accounting Office.
The report revealed that many of the 161 signatories to the convention, including Russia and the United States, will not meet a treaty deadline of 2012 for destroying all chemical weapons, such as nerve, blister and blood agents.
The report, to be made public this week and obtained by The Washington Times, was produced for Rep. Duncan Hunter, California Republican and chairman of the House Armed Services Committee.
Russia has failed to provide full details of its chemical agent and weapons inventory as required by the treaty, which mandates complete disclosures of production and development facilities and chemical agent and weapons stocks.
Without elaborating, the report added that Russia is thought to be working on "a new generation of agents that could circumvent the CWC and possibly defeat western detection and protection systems."
U.S. intelligence officials think that the threat of terrorists obtaining chemical weapons is growing.
"The lack of a credible Russian chemical weapons destruction plan has hindered and may further delay destruction efforts, leaving Russia's vast chemical weapons arsenal vulnerable to theft or diversion," the GAO stated.
The report said China "maintains an active chemical weapons research and development program, a possible undeclared chemical weapons stockpile, and weapons-related facilities that were not declared."
Iran also failed to provide accurate information on its chemical arms and "is seeking to retain and modernize key elements of its chemical weapons program," and Sudan has a program to develop chemical weapons indigenously, said the report, which credited the State Department with the information on the covert chemical arms activities.
The GAO noted that the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons, which is in charge of monitoring the treaty implementation, has had problems in conducting inspections at military and civilian chemical facilities.
Mr. Hunter said Moscow is abusing assistance in eliminating chemical weapons.
"The facility we have built them is sufficient to destroy their entire nerve gas stockpile," he said. "Instead, they look at the plant and see the large number of jobs it created. Some Russians keep arguing that U.S. taxpayers should duplicate the plant in other locations around Russia."
Russia has been offered $585 million for chemical destruction from the United States, Germany and other nations, the reports said.
As of September, Russia had one operational destruction facility and had destroyed 1.1 percent of its 40,000 metric tons of chemical weapons. The United States has destroyed 25 percent of its chemical arms, said the report, noting that Russia and the United States hold more than 95 percent of the world's declared stocks.
Less than 40 percent of the signatories to the convention have passed laws that criminalize chemical weapons activities, the report said.
1. Kazakhstan Building Reprocessing Plant For Fast Neutron Reactorsï¿½ Liquid Coolant
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On March 4, the foundation of the liquid coolant reprocessing plant was laid down in Aktau, Kazakhstan today reports.
The plant will reprocess liquid coolant of the BN-350 type reactor in the frames of US State Department Program (NDF) on non-proliferation. The US sponsors the whole $3m project. The plantï¿½s facility should reprocess 1,300 tonne of liquid natrium into alkali. The construction is to be completed by the end of 2004, while the operation is scheduled for April or May 2005. The first BN-350 type fast neutron reactor is being taken out of service in Kazakhstan now, Kazakhstan today reports.
1. United States Supports Expansion of G-8 Nonproliferation Effort, Officials Say
Global Security Newswire
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MOSCOW ï¿½ The United States is working to expand an effort conducted by the Group of Eight global economic powers to fund nonproliferation projects in Russia to include both new donor countries and new aid recipients, senior U.S. officials said last week (see GSN, April 26).
During a 2002 summit in Canada, the G-8 members ï¿½ Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Russia, the United Kingdom and the United States ï¿½ initiated the Global Partnership Against the Spread of Weapons and Materials of Mass Destruction. Under the effort, the G-8 members pledged $20 billion over 10 years to fund nonproliferation projects starting in Russia. Since the 2002 summit, the effort has expanded to include several non-G-8 donor countries, including the Czech Republic, Finland, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Sweden, Switzerland as well as the European Union.
In advance of the June G-8 summit in the United States, Washington has worked to add eight countries to the Global Partnership, a senior U.S. State Department official said during a nonproliferation conference held here last week by the PIR Center. New donor members could include Australia, New Zealand and South Korea, said Edward Vazquez, director of the Office of Proliferation Threat Reduction in the State Departmentï¿½s Bureau of Nonproliferation.
While Russia would continue to remain the ï¿½priorityï¿½ of the partnershipï¿½s efforts, the United States believes ï¿½the time is rightï¿½ to expand the effort to include nonproliferation-related projects in other nations, such as other states of the former Soviet Union, Vazquez said. He said the United States would like to see the former Soviet states of Georgia, Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan be invited to take part in the effort as recipients.
During a keynote address last week at the conference, U.S. Ambassador to Russia Alexander Vershbow also emphasized the U.S. desire to expand the Global Partnership to include new recipient nations. He added that Ukraine was ï¿½a natural choiceï¿½ to next receive funding for nonproliferation.
ï¿½Russia will remain our priority, and widening the circle of recipient countries will not diminish or dilute Global Partnership efforts under way in Russia. Yet we believe that a global problem requires an appropriately global approach,ï¿½ Vershbow said.
Concerns Over Current Status of Global Partnership
While the United States is considering the possible expansion of the Global Partnership, there are concerns that the original aims of the project have not yet been reached. During the conference last week, PIR Center Director Vladimir Orlov said that in the past two years Russia had only received about $50 million in working funds for nonproliferation. At that rate, he said, it would take decades to meet the original 2002 goal (see GSN, Nov. 14, 2003).
In addition, a number of issues have delayed various nonproliferation projects being conducted in Russia, according to participants at last weekï¿½s conference. For example, a long-standing dispute between the United States and Russia over establishing U.S. liability protection for damages and injuries that may result from nonproliferation activities has hindered progress, said Robert Einhorn, a senior adviser with the Center for Strategic and International Studies. The issue of liability protection has delayed U.S. and Russian efforts to eliminate a total of almost 70 tons of weapon-grade plutonium, enough to create 8,000 nuclear weapons, said Meggen Watt of the U.S. State Department Office of the Fissile Material Negotiator. Einhorn added that the dispute has not yet received the presidential-level attention needed to resolve the impasse (see GSN, March 11).
Another concern is Russiaï¿½s reluctance to provide full site access to U.S. contractors engaged in nonproliferation projects, according to Rear Adm. John Byrd, head of the Cooperative Threat Reduction directorate of the U.S. Defense Threat Reduction Agency. Such a lack of access has delayed U.S. efforts to improve security at Russian nuclear facilities, he said last week.
Russia is also concerned that some Global Partnership members want to ï¿½reshuffleï¿½ the effortï¿½s priorities, said Mikhail Lysenko, director of the Russian Foreign Ministryï¿½s Department for Security Affairs and Disarmament. Currently, most Global Partnership-aided projects in Russia focus on the two main priorities identified by Moscow ï¿½ nuclear submarine dismantlement and chemical weapons disposal. Efforts in those two areas, though, have also experienced difficulties, according to conference participants.
Russia ï¿½badly needsï¿½ international aid to help dismantle nearly 200 decommissioned submarines that contain spent nuclear fuel that could be attractive to terrorists seeking to develop crude nuclear or radiological weapons, according to Sergei Antipov, a senior Russian atomic energy official. ï¿½Weï¿½re craving it,ï¿½ Antipov said last week, referring to foreign assistance (see GSN, April 14).
Antipov also said that partnership members are focusing too much on providing assistance in dismantling decommissioned submarines based in northwestern Russia and not enough on those on Russiaï¿½s eastern coast. Submarines there could be more easily accessed and thus more attractive to terrorists than those based on Russiaï¿½s Kola Peninsula, said Christina Chuen of the Monterey Institute of International Studiesï¿½ Center for Nonproliferation Studies.
There are also concerns about the progress of constructing a chemical weapons disposal facility near the Russian town of Shchuchye. Canadian Ambassador to Russia Christopher Westdal said last week that a ï¿½procedural impasseï¿½ has resulted in the delay of a Canadian project to construct a rail spur at the site to transport chemical weapons agents from storage facilities to the planned destruction plant. He added, though, that he was ï¿½optimisticï¿½ that the dispute would soon be resolved.
While Russia has made substantial progress in its chemical weapons disposal efforts over the past several years, concerns still remain as to lack of a clear overall plan and a lack of transparency in the progress, said James Harrison, deputy director of counterproliferation and arms control in the British Defense Ministry. He last week also blamed the uncertain nature of U.S. funding for the Shchuchye project both for delays in the disposal plantï¿½s construction and for Russiaï¿½s overall chemical weapons disposal efforts (see GSN, Jan. 23). Speaking today in Washington, nonproliferation experts were divided as to whether now is the right time to consider expanding the Global Partnership to include projects beyond Russia. Einhorn told Global Security Newswire that despite funding concerns, the partnership should have the necessary resources to conduct projects both within Russia and outside, noting that expenditures for projects outside Russia should be less expensive. In addition, he said, now that the United States has taken the position that the partnershipï¿½s original $20 billion pledge reflected a ï¿½floor, not a ceiling,ï¿½ it should be easier to obtain increased resources.
For its part, though, Russian opposition may slow down efforts to expand the effort, Einhorn said. He said that Moscow views nonproliferation funding as a ï¿½zero-sum gameï¿½ ï¿½ every dollar spent on projects somewhere else is one less for Russian efforts.
It is important to first fulfill the original intent of the Global Partnership ï¿½ securing $20 billion in nonproliferation funding for Russia by 2012 ï¿½ before considering an expansion of the effort, said Raphael Della Ratta of the Russian-American Nuclear Security Advisory Council. Once that goal is reached, though, ï¿½then make it global in more ways than one,ï¿½ he said.
MOSCOW -- In 2002, the United States and other leading industrial nations announced ''a global partnership against the spread of weapons and materials of mass destruction" and with it, an unprecedented $20 billion pledge to help Russia prevent its nuclear, chemical, and biological materials from falling into the hands of terrorists.
Two years later, tons of lethal Russian stockpiles remain as vulnerable as ever, and the global partnership is in danger of collapse, Russian and Western weapons specialists warn.
Only a fraction of the funding pledged by the Group of Eight nations in June 2002 has materialized, the specialists said over the weekend. Much of the money has been held up by legal disputes, bureaucratic hang-ups, Russia's reluctance to allow access to sensitive sites, and public resistance in Russia to cooperation with the United States and the West.
As a result, Russians, many of whom think Western assistance in securing and eliminating weapons of mass destruction is just a pretext for spying, are considering doing without the aid.
''The partnership is on the verge of a breakup," said Vladimir Orlov, a nonproliferation specialist at the Center for Policy Studies in Moscow. ''It is high time for Russia to start thinking about how to get off the habit of dependence on donors."
The trouble is how to pay for the security upgrades that Orlov said are required immediately at some 30 highly vulnerable nuclear sites across Russia. Other facilities containing as much as 600 tons of weapons-grade plutonium and uranium are protected ''by little more than a chain-link fence and a guard," said Laura Holgate of the Nuclear Threat Initiative, a US group dedicated to securing the former Soviet nuclear arsenal.
Russia has said it cannot pay for these upgrades alone, despite President Vladimir V. Putin's statement at the G-8 summit in 2002 that terrorists armed with weapons of mass destruction are ''the main security threat of the 21st century." The G-8 responded by pledging to contribute $20 billion over 10 years.
But Orlov said that in the first two years only $48 million has been spent in Russia.
''We cannot put off upgrades to physical security," Orlov said a Moscow conference aimed at raising the issue before G-8 leaders meet next month in Sea Island, Ga. ''Terrorists don't think in terms of 10-year programs."
Terrorist networks were seeking out ''facilities with lower levels of security," Orlov said. Two years ago, Chechen rebel fighters were discovered spying on supposedly top-secret nuclear sites.
Moscow and Washington link Chechen separatists to Al Qaeda, and rebel leaders have warned that they might attack a nuclear facility. Two years ago 41 heavily armed Chechens were able to seize a Moscow theater -- a force that could easily overwhelm any of Russia's remote and poorly protected nuclear sites, said Maxim Shingarkin, a former major in the force that guards Russia's strategic arsenal.
Since 1992, Washington has spent more than $7 billion to secure nuclear materials and destroy thousands of missiles in the former USSR. The G-8 partnership was intended to broaden efforts and let leading European nations and Japan accept a share of the burden.
But of the $200 million Japan pledged, it has provided less than $2 million, Orlov said. France, which promised $750 million, has yet to donate any money.
Alain Mathiot of France's Atomic Energy Commission said ''if 2003 was the time of thinking, for us 2004 will be the time of action."
British funding to help build a Siberian chemical weapons destruction facility, which Russia needs to eliminate its 40,000-ton arsenal, cannot begin until disputes that have held back US funding are resolved, said James Harrison of the British Defense Ministry.
A $25 million Canadian project to build an 11-mile railway to carry chemical weapons to the same facility has been on hold for five months over ''a procedural impasse" with Moscow, said Canada's ambassador, Christopher Westdal. Russia's inability to deliver ''extensive information" about project sites is holding up Canada's overall $750 million contribution.
A dispute over whether Russia should protect Washington from liability in the unlikely event of sabotage by a US worker has stalled programs to dispose of 34 tons of weapons-grade plutonium for four years.
''Bureaucracy -- not a shortage of resources -- is thwarting attempts to reduce the spread of weapons of mass destruction," Holgate said.
Disputes over access to sites have delayed the installment of half of the security upgrades the United States has pledged to implement at Russian nuclear facilities. As a result, multilayer fencing and intrusion detectors intended for dozens of sites have been lying in warehouses since they were delivered to Russia four years ago.
''It's essential, at the outset of a project, for the host nation to be completely open and tell us about the full scope of the project," said Rear Admiral John Byrd, head of the US Defense Threat Reduction Agency. ''Revealing these details has not always been the case."
Moscow has also been reluctant to open its military sites to US visitors unless Washington permits equal access for the Russians, said Colonel General Yevgeny Maslin, who from 1991 to 1997 commanded Russia's strategic arsenal.
The sides are seeking a compromise under which US contractors would designate a trusted Russian firm to represent it at sensitive sites.
But choosing Russian subcontractors can be tricky. A US-funded project to transport SS-18 ''Satan" intercontinental ballistic missiles to a dismantling facility that was to begin yesterday has been delayed ''because the firm that got the contract is simply incapable of doing this kind of work," said Nikolai Shumkov of the Russian Aviation and Space Agency.
The use of Russian subcontractors has not eliminated suspicions that US aid in Russian disarmament is somehow intended to harm, not help.
''There is public opinion, environmental activists, . . . and especially politicians, who play up these concerns, saying, 'They are shipping who-knows-what from America, something that Americans aren't using at home but are giving to us,' " Shumkov said.
Public protests halted US funding for a program to dispose of rocket fuel, he said. Similar concerns have held up the construction of chemical weapons destruction sites.
''Half the people think this is all a plan to spy on Russian sites," Holgate said.
Security concerns have led Russia to ban donor countries from sharing any information they obtain about Russian military sites.
But this has sometimes led to donor countries weakening one another's projects, Holgate said.
In one recent case, Russia wanted the United States to build a fence around a nuclear facility, but could not guard the barrier around the clock. The United States refused, saying an unguarded fence could provide shelter for possible attackers. Another donor country, unaware of the US concerns, built the fence.
''Now, as a result, you might have a reduction in physical security," Holgate said.
MOSCOW, April 23 (Itar-Tass) - G-8 states should allocate real money to Russia for eliminating its weapons of mass destruction, instead of making declarative statements about it, director of the PIR-Center of Political Studies Vladimir Orlov said on Friday as he opened an international conference over global partnership between G-8 countries against the proliferation of weapons and materials of mass destruction.
Orlov said the G-8, at is previous meeting in Kananaskis, Canada, had decided to allocate Russia 20 billion dollars for eliminating weapons of mass destruction and their delivery vehicles.
However, until now, G-8 states have transferred to Russia just 50 million dollars of this sum, while some states have not given a single cent, according to the director.
If the funding proceeds at such a rate, Russia' will require 40 years to eliminate its weapons of mass destruction, Orlov said.
The meeting in which 276 top experts from 21 countries are taking part, is expected to work out recommendations for the G-8 summit, concerning implementation of the global partnership program. The summit is due to open in the United States in six weeks.
Amitai Etzioni teaches sociology at George Washington University. His book "From Empire to Community: A New Approach to International Relations" (Palgrave) will be published in May.
Probing the past won't do. The gravest threat is nuclear attack.
Fast-forward three years. A bipartisan commission is conducting hearings in Washington to determine why we were asleep at the wheel when terrorists set off a nuclear device in one of our major cities. The attack killed 300,000. It shook the nation's confidence so profoundly that the Constitution was "temporarily" suspended; all civil liberties were waived to prevent future attacks.
The new commission has established that one of the reasons we failed to prevent this tragedy was the impact of an earlier commission and an earlier set of hearings: the National Commission on Terrorist Attacks Upon the United States, a.k.a. the 9/11 commission.
The problem was that the 9/11 investigation spent too much time assigning blame and looking backward. When it came to recommending safeguards for the future, it encouraged the public, federal agencies and the White House to plan for the kinds of attacks we had faced in the past rather than foreseeing dangers to come. It unwittingly contributed to a malaise that military historians have long studied: fighting the last war rather than preparing for the next one.
Could a mere congressional commission really have such a long-reaching effect? Indeed. A similar set of hearings spelled the end of the McCarthy era. Another drove Richard Nixon out of office and led to campaign finance reform. And the Church Commission, which found that the FBI improperly spied on domestic dissenters during the 1960s, strengthened the wall between the FBI and the CIA ï¿½ the same wall that is now under attack for its role in our 9/11 failures.
Consider the buzz emerging from the 9/11 commission now. In reaction to our intelligence miscues, it's pushing public opinion toward approving something like an American MI5, a domestic spying agency similar to Britain's. By highlighting Bush's inattention to terrorism before Sept. 11, it is no doubt abetting an administration desire to recoup politically by dispatching Osama Bin Laden before the elections. These actions might have merit, but they don't block the gravest of the foreseeable dangers posed by terrorism ï¿½ nuclear weapons.
In much the same way, our current anti-terrorist strategies also miss the point. Because airplanes were the previous weapon of choice, we've earmarked $5.17 billion in 2005 (out of $5.3 billion budgeted for the Transportation Security Administration) for airports. Now that trains have been attacked in Madrid, we are moving to better protect the rails. But we seem to ignore that Al Qaeda rarely attacks twice in the same way or in the same place.
We're also spending billions trying to eliminate terrorists ï¿½ in Afghanistan, in the Philippines and Indonesia, in Colombia and in Europe ï¿½ before they can hit us. This could be effective, but it is also exceedingly difficult. Terrorists are mobile, hidden and often protected by local populations. And there seems to be an unending supply of fresh recruits for every cell we take out.
As for preventing terrorists from getting their hands on nuclear weapons, it's a strategy that by comparison gets little attention and few resources. Approximately $1 billion is set aside for the purpose, just one-fifth of what we're spending to find shoe bombs, box cutters and nail clippers at airports. (Eliminating chemical and biological weapons is also important but less so, because those agents are much more difficult to weaponize and employ than nuclear material.)
Yet the nuclear threat can be met. The number of nuclear devices floating around on the black market is limited. The number of sites where they are poorly protected is small and well known. The list of experts who might illicitly develop nuclear weapons is relatively short.
The 9/11 commission, which is charged not just with investigating the past but preparing us for the future, should fix this strategic imbalance. It should recommend a substantial budget increase for the Nunn-Lugar Cooperative Threat Reduction Program, which provides for the supervised destruction of nuclear weapons, the removal of "loose" plutonium from global circulation, and alternative training and employment of nuclear weapons scientists.
It should also recommend an increased commitment to the administration's Proliferation Security Initiative, a set of international agreements that allows the United States and its allies to search planes and ships that are suspected of carrying nuclear weapons and material. And finally, it should call for the creation of a special center for coordinating intelligence concerning nuclear attacks so that it will not be lost among the endless streams of other information about terrorists.
1. A Farewell To Arms; Center To Retrain More Of World's Weapons Experts
Atlanta Journal and Constitution
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A little-known program inspired by former U.S. Sen. Sam Nunn to find peaceful jobs for Russia's thousands of former weapons scientists has been so successful that plans are afoot to expand it to redirect the skills of former weapons experts in Libya and Iraq.
This year marks the 10th anniversary of the original program for Russian scientists.
In March 1994, with funding from the United States and its partners in the European Union and Japan, the International Science and Technology Center opened its doors in Moscow.
It was a massive undertaking. The challenges were not only logistical, cultural and technical, but diplomatic and political. It was to be a new model of international cooperation in nonproliferation and world security --- yet its tasks were urgent. The needs it served were strategically important in preventing chemical, biological and nuclear weapon capabilities from falling into the hands of rogue states and terrorists, and at the same time were intensely human. These were good scientists, whose careers and lives had suddenly been turned upside down.
The center's work is still little-known to the general public. Yet it has arguably become one of the most successful and least contentious of this country's many international interventions.
It has provided funding for more than 50,000 former weapons scientists to work in fields such as biotechnology and the life sciences, energy and the environment.
Their work has been done for government agencies around the world (including the U.S. Department of Agriculture, the Department of Energy and the Environmental Protection Agency), for national labs and other scientific organizations in this and other countries, and for multinational corporations that look to the center to help them identify qualified scientists for specific projects at some 700 research centers throughout Russia and the former Soviet republics.
In Kazakhstan, with the help of EPA scientists, a former Soviet biological weapons laboratory has been turned into an environmental monitoring lab. In the process, 33 former biological weapons scientists were retrained to work on reducing threats from bioterrorism.
It has been an important 10 years, a tribute not only to the dedication and leadership of those directly involved, but also to Nunn and Sen. Richard Lugar (R-Ind.), who authored the Nunn-Lugar cooperative threat reduction program of 1991 from which the idea for the center evolved. It is also a testament to the U.S. State Department, which has had, and still has, the primary governmental responsibility for managing the program.
Altogether, the center has launched and arranged funding for more than 2,000 public and private research projects.
Canada, Norway and South Korea have joined the original group of countries in helping to fund the center's activities. And funding from partner companies for specific projects will soon exceed contributions from governments.
The center is a groundbreaking success story on many levels, from the human and scientific to the corporate and diplomatic. It has already been responsible for a number of inventions from which we all benefit, including new defenses against various forms of terrorism. The program's expansion to include the former weapons scientists of Libya and Iraq could lead to further important breakthroughs.
To Nunn and Lugar we all owe a debt of thanks for farsightedness and determination.
Gilbert A. Robinson was deputy director of the United States Information Agency and the first director of the Office of Public Diplomacy in the State Department.
1. Current and Former Russian Officials Criticize Efforts to Prevent Missile Proliferation
Global Security Newswire
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MOSCOW ï¿½ Current and former senior Russian officials last week criticized two international agreements that seek to prevent the spread of ballistic missiles, and they called for expanded and more binding measures (see GSN, Feb. 26).
While there are international treaties to prevent the proliferation of nuclear, biological and chemical weapons, there are only two lesser agreements that deal with ballistic missile proliferation. The Missile Technology Control Regime is an informal 33-nation group that agrees to implement similar export controls on missile technology. The 2002 Hague Code of Conduct Against Ballistic Missile Proliferation calls on more than 100 participating nations to exercise ï¿½maximum possible restraintï¿½ in developing and deploying ballistic missiles and to avoid aiding the ballistic missile programs of any countries that might be developing weapons of mass destruction (see GSN, July 2, 2003).
In remarks before a two-day nonproliferation conference held in Moscow last week by the PIR Center, former Russian Defense Minister Igor Sergeyev criticized the MTCR for failing to prevent what he called the growing spread of ballistic missiles. Addressing the conference Friday, Sergeyev said the regime did not have enough members and lacked adequate verification measures to be effective in preventing missile proliferation.
While praising the Code of Conduct as an important ï¿½first step,ï¿½ a legally binding international treaty to prevent missile proliferation is still needed to help close remaining ï¿½loopholes,ï¿½ Oleg Skabara, head of the Russian Defense Ministryï¿½s Main Directorate for International Military Cooperation, said during the conference Saturday. Skabara criticized the code for failing to offer incentives to encourage countries to give up missile proliferation activities. Such a lack of incentives has resulted in a number of countries of concern, such as China, India, Israel and North Korea, refusing to join the code, he said.
When Russia joined the code in 2002, it viewed the agreement as a ï¿½first stepï¿½ toward the creation of an international missile treaty, Skabara said.
A U.S. State Department official in Washington told Global Security Newswire today, though, that instituting a missile proliferation treaty would require developing a negotiable, verifiable treaty to stem missile proliferation while allowing legitimate activities. ï¿½Thatï¿½s a pretty tall order,ï¿½ the official said, adding that the Hague Code of Conduct was created, in part, because it was achievable.
Some U.S. experts in Washington today agreed with some of the Russian criticisms. Arms Control Association Research Director Wade Boese told GSN that the United States has been opposed to an outright missile ban on the view that such weapons are indeed legitimate. In addition, Bush administration officials have typically shied away from any international agreement seen as ï¿½tying their hands,ï¿½ he said.
He also agreed with Sergeyevï¿½s criticisms that the MTCR lacks enough members to be truly effective. More and more countries such as India and Pakistan, Boese said, are developing the capability to become ballistic missile producers and therefore a need exists to bring these countries into the supplier-based system of the regime.
Some of Russiaï¿½s criticisms of the regime, though, may also be ï¿½market driven,ï¿½ Boese said, noting that Russia also likely wants to prevent non-MTCR countries from engaging in the types of missile sales it is prohibited from dealing as a regime member.
1. Iran Ready To Cooperate With Russia In Bushehr NPP Second Unit Construction
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TEHRAN, April 27 (RIA Novosti) - Vahid Ahmadi, deputy head of Iran's Atomic Energy Organization, confirmed the Islamic Republic's readiness to cooperate with Russia in the construction of the second unit of the Bushehr nuclear power plant.
"The program of construction of the second unit is worked out and will be implemented in cooperation with Russia," Mr. Ahmadi said Tuesday in the framework of the Iran's Atomic Energy international conference that opened in Shiraz (south of Iran).
Stressing the peaceful orientation of the country's nuclear programs, the deputy head of the Iranian Atomic Energy Organization said: "Tehran will welcome the participation of western states in developing the Islamic Republic's atomic energy industry." In Mr. Ahmadi's words, "with account for the intentions to build several nuclear power plants and use peaceful atom in the economic, medical, agricultural and other spheres, Iran needs advanced technologies on peaceful atom development." The Shiraz conference's main aims are consideration of different projects and trends of using the peaceful atom in the energy, economic, ecological and national economy spheres. An exposition of achievements of the peaceful nuclear industry is held as part of the forum; documentaries on peaceful atom development will be shown.
Over 900 scientists, experts and engineers from 17 countries are taking part in the conference, which will close on April 30.
2. U.S. Sanctions of Russian Firms Criticized in Moscow
Global Security Newswire
(for personal use only)
MOSCOW ï¿½ A former Russian arms control official Saturday criticized as unfair a recent U.S. decision to impose sanctions against Russian entities for allegedly aiding Iranï¿½s WMD and ballistic missile efforts (see GSN, April 5).
Earlier this month, the United States issued sanctions against the Baranov Engine Building Association Overhaul Facility and Russian national Vadim Vorobey for violating the Iran Nonproliferation Act of 2002. The two were among 13 entities sanctioned for violating the act because there was ï¿½credible information indicating that these companies had transferred to Iran, since Jan. 1, 1999,ï¿½ equipment and technologies ï¿½with the potential of making a material contribution to proscribed programs,ï¿½ a U.S. State Department spokesman said April 2.
In remarks Saturday before a nonproliferation conference held here by the PIR Center, Lt. Gen. Gennady Evstafiev said that the United States has not imposed sanctions on Pakistan for the activities of top nuclear scientist Abdul Qadeer Khan, who confessed to transferring Pakistani nuclear technology to Iran, Libya and North Korea through a vast international network.
Agence France-Presse reported earlier this month that U.S. officials said that much of the activities of the sanctioned entities were discovered through the investigation into the nuclear network headed by Khan.
The United States has argued that Khan acted on his own without government approval (see GSN, March 31).
Evstafiev also complained Saturday that there has yet been no action to bring Khan before the International Criminal Court in The Hague, adding that Khanï¿½s activities would constitute a major contribution to allowing terrorists to potentially obtain nuclear weapons.
3. Russian Official Describe Iran's Nuclear Program As Peaceful
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MOSCOW (IRNA) -- A Russian nuclear official said here that the Islamic Republic of Iran's nuclear program is quite peaceful.
Iran, or any other country for that matter, is entitled to use its peaceful nuclear programs for economic development, declared Russian atomic weapon and security expert General Yevgeni Maslin in an exclusive interview with IRNA on Friday.
Speaking on the sidelines of international conference titled Global Partnership Against Weapons and Materials of Mass Destruction, (WMD), Maslin added that Bushehr power plant does not pose any threat and is not contrary to the issue of banning WMD since the plant is not meant to develop weapons.
The Islamic Republic of Iran conducts its nuclear program in accordance with international regulations, he added.
"There is constructive cooperation between Iran and the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) as has been confirmed by the agency," the official stressed.
The Russian Federation should continue its nuclear cooperation with countries throughout the world, including Iran, he declared. Maslin recalled, "On the sidelines of the meeting, I pointed out to the American partners that the situation has changed today. Each country has its own views. So, you should not politicize Iran's economic programs."
Protecting scientists who enjoy valuable nuclear experiences is the most important duty of authorities and atomic powers, Maslin concluded.
1. Launch Of Russia Military Satellite Postponed Indefinitely
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MOSCOW, April 26 (Itar-Tass) - The launch of a Zenith-2 booster rocket with a military satellite from the Baikonur cosmodrome has been postponed indefinitely, a spokesman at the press service of the Russian Space Troops told Itar-Tass on Monday.
The launch of the rocket, which was to deliver in orbit a Kosmos satellite, has been delayed for the third time.
2. Russia On Verge Of Placing New-Age Mobile ICBMs Into Use: Minister
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MOSCOW (AFP) Apr 26, 2004 Russia next week will test-launch another mobile Topol-M intercontinental ballistic missile, perhaps the last one before putting it into use, Defense Minister Sergei Ivanov said Monday.
The 47-tonne missile, which carries one nuclear warhead, is seen by Russia as a future backbone to its nuclear defenses. It compares to the US-built Minuteman-3.
Yury Solomonov, who heads the Moscow Institute of Technology that constructed the missile, said its mobile version could become operational by 2006, ITAR-TASS reported.
Russia already has ground-based Topol-M rockets on standby.
The last test of the mobile missile was accomplished last week, with it traveling its maximum distance of 11,500 kilometers (6,900 miles) before hitting a target on the Kamchatka peninsula.
"The test was successful," the Russian defense minister said in televised comments, reporting the mission's progress to President Vladimir Putin.
"We have one more test, after which point we can reach a decision on utilizing this weapon," Ivanov said.
Russia and the United States signed the "Moscow Treaty" in May 2002 that obliged both countries to slash their nuclear arsenals by two-thirds over the next 10 years.
But Washington has since issued strong hints that it may use a loophole to abandon the treaty, and Russia has staged a series of test launches of ICBMs in recent months.
3. Russia To Make New Try At Launching Military Satellite
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MOSCOW (AFP) Apr 26, 2004 Russia was on Monday to make a new attempt to launch one of its Kosmos military communications satellites from a base in Kazakhstan, the Russian military space service said.
The launch, to be made atop a Ukrainian-built Zenit-2 rocket, had originally been due to take place in late March, and then on Sunday, but both firings were postponed.
Russian officials said the latest delay, like the earlier one, was due to technical problems with the Zenit-2, which was the last and most advanced space rocket built by the Soviet Union before it collapsed in the early 1990s.
The new launch time was set for 1042 GMT on Monday from the Baikonur space centre in Kazakstan, officials said.
1. Volgodonsk NPP To Be Stopped For 45 Days Of Planned Repairs
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ROSTOV-ON-DON, April 27 (Itar-Tass) -- The Volgodonsk nuclear power plant in the Russian Rostov region will be stopped for 45 days of planned repairs on May 1, a source in the power plantï¿½s information and analytical center told Prime Tass on Tuesday.
Russian nuclear power plants have planned repairs each year to detect possible defects and modernize equipment.
Some of the nuclear fuel will be unloaded from the Volgodonsk nuclear power plant reactor during repairs. A total of 1,100 specialists from 40 organizations will take part in the repairs.
The only unit of the Volgodonsk nuclear power plant was connected to the Russian unified energy system in March 2001. It has produced 21,851.4 million kilowatt/hours of electricity.
Russia may sell a stake in Rosenergoatom, the state-owned nuclear power monopoly, to private investors to raise the company's efficiency and help spur the nuclear industry's development, Interfax reported, citing Alexander Rumyantsev, head of the Federal Atomic Energy Agency.
"I don't see anything bad in selling from 20 percent to 24 percent of Rosenergoatom to a private investor for $10 billion," Rumyantsev was quoted as saying by Interfax. "The nuclear power industry needs to be privatized and attract private capital."
Russia needs to merge its nuclear power plants into Rosenergoatom's assets before it could sell a stake in the company, Rumyantsev said. Russia has 30 nuclear reactors and 10 nuclear power stations, Interfax reported.
Rosenergoatom may invest as much as $47 billion to double its output by 2020, the Atomic Energy Agency said earlier this month. The company's annual borrowings total 11 billion rubles ($380 million), Interfax reported.
3. Russia Remains Leader In Vital Segments Of Nuclear Power Industry
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MOSCOW, April 24 (RIA Novosti) -Russia retains leading positions in vital segments of the nuclear power industry, Alexander Rumyantsev, head of the Federal Nuclear Power Service, said in an interview with the Mayak radio station on Saturday.
Among other things, he said that Russia continues to keep leading positions in technologies of uranium enrichment and isotope recovery.
Russia also remains a leader in military nuclear technologies. Furthermore, according to Mr. Rumyantsev, all Russian projects concerning construction of nuclear power plants are fully in line with contemporary world standards.
Head of the Federal Nuclear Power Service also said that over the past decade a number of countries have been jointly developing an international program for construction of an experimental thermonuclear reactor. Russia plays the leading role in the ongoing thermonuclear research conducted in cooperation with the USA, European Union, Japan, South Korea and China. At present, Alexander Rumyantsev said, "difficult talks" are underway as to the location of the world's first thermonuclear reactor. Two sites are currently under consideration - one in Japan and the other in France, he noted.
Alexander Rumyantsev also reminded the audience that Russia had long ago successfully accomplished all R&D work for construction of floating nuclear power plants. Inadequate funding, however, hampers implementation of this far-reaching project, head of the Federal Nuclear Power Service said.
1. PRESS RELEASE On UN Security Council Meeting Held to Discuss Nonproliferation of Weapons of Mass Destruction
Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation Daily News Bulletin
(for personal use only)
A broad debate took place on April 22 at a formal meeting of the UN Security Council that attracted more than 50 states on a draft resolution submitted by Russia jointly with the US and a number of other countries on the fight against the threat of non-state actors getting weapons of mass destruction (WMDs), primarily for terrorist purposes.
In the course of the meeting most states expressed their vigorous support to the document, appropriately put forward by Russia and the other cosponsors at this time. The draft resolution is a specific move on the road of implementing the initiative sounded by President of the Russian Federation Vladimir Putin at the 58th session of the UN General Assembly.
The tragic events of September 11, 2001, as well as the acts of terrorism in Moscow, Madrid, Tokyo and a number of other cities of the world show that the problem of nonproliferation of WMDs and the means to deliver them is becoming a major threat to international peace and security. It is important that the positive response to the Russian initiative reflects the world community's growing comprehension of the need to wage the struggle against the threat of proliferation on a collective basis and in strict accordance with the rules of international law.
This is the exact aim of the draft resolution proposed for consideration. Its task is to ensure a coordinated drive against black markets of WMDs and the related technologies and materials. The document is meant to supplement, not replace the existing nonproliferation mechanisms, and to lay a legal and operational framework for international cooperation in this urgent field. The draft contains a set of practical measures at the national level to strengthen the legislative base of states for putting up a reliable barrier to unapproved access to WMDs. It provides for concrete measures to reinforce and coordinate the efforts at the regional and international level.
The open debate on the draft has demonstrated the invariable readiness of the Security Council for close cooperation and consideration of the opinions of the member states of the UN, on whose behalf and in whose interests the above resolution is going to be adopted.
Russia calls upon all states to support the draft resolution of the UN Security Council. For our part, we shall continue our energetic efforts in the vanguard of the international community to counter the proliferation of WMDs.
2. Statement by Gennady Gatilov, Acting Permanent Representative of the Russian Federation to the UN Security Council Meeting on Nonproliferation of WMDs
Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation Daily News Bulletin
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We welcome this open Security Council meeting being held to discuss an urgent problem associated with the danger of the proliferation of WMDs and expect today's debate to help strengthen the international community's unity in combating this danger.
The Russian Federation was one of the initiators of the draft resolution of the UN Security Council. We consider that the problem of the proliferation of WMDs and the means to deliver them is emerging as one of the primary threats to international peace and security. The world community has to ever more actively tackle fundamentally new tasks in this field. To meet different challenges than before, but no less formidable.
The tragedy of September 11, 2001, and the acts of terrorism in Moscow, Madrid, Tokyo and a number of other cities of the world have demonstrated, with distressing obviousness, what is perhaps the chief present-day threat - terrorism. The Security Council took an active stance in countering this threat by passing the well-known Resolution 1373. In this decision the Council highlighted the close relationship between international terrorism, organized crime and illegal trafficking in nuclear, chemical, biological and other materials having the potential to threaten human life, and called for coordinating efforts at the national, sub-regional and international level to strengthen a global response to the challenges and threats to international security.
The problem of the existence of black markets for WMDs merits particular attention. This is the most dangerous market. Terrorists are resourceful and will stop at nothing to get components for the production of WMDs in order to deal a blow to innocent people. The draft would have states act to prevent WMDs and proliferation sensitive materials from falling into non-state actors' hands, primarily for terrorist purposes.
The draft resolution also orients states toward greater international cooperation to deal with this phenomenon. Of course, we presume that work in this sector should be based entirely on international law and national legislation, without hindering legitimate peaceful cooperation.
It is in this that we see the main content of the draft, prepared after lengthy expert consultations, both within the Five and through discussions with nonpermanent Council members and a wide circle of states.
The coauthors did not set themselves the task of replacing with this Security Council decision the international treaties in the field of nonproliferation and disarmament. Therefore the draft resolution contains provisions clearly indicating that its adoption will by no means undermine or come into contradiction with the obligations which the states have in respect of the international nonproliferation and disarmament treaties which they are parties to.
We believe that the Security Council not only has a right, but is duty-bound to take adequate measures in the field of international security, including those legally binding. This draft is no exception. It may be recalled that exactly nine years ago, in April 1995, the Council adopted Resolution 984 providing security guarantees in case of an attack on states, including an attack involving nuclear weapons. That resolution at the same time took note of the security guarantees offered by the nuclear powers concerning nonuse of nuclear weapons.
It is evident that there is a need for a special mechanism to monitor the implementation of the resolution. We support the establishment of a Security Council Committee on this question which could take up the collection and analysis of answers of member states regarding the measures taken by them in compliance with the resolution, as well as for possible assistance to states in case of appropriate requests.
We consider that the Committee should work in close coordination with, and draw on expert support from such agencies as IAEA and OPCW as well as the United Nations Secretariat. The duration of this work will depend, above all, on the fulfillment of the tasks set for it. A minimum term, it appears to us, would be one year.
We call upon all states to support the draft SC resolution on countering the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction.
3. NEXT STEPS IN NON-PROLIFERATION - Remarks at the Conference "The G-8 Global Partnership Against the Spread of Weapons and Materials of Mass Destruction"
Department of State
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PIR Center, Moscow, April 23, 2004
I am honored to speak to you today. I would like to thank the PIR Center for bringing us together so that we can focus our collective energy, creativity, and intellect on the challenge of stemming the spread of weapons of mass destruction.
Just as we have come together here today - representatives from many nations brought together by a common purpose - so too have our governments come together, committing substantial resources to making tangible progress in reducing the threat we all face from the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction. Our joint project, the Global Partnership, is a major milestone in post-Cold-War efforts to stop proliferation. Twelve years ago, Nunn-Lugar, or the Cooperative Threat Reduction (CTR) initiative, redefined the relationship between the great powers and set us on a new course, leaving behind our destructive antagonism in exchange for a collective approach to reducing a common threat. Today, our multi-national partnership expands and intensifies that commitment.
To be sure, the path has not always been smooth, as the inevitable complications of implementation have slowed progress in some areas. But these are resolvable issues, which should not deter us from our broader goal. Regarding the pace of implementation and the flow of funds for Global Partnership projects, nothing breeds success like success; as we clear away obstacles, our pace will quicken. And we must remember: it is concrete results that matter. Spending money fast is easy if you don't particularly care whether it is properly spent. But the money is there, pledges are increasing, and our diligence will ensure that we employ our resources wisely to achieve our ends.
Since other sessions of the conference will delve into the details of specific projects, I'd like to step back a bit to consider our achievement and our challenges from a broader perspective. It is in stepping back that we are reminded of how far we have come and, more importantly, of what remains to be done.
We should be encouraged that the Global Partnership, given birth by the G-8, has been adopted by Finland, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Switzerland, and Sweden, which already have committed over $200 million. Moreover, more nations have expressed an interest in joining the cause, making our partnership even more truly global. This reflects a growing international consensus, supported by resources and institutional arrangements, that will prove critical in maintaining the momentum of our non-proliferation efforts. I have great confidence that we will meet or exceed the $20-billion-over-ten-years pledge we made at Kananaskis, and that our efforts will go far toward securing or destroying materials of concern.
Nonetheless, even assuming our Global Partnership projects hit all of their targets, we must not grow complacent. I believe we should keep in mind Winston Churchill's dictum, "It is no use saying, 'We are doing our best.' You have got to succeed in doing what is necessary." And the fullest measure of our success is not dollars spent, or chemical weapons neutralized, or nuclear submarines dismantled, but whether we are effectively preventing the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction. Ultimately, we must judge our efforts by that criterion. And where we are at risk of falling short, we must, as Churchill said, do no less than what is necessary, for the stakes are that high.
While we have worked closely with Russia to address the risks of bio-terrorism, we must do more. As the recent SARS epidemic and other outbreaks have demonstrated, exotic diseases can wreak immense havoc even without any guiding hand. If terrorists were able to harness infectious pathogens, the impact of the attack could be felt around the world - on the life and well-being of our citizens, on trade and travel, on national and international security.
In recognition of this threat, my government has proposed a plan of action to other G-8 members. As a starting point, we believe that we need to cooperate in enhanced surveillance of infectious diseases. We need a clearinghouse of emergency health response assets so we can quickly identify the tools available to us in the case of a bioterror attack. We need to strengthen the protection of the food supply chain. And Russia, with its vast reservoir of scientific talent, has the potential to be an important partner in this effort.
In the nuclear sphere, we have seen great progress here in Russia. Just last month, I visited the closed city of Novouralsk, where I was greatly impressed by U.S.-Russian cooperation not only in safeguarding nuclear materials, but also in downblending highly enriched uranium (HEU) for sale to the United States for use in civilian reactors. The HEU recovered from demobilized Russian warheads will generate enough electricity to meet all the needs of the United States for three years. This remarkable program is fittingly called "Megatons to Megawatts."
Despite this stirring success story and progress on other critical programs here in Russia, events elsewhere have all-too-clearly demonstrated that the non-proliferation regime is under strain.
While we've been moving ahead here, albeit slowly, with plans to halt the production of weapons-grade plutonium, the North Koreans have declared they are reprocessing spent fuel rods, using many technologies acquired or developed while the country was still a party to the Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) and explicitly prohibited from such actions.
While our governments have expended over $150 million since 1999 here in Russia through the International Science and Technology Center to ensure there is no leakage of WMD technology or expertise to rogue nations, Iran has been cynically manipulating the NPT to continue its 18-year clandestine effort to develop its own nuclear weapons program. Despite pressure from the United States, the European Union, Russia and other members of the IAEA Board of Governors, continued Iranian deception clearly demonstrates that Iran has not changed its ways, and there is no evidence it has decided to abandon its weapons program. Iran's failure to include information about advanced centrifuges in the so-called "complete centrifuge R&D chronology" that was part of its purportedly "full" disclosure in October, and its incomprehensible suspension of inspections in response to the IAEA Board of Governors' call for greater cooperation, are but two of the latest examples of continued Iranian deceit.
While we have worked closely with Russia to develop material protection and control systems to guard against smuggling, we've uncovered a frighteningly sophisticated international smuggling network coordinated by Pakistan's A. Q. Khan. Now that the demand of rogue states for weapons technologies has given rise to such supply networks, unless we eradicate them, it may be only a matter of time before they seek out new pockets of demand, offering their services directly to terrorist organizations.
So let us take pride in what we have done and will do under the Global Partnership, but let us also take stock of what we must do differently to meet the evolving threat.
On February 11, President Bush spoke before our National Defense University outlining proposals for bolstering our non-proliferation regime. I would like to touch upon those ideas today.
First of all, as President Bush said, we need to expand the reach of the Global Partnership. From the outset, our commitment was to begin in Russia, but to expand to include key states of the former Soviet Union. We believe that the time has come to do that, and that Ukraine is a natural choice as the next recipient nation. Russia will remain our priority, and widening the circle of recipient countries will not diminish or dilute Global Partnership efforts underway in Russia. Yet we believe that a global problem requires an appropriately global approach.
We believe that the Proliferation Security Initiative (PSI) should be expanded. PSI has created the practical basis for cooperation among states in disrupting the trade in WMD, delivery systems, and related material. We have had productive conversations with Russia about its possible role in the initiative, and are hopeful that Russia will soon join. Already such interdiction activities have proven their worth - for example, by halting a shipment of enrichment equipment to Libya. This was an important step in convincing Colonel Qadhafi to give up his pursuit of weapons of mass destruction and rejoin the community of nations. Yet PSI can do more. We should extend its reach to include cooperation between law enforcement agencies to take direct action against proliferation networks and thereby prevent, not just disrupt, proliferation.
President Bush called upon the UN Security Council to pass a resolution requiring all states to criminalize proliferation, enact strict export controls, and secure all sensitive materials within their borders. We are working closely with Russia and other Security Council members to pass this resolution swiftly. Once the resolution is passed, we will stand ready to help other governments to draft and enforce effective laws to combat proliferation.
Furthermore, we need to strengthen the hand of the IAEA in three ways:
First, by the end of 2005, any state wishing to import equipment for civilian nuclear programs should have signed the Additional Protocol and be moving to ratify and implement its measures, with a view toward granting the IAEA the essential access to verify peaceful intentions. (I am pleased to note that the U.S. Senate ratified the Additional Protocol on March 31.)
Second, we should create a special committee of the IAEA Board of Governors that focuses intensively on safeguards and verification, ensuring that the Agency is prepared to take action to address possible violations whenever necessary.
Third, we need to eliminate a flaw in IAEA procedures that allows states under investigation for safeguards violations to serve on the Board of Governors, as Iran did last year. While all states would retain the right to present their cases in full detail, no state whose conduct of its safeguards commitments has been found deficient by the Board and Director General should be allowed to sit in judgment of itself in an organization that relies so heavily on decision by consensus.
President Bush's final proposal was that we must close a loophole in the NPT that has allowed states such as Iran and North Korea to develop weapons capabilities under the cover of civilian nuclear programs. The 40 nations of the Nuclear Suppliers Group should refuse to sell enrichment and reprocessing equipment and technologies to any state that does not already possess full-scale, functioning enrichment and reprocessing plants.
This is a key proposal, and one that has raised some questions. The proposal draws long-overdue attention to the fact that the NPT does not specifically prohibit the supply of technologies or materials that bring a country dangerously close to bomb-making. And regrettably as we have seen, there are countries which are all too willing to exploit this ambiguity by claiming a "right" to engage in activity that is completely unnecessary for a civilian nuclear program, but critical to weapons development.
According to the central bargain implicit in the NPT, states willing to renounce permanently any intention of developing nuclear weapons will receive access to nuclear technology for peaceful purposes. This proposal maintains that bargain: it would commit the world's leading nuclear exporters to ensuring that states have reliable access, at reasonable cost, to fuel for civilian reactors, so long as those states renounce enrichment and reprocessing. By circumscribing the sale of enrichment and reprocessing technology, we in no way hinder states interested in the truly peaceful benefits of nuclear energy, and take an important step toward thwarting the ambitions of those with overt or covert military motives.
Let us avoid getting tangled in unhelpful distinctions between the nuclear "haves" and the "have-nots." For such distinctions miss the larger and more important point - that we all share an overriding common interest in halting the spread of weapons of mass destruction. Disagreements over details may divide us, but let us step back from time to time to remember what has brought us together to form a Global Partnership in a united effort to create a world secure and free.
And if we must speak of "haves" and "have-nots," let us remember that the critical line lies between those of us who "have" a respect for order, international obligations, and the sanctity of human life, and those who "have not." We have seen what horrors such nihilists can unleash with a bomb in a Moscow metro, with explosive-filled backpacks in a Madrid railway, with commercial airliners in the skies over Pennsylvania, Washington, and New York. Let us do what is necessary to ensure that they and those who support them never acquire the means of annihilation that they seek. Let that goal be our guide.
I thank you for your attention, and look forward to our continued cooperation, during this conference, and in the years ahead.
4. Round Table ï¿½Atomic Legislation of the Russian Federation: Problems and Approachesï¿½
(for personal use only)
Translated by RANSAC Staff
April 20th, 2004, the round table ï¿½Atomic Legislation of the Russian Federation: Problems and Approachesï¿½ was held in the State Duma of the Russian Federation.
In the course of the round table, scholars and specialist-experts informed the new membership of the State Duma of Russia of the basic directions, needed modernizations, and practical steps in the area of atomic legislation, and also discussed with the deputies was ways to resolve tasks in this sphere of legislation.
Atomic energy ï¿½ the only type of large-scale energy capable of saving the planet from the global warming bread by the atmospheric emission of greenhouse gases. This energy is without negative residual effects for the environment and population. In order to reach this result, it is necessary to ensure the accident-free working of the acting power units and to conduct the replacement of units at those stations at which they were decommissioned. Russian atomic energy has good prospects, there is currently no alternative to it.
However, the development of atomic energy is impossible without the development of atomic legislation. Conducting modern reforms and further modernization of the Russian legal system requires reforming the norms of atomic legislation, the setting before it of new tasks. In particular, in the areas of state management and state regulation of the secure use of atomic energy, development of the forms of property and the organizational-legal forms of atomic energy organizations and the legal regime of their property, types of licensing activities, and also technical regulation and the development of common and specific regulations for nuclear and radiological security.
5. On the Unreliable and Biased Information Concerning the Security Conditions at Nuclear Installations in Moscow
(for personal use only)
Translated by RANSAC Staff
Head of the department for information policy of Minatom of Russia, N. Shingarev:
In recent days there was a marked focusing of the declarations of several ï¿½ecologicalï¿½ organizations on anti-nuclear themes. This storm, apparently, is connected with the approaching anniversary of the accident at the Chernobyl NPP and has a temporary character. However, the ï¿½black PRï¿½ raises concerns, which with the aid of several unscrupulous members of the media, support this campaign.
The notice of the Federal Service for Atomic Inspection (FSAN) [see Nuclear News 4/23/2004], published on April 20th, concerning security at nuclear research installations in Moscow has already answered this unreliable and clearly biased information, disseminated on the 19th of April by ITAR-TASS and picked-up by several electronic media outlets. The report establishes that ï¿½the condition of security at nuclear installations in Moscow causes concern,ï¿½ moreover, this was said on the authority of representatives of FSAN and myself. Concerning my quotation, in a telephone conversation with ITAR-TASS correspondent Nadezhda Pitulovaya I only acknowledged that several small nuclear scientific-research reactors are operating in Moscow and that the Federal Service for Atomic Inspection realizes control over their security. I cannot comment on what the representative of Atomnadzor [FSAN] actually said to the ITAR-TASS correspondent. But, judging by the fact that the words that were attributed to me, I did not say, and taking into account the content of the mentioned FSAN announcement, the journalists gave their own interpretation of his statement.
I want to underline again that the press-service of Minatom of Russian and the currently forming press-service of the Federal Agency for Atomic Energy were and will be open to representatives of the media and society. We are prepared to comment on any question included in our competency, and to do all [we can] so that the published information on the activities of the Agency and the enterprises of atomic energy is objective.
DISCLAIMER: Nuclear News is presented for informational purposes only. Views presented in any given article are those of the individual author or source and not of RANSAC. RANSAC takes no responsibility for the technical accuracy of information contained in any article presented in Nuclear News.
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