Vladimir Putin has signed an order dismissing Chief of the General Staff of the Russian Armed Forces, General of the Army Anatoly Kvashnin, first deputy minister of defence. Before that, Vladimir Putin signed a new wording of the law "On Defence," which deprived the General Staff, called the brains of the army, of its function as "the main agency of operational control of the armed forces." Kvashnin lost the right to appeal to the Supreme Commander-President directly, bypassing the defence minister, and was degraded to the post of first deputy of Sergei Ivanov.
Kvashnin is a bright individual with unlimited ambitions, who does not spare himself or others. When he was a young man, a fighting vehicle burst into flames and he rushed into it to save a private disregarding the danger of detonation. Kvashnin never avoided the difficult sides of military service. He took over command in Chechnya in late 1994, when one general failed and another refused to assume the difficult job. However, an operation to storm Grozny in the New Year night of 1995, which he elaborated, ended in a tragedy: more than 350 servicemen were killed only in the 131st Maikop Motorised Brigade.
Uncontrollable drive, the inability and unwillingness to consider the price of success measured in the number of lives were the old trump cards of the Soviet school of military leadership. Anatoly Kvashnin learned his lessons very well and applied them more than once when he commanded a military district and became chief of the General Staff. It was under him and with his energetic involvement that the Main Command of the Land Forces was dissolved and later restored, that the Volga-Urals military district was split and re-integrated, with the headquarters moved from one city to another, and that the Strategic Missile Force was integrated with the Space Forces and the Early Warning System, only to become independent again.
He got away with anything, possibly because in conditions of general decay in the army he did his best to preserve the country's main weapons - the strategic deterrence forces, to create an integrated system of their command, and to place a new missile on combat duty that would ensure Russia's strategic security for at least 30-40 years more.
Kvashnin did not tolerate rivals. The list of victims of his bureaucratic infighting includes Georgy Shpak, commander of the Airborne Force, and Gennady Troshev, commander of the North Caucasian military district. Kvashnin's favourite method is thrust and drive - and a report to the president bypassing his direct superior (defence minister), especially because he could do it by the law "On Defence," which granted equal rights to the chief of the General Staff and the defence minister.
But amendments to the law, which the State Duma adopted without notifying Kvashnin, put a full stop to this practice. Kvashnin has lost. But will the army gain from his departure?
The army has had and still has many problems apart from relations between the Defence Ministry and the General Staff. Though it has been proclaimed more than once that it would be reformed - or has been reformed, the Russian army remains Soviet in the form and essence. The new methods of hostilities and new structures, which the armies of all industrialised countries are developing, have failed to take root in the Russian army.
In particular, the special operations command has not been created to this day, there are no reliable reconnaissance systems, precision-guided weapons and the possibility of quickly delivering troops not by thousands of kilometres but to a small distance but at any time of day and night and in any weather. Neither do we have an ideology and principles of using such troops, including by rallying different troops and resources under single command.
The military claim that the General Staff will at long last stop fighting forleadership in taking defence decisions and will start creating long-term plans of the application of the armed forces in all possible situations. But to be able to do this, it should have new officers and not the ones who graduated from Soviet military schools.
2. Putin appoints Gen Baluyevsky Russian Armyï¿½s Chief of Staff
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President Vladimir Putin has decreed to appoint Colonel-General Yuri Baluyevsky, 57, the Chief of General Staff of the Russian Armed Forces, the presidential press service said.
Gen Baluyevsky is replacing the former Chief of General Staff, Gen Anatoly Kvashnin.
He has had the post of Kvashninï¿½s first deputy so far.
Gen Baluyevky is known to be one of the architects of the Russia-U.S. Strategic Offensive Reductions Treaty (SORT), which Presidents Putin and George W. Bush signed during the latter manï¿½s visit to Russia in 2002.
Putin sacks FSB deputy director who was in charge of problems of the North Caucasian region.
On July 16, Putin signed a decree ï¿½On the Federal Security Service of the Russian Federation.ï¿½ The decree made changes to the FSB normative acts.
Under the decree, the FSB Director will have one first deputy director, one first deputy director for the Border Troops Service, and two deputy directors of the FSB.
In order to make the FSB activity more effective, the decree sets up within the FSB independent units, FSB services and abolishes the pertinent departments of the Federal Security Service.
A personnel overhaul in the armed forces, so much touted by Russian military experts recently, has been carried out. General of the Army Anatoly Kvashnin, chief of the general staff of Russia's armed forces since 1997, has been dismissed, while Colonel-General Yury Baluyevsky, his first deputy, has been appointed in his place, as was expected. He had also held his post since 1997, although he cannot be described as Kvashnin's successor.
As distinct from an ambitious and outspoken Kvashnin, who has always had his own opinion of armed forces development, and not always an appropriate one, Baluyevsky never made his views public and if he did he always saw that they agreed with the top brass. He can communicate both with superiors and subordinates. He is diplomatic and far-sighted in the good sense of the word. It was no coincidence that the Kremlin often named him a chief negotiator with the US, NATO, EU and other states and organisations on key geopolitical and strategic issues, from cuts in offensive arms to joint struggle against terrorism. Evidently the Kremlin hopes that in his new post Baluyevsky will be a perfect vehicle for the president's ideas and plans to reform and build up the army and navy.
But the personnel overhaul did not end with appointing a new chief of the General Staff and first deputy defence minister. On the same day as Kvashnin was dismissed and Baluyevsky appointed, the president also named another general first deputy defence minister - Colonel-General Alexander Belousov, former deputy commander of the North Caucasian military district.
His appointment came as a kind of surprise for military experts. Not only because men do not leapfrog from such posts as a deputy district commander to that of a first deputy defence minister. There are many intermediate steps to be scaled by the claimant of such a position. For example, one should first command a district, then serve in the General Staff as head of the main directorate or just a plain deputy minister. But here, a gigantic leap has taken place. But even this step taken by President Putin has its logical explanation.
Belousov is no novice in the army, and fighting in the North Caucasus even if as a deputy commander implies the experience and ability that are valued highly. In his new post, the colonel-general will deal with troop training, and tackle tasks that are very important for the army and navy, and his knowledge acquired in the counter-terrorist operations will enable him to start his new duties without any need to learn the ropes. Troop training, as recent events have shown, is indeed the cornerstone of Russian armed forces' combat preparedness. And here Belousov holds all the aces.
It is perhaps these commanding and troop-leading requirements that prevented Colonel-General Nikolai Pankov, head of the main personnel and military education directorate, and Colonel-General Valentin Bobryshev, commander of the Leningrad military district, from being made first deputy defence ministers, as the media had speculated. The latter, although well known to Vladimir Putin, seemed not to fit the bill because of his age - he will be 60 soon, the personable age for generals. Moreover, a lack of combat experience played a role, as Bobryshev has not fought in Chechnya.
Changes will be made not only in the functions of the first deputy defence minister for troop training. Similar alterations are expected in the functions of the chief of the General Staff. Not only because this post is now occupied by General Baluyevsky, rather than by General Kvashnin. According to the new wording of the law "On Defence", adopted this month by the State Duma and approved by the Federation Council, the General Staff remains a body concerned with operational guidance of armed forces, but will focus on the main direction - drawing up strategic and tactical plans for the use of armed forces and on nuclear planning, and strategic forces of deterrence. Its functions will no doubt include also military intelligence (the Main Intelligence Directorate is not being re-subordinated), mobilisation reserves, call-up and other problems that are not discussed openly.
However, the personnel reshuffles and army and navy reforming will not end here. Changes are to be made among commanders-in-chief of the ground forces, the navy, the air force, and air defences. It is assumed they will lose some of their leading functions and will not deal with strategic planning, which will be done entirely by the General Staff, and will concentrate on commander and combat training and better use of forces.
These changes will take place in line with the administrative reform, which has been launched and actively pursued by the Kremlin administration, and under plans to build Russia's new armed forces whose immediate tasks were outlined in last year's report, known as the defence book, by Minister Sergei Ivanov.
The army is concentrating on new functions; it is trying to become more economically minded and stronger, more mobile and precise in wielding its might. And not against an ephemeral enemy against which it has trained for many years, but against a tangible and palpable opponent: international terrorism, the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction and their delivery vehicles, ethnic and religious radicalism, drug trafficking and organised crime. At the same time, it is still responsible for the strategic deterrence of a possible aggression, while it also trains to act within an international coalition force.
This requires not only new perspectives on how to ensure security and defence capability of the country, but also new people ready to translate these ideas into reality. Step by step they are beginning to emerge in the leadership of the armed forces.
1. United States to Aid Transfer of Russian-Origin Spent Fuel From Romanian Reactor
Global Security Newswire
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The United States and Romania signed an agreement Monday for U.S. help to repatriate Russian-origin spent nuclear fuel from a Romanian research reactor.
Under the agreement, the U.S. National Nuclear Security Administration would aid with the removal of spent fuel from a 2-megawatt research reactor at the Institute of Nuclear Physics and Engineering in the village of Magurele near Bucharest. The material would then be returned to Russia for storage. As host country, Romania would assist in the operation by providing security and other measures, NNSA spokesman Bryan Wilkes said today.
In September 2003, a joint U.S.-Russian operation removed about 15 kilograms of Russian-origin fresh nuclear fuel originally slated to be used in the reactor from the Pitesti Institute for Nuclear Research, west of Bucharest.
Nuclear nonproliferation experts have warned of the proliferation risks posed by unsecured fresh and spent nuclear fuel at research reactors around the world, which could be attractive to terrorists seeking to develop crude nuclear or radiological weapons. In late May, U.S. Energy Secretary Spencer Abraham announced the launch of the U.S. Global Threat Reduction Initiative, which seeks to work with Russia to repatriate all Russian-origin fresh highly enriched uranium fuel by the end of 2005 and accelerate and complete the return of all Russian-origin spent fuel by 2010 (see GSN, May 26). According to the NNSA, there are about 4 metric tons of Russian-origin nuclear material at 20 reactor sites in 17 countries.
While refusing to provide specific details as to when spent fuel would be returned from the Magurele reactor, Wilkes said that all Russian-origin spent fuel in Romania is set to be repatriated by the end of 2006.
Many details of the U.S. plan to support the effort remain undisclosed, such as, the cost of the operation, the current security situation at the Romanian site, and how much material is set to be returned to Russia from the reactor. A 2000 study prepared by the European Commission says there are 226 spent fuel assemblies in storage at the reactor site.
Romania decided in 2002 to permanently shut down the Magurele reactor, which had been inactive since 1997, to prepare it for decommissioning, according to the U.S. Energy Department.
The U.S.-Romanian agreement on implementing nuclear nonproliferation projects was signed Monday in Washington at the Romanian Consulate by Abraham and Romanian Minister Delegate of the Commission for Nuclear Energy Serban Valeca.
ï¿½This agreement provides yet another excellent opportunity for the United States and Romania to work together to reduce the threat of terrorism through the removal of proliferation-attractive material under the Global Threat Reduction Initiative,ï¿½ Abraham said Monday in a press statement.
Russia will not meet a 2007 deadline to destroy some 8,000 tons of chemical weapons due to a lack of funds, said Viktor Ozerov, the chairman of the Federation Council's Defense and Security Committee, on Friday.
The Interfax-Military News Agency quoted Ozerov as saying the lack of federal funds would prevent new facilities for destroying weapons from being built and could result in dangerous chemicals leaking into the environment.
The delay in funding, he said, "will not allow the country to destroy more than 8,000 tons of poisonous substances, a mere 20 percent of the stockpile, before 2007, as declared."
Ozerov said that nearly 33,000 damaged chemical weapons needed to be destroyed "urgently," and added that only one facility for destroying chemical weapons has started operations, near Saratov.
2. Russia Destroys More Than 70 Metric Tons of Lewisite
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Russia has destroyed more than 70 metric tons of lewisite at a chemical weapons disposal plant located near the town of Gorny in the Saratov region, ITAR-Tass reported Saturday.
The Gorny facility halted operations last week for planned repairs, according to ITAR-Tass. Plant technicians are working to develop means of disposing of reaction masses created during the recycling process, which are now kept in temporary storage facilities. One proposed option has been to destroy the masses at a facility constructed with German aid, ITAR-Tass reported.
In addition, a chemical weapons disposal facility being built near the city of Kambarka is set to become operational by the end of next year, according to ITAR-Tass. The plant would allow the 6,300 metric tons of lewisite in storage in Kambarka to be destroyed without transporting the material to other regions, ITAR-Tass reported (ITAR-Tass II, July 17).
1. NJ engineers designing biosecurity labs for dangerous pathogens
Linda A. Johnson
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Dangerous pathogens stored haphazardly across three former Soviet republics _ some once cultivated for biological weapons and others natural killers like the plague _ soon will be collected for storage in secure, state-of-the-art laboratories in Asia.
CUH2A, a Lawrenceville-based architecture and engineering firm known for designing science labs for government agencies, has begun designing research and storage facilities featuring Biosafety Level 2 and 3 labs for Kazakhstan, Georgia and Uzbekistan.
The labs will be monitored by top scientists from other countries and are to become part of an international network to spot dangerous disease outbreaks, said Kenneth Drake, the project director at CUH2A.
The company announced on Thursday it is doing the designs under a contract with Bechtel National Inc. of McLean, Va. A division of engineering giant Bechtel Corp., it is the prime contractor coordinating the project for the Defense Threat Reduction Agency, part of the U.S. Department of Defense.
"We're going to collect all of these dangerous pathogens in these countries in a single repository where they can now track who gets access to these things and who doesn't," Drake told The Associated Press.
A second goal, he said, "is to keep scientists gainfully employed, working on something for the good of their country rather than something evil."
The former Soviet Union, Drake said, once had about 60,000 scientists working on bioweapons for use against enemies. Many are now jobless or earning very little. In addition, parts of Asia still have outbreaks of deadly diseases eradicated in the United States, and specimens collected from patients at hospitals are stored in many locations.
"They have naturally occurring things like plague and anthrax and foot-and-mouth disease that could devastate our country," Drake said. "We want to make sure these materials and the people with the know-how don't slip into the hands of people who would use them against the United States."
The three former Soviet republics are in western and central Asia, near Middle East terrorism hotbeds.
Cindy McGovern, spokeswoman for the Defense Threat Reduction Agency, said it plans to spend $24 million on design and $100 million on construction of four centralized laboratories under its Bioweapons Proliferation Prevention program. The aim is to consolidate unsecured, dangerous pathogens "where their safety and security can be insured."
"Another program goal is enhanced research on naturally occurring diseases and pathogens, and an increased sharing of data and knowledge," she said.
Drake said the foreign and local scientists who eventually work in the labs will research treatments, possible vaccines and strategies for preventing spread of those diseases. Plans also call for sharing information about disease outbreaks there with the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's international network, he said.
The labs are to be built and outfitted by September 2007 and will be fully operational a year later, according to McGovern.
Two will go in Kazakhstan: one in Almaty focused on human diseases, the other in Otar for animal diseases. Labs for both purposes will go in Tbilisi, Georgia, and Tashkent, Uzbekistan.
CUH2A will complete the detailed construction plans for the Almaty lab by March, and construction should start within months. Architects and engineers at CUH2A's Lawrenceville and London offices should soon begin designing the other labs.
Each will have containment facilities designated as Biosafety Level 2 and 3, where labs have multiple-door airlock systems, researchers wear protective face masks and other equipment, and air is constantly sucked from the labs through special filters that trap microbes to be killed by sterilization. Those labs are one step below the top level, where scientists have to work in fully enclosed protective suits with their own air supply.
CUH2A has done or is working on projects building or upgrading biosecurity labs for research on the most dangerous pathogens _ deadly and exotic agents for which there is no vaccine or treatment _ for the CDC, the National Institutes of Health and the Army, Drake said.
Bechtel National also will coordinate work on upgrading or replacing some dilapidated and outdated facilities where disease specimens are collected in the three countries, according to Drake and Bechtel's project manager, John Deyermond.
Russia has scrapped 101 of its nuclear submarines, a representative of the Federal Atomic Energy Agency (the former Atomic Energy Ministry) told Interfax.
"It is planned to scrap 17 submarines this year, and nuclear fuel has been unloaded from 12 of them," the source said.
According to the Federal Atomic Energy Agency's data for December 2003, 193 submarines have been stricken from the navy.
"Currently, 24 atomic submarines are being worked on," the source said.
"It takes approximately two and a half years to scrap a nuclear submarine's hull and 3 months to unload the fuel," he said.
Some 1.9 billion rubles will be allocated from the state budget to scrap nuclear submarines. In addition, foreign investments in this program in 2004 are expected to reach 2.1 billion rubles.
Atomic Energy Agency experts say the scrapping process involves a number of highly complicated operations that are potentially dangerous in terms of radiation, chemicals and toxicity. Considerable funds are needed to ensure the safe disposal of these submarines and rehabilitate the radioactive equipment used in the scrapping. According to expert evaluations, the cost of primary work in this area is estimated at $4 billion.
The collapse of Soviet communism was the greatest advance for the cause of freedom in the late 20th century, but it left behind a legacy that could complicate the 21st century struggle to overcome terrorism. While the United States and Russia work to dismantle nuclear arsenals, terrorists and rogue states are seeking to obtain materials -- from former Cold War armaments and other sources -- to make nuclear weapons and "dirty bombs."
Securing this nuclear and radiological material is a top priority for the United States, Russia and many other nations. While much of it is concentrated in the former Soviet states, it is also found in other countries around the world. It constitutes a formidable threat if it falls into the wrong hands.
In the early aftermath of the Cold War, nuclear nonproliferation programs were appropriately focused on reducing and securing nuclear weapons and weapons material in the former Soviet Union. In 2001 President Bush broadened and accelerated these programs. Both he and Russian President Vladimir Putin have made nonproliferation a personal priority. The United States has developed much better working relationships with our counterparts in the Russian government, and we have been successful in bringing other countries into the effort.
President Bush's most recent budget request for the Department of Energy calls for $1.35 billion for the Defense Nuclear Nonproliferation Program -- nearly 75 percent more than the largest budget request of the previous administration -- and we have shortened the timetables and expanded the scope of many important nonproliferation programs.
The Department of Energy has accelerated efforts to secure 600 metric tons of weapons-usable material in Russia. By the end of this fiscal year, we will have secured more than 46 percent of this material, and in 2003 and 2004 we will have secured more of it than in any two-year period. We will finish this work by 2008, two years ahead of the schedule we inherited.
We have accelerated the recovery of about 10,000 high-risk radiological sources in the United States. We have helped the Russian navy secure its nuclear fuel and warhead sites much faster than originally planned, and have accelerated similar work at other military sites. We are installing nuclear detection equipment at international ports, airports and border crossings, and are working with the International Atomic Energy Agency on initiatives to locate and secure weapons-usable material around the world.
In the spring of last year, the Energy Department began a new program with Russia to upgrade security for its strategic rocket forces sites. By the end of this year, we will have secured two sites, and we are working to secure the remaining 15 by the end of 2008.
Other U.S. initiatives include the Global Partnership Against the Spread of Weapons and Materials of Mass Destruction, which President Bush called for and the G-8 leaders adopted. This 10-year program has brought new resources to bear and is engaging additional nations in nonproliferation efforts. The partnership already has secured almost $17 billion in pledges toward our target of at least $20 billion -- a figure we believe should be a floor, not a ceiling.
We are moving aggressively forward with these and many other programs, but we would be fooling ourselves, and endangering our citizens, to say we have done enough. This is why, in May in Vienna, the United States proposed the Global Threat Reduction Initiative to secure, remove or dispose of an even broader range of nuclear and radiological materials around the world.
Under this initiative, we will work in partnership with Russia to recover nuclear fuel of Russian origin from research reactors around the world and repatriate it to Russia for safe storage or disposition. We seek to do this not in three years, or five years, or eight but by late next year. We are also working to repatriate all Russian-origin spent high-enriched uranium fuel by 2009. At present about four metric tons of this spent fuel are at 20 reactors in 17 countries.
A second feature of this initiative is completing the repatriation of U.S.-origin high-enriched uranium spent fuel from research reactors -- about 40 metric tons in more than 40 locations around the world. This effort involves a number of diplomatic and legal challenges, but we believe most of the fuel can be repatriated in four to five years.
A third feature will be converting the cores of 105 civilian research reactors that use high-enriched uranium fuel to instead use low-enriched fuel. About one-third of the reactors are in the process of being converted or already have been converted, and we expect to finish another one-third in three to five years. The final one-third could be more difficult.
While we have developed low-enriched uranium fuel that works for some reactors, it does not work for others -- and developing a suitable fuel for these reactors will take time. Until a new fuel is available, some nations will be reluctant to give up the use of their research reactors. We have top scientists hard at work developing a substitute fuel, and they are making progress. In the meantime, critics who question our pace or commitment do not understand the technical realities or are choosing to ignore them.
The final pillar of the initiative is to identify nuclear materials and equipment not yet covered by existing programs and secure those materials and equipment as safely and quickly as possible.
With all these initiatives and other efforts across the government, President Bush is pursuing the most aggressive nonproliferation effort in history. Four years ago there was no comprehensive international effort to address radiological dispersal devices. Today there is. Four years ago there was no program to place radiation detection equipment at the world's major shipping ports. Today there is. Four years ago, there was no formal agreement to return Russian-origin spent high-enriched uranium reactor fuel to Russia. Today there is. Most important: Four years ago there was no G-8 global partnership with $20 billion in commitments for nonproliferation. But today, those programs are in place.
Securing nuclear and radiological materials is one of our highest priorities and greatest responsibilities in the battle against terror. The United States will continue to intensify its efforts to keep a legacy of the Cold War from becoming a tool of the enemies of freedom.
1. Oak Ridge's role in Iraqi materials significant
Knoxville News Sentinel
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Whatever one thinks of Iraq and weapons of mass destruction, it's better to have the nuclear materials over here than over there. Once again, Oak Ridge is playing a significant role, and President Bush highlighted that role with his visit earlier this week.
The U.S. Department of Energy announced last week that nuclear materials of potential weapons concern have been removed from Iraq and brought to the United States. Here, they will be stored and analyzed.
Although officials did not announce where these materials went, one official confirmed privately that some of the materials are stored at Oak Ridge National Laboratory. Initial speculation focused on the Y-12 National Security Complex in Oak Ridge, which specializes in uranium activities.
Earlier this year, Y-12 received a nuclear cargo airlifted from Libya. Those materials included centrifuge components that could be used to enrich uranium for nuclear bombs. Y-12's role was to provide high security, at least for a period, and to analyze the state of Libya's nuclear programs.
"We have the expertise here to understand the maturity of programs and other things like that," Dennis Ruddy, general manager at Y-12, said earlier. "So, a lot of the forensics will be done here by people at Y-12 or ORNL or visiting people who come from around the (nuclear weapons) complex."
In a press statement last week, Energy Secretary Spencer Abraham said, "This operation was a major achievement for the Bush administration's goal to keep potentially dangerous nuclear materials out of the hands of terrorists. It also puts this material out of reach for countries that may seek to develop their own nuclear weapons."
In this modern age of terrorism, that is a significant goal. That Oak Ridge is able to contribute to the process is something for which East Tennessee should be rightly proud.
The materials from Iraq included 1.77 metric tons of low-enriched uranium and about 1,000 highly radioactive nuclear sources from a former research facility. Those materials could be converted into dirty bombs or radiological dispersal devices.
The materials come from a nuclear research complex in Iraq now under the purview of the Iraq Ministry of Science and Technology. According to DOE, it "was once a central institution for Iraq's nuclear weapons program before being dismantled in the early 1990s following the first Gulf War. The complex also was the consolidation point for highly radioactive sources collected by the Department of Defense over the past year."
Ruddy, speaking earlier about the shipment from Libya, pointed to the acknowledgement of Y-12's role in such processes. "We want it (Y-12's future) to be vital, and we want to extend into areas of intelligence and nonproliferation and the like. So we've got to continue to build that expertise."
We agree that we here in East Tennessee like for our Oak Ridge facilities to be at the forefront of the fight against terrorism and all the details that involves.
The highly specialized professionals who work in Oak Ridge are there to help keep nuclear materials safely harnessed here and out of the hands of terrorists. They have the expertise to analyze the materials to provide a better idea of what they could have been used for.
All of this adds to America's store of knowledge, and anything we can contribute to that store benefits us all.
1. RUSSIA PLANS FURTHER COOPERATION BETWEEN SECURITY COUNCIL AND COUNTER TERRORISM COMMITTEE
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While Russia is chair of the UN Counter Terrorism Committee (CTC), the committee will begin preparations for the first visit of its representatives to one of the UN member-states, Russia's acting permanent representative in the United Nations, Alexander Konuzin, said at a session of the UN Security Council devoted to the CTC's activity.
Russia's three-month term as chair of the committee began in July.
According to Mr. Konuzin, the first-ever visit to one of the UN member-states "will be of great importance for the creation of an atmosphere of cooperation and granting of technical assistance on the basis of the more precise evaluations of the requirements of the countries."
"The committee will follow the course toward closer coordination with the UN structures, dealing with various aspects of the fight against terrorism," he noted
He said that while Russia was chair, it planned to promote cooperation between the CTC and the UN Security Council. "Above all, we plan to strengthen cooperation between the CTC and the Security Council Committee that was set up under Resolution 1267 on Al Qaeda and the Taliban movement." According to the Russian representative, these issues were already discussed at an unofficial meeting of the representatives of the two committees. "We have coordinated some forms of cooperation," he said. "As contacts between our committees develop, we will be ready to consider further coordination measures," he added.
Apart from that, the CTC will strive to establish working contacts with the Security Council Committee that was created under Resolution 1540 on the problems of nonproliferation in the context of the terrorist threat.
Summarizing the results of the previous three-month program, Mr. Konuzin noted the growth in the number of the states that have joined international conventions and protocols on the problems of terrorism. This fact, in his opinion, makes an important contribution to the strengthening of the international-legal basis of the fight against terrorism.
At the same time, the Russian diplomat pointed out the slow progress in the work of on the reports that had been presented by the states in reply to the committee's letters. Out of the 65 reports, which were planned to be considered from April 1 to June 30, 2004, only 25 were actually considered.
By June 30, 2004, the committee received 515 reports from member-countries and other sides, and 71 states did not submit their reports in time. Mr. Konuzin called on the representatives of these states to submit the delayed reports as soon as possible.
From July to September, the committee intends to more actively coordinate technical assistance in combating terrorism to states, Mr. Konuzin said. Work to assess the amount of technical assistance states will require will continue. The estimating of the requirements of the states in technical assistance will be continued, with the creation of an effective mechanism of exchanging non-confidential information with the potential donors in mind.
The committee intends to cooperate with a number of the G8's counter-terrorism actions, in particular, to discuss matters concerning the exchange of information to find the most efficient use of the resources of the donor community.
1. RUSSIA AND IRAN MOVE TOWARD POWER STATION COMPLETION
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Alexander Rumyantsev, head of Russia's Federal Atomic Energy Agency, met Iranian Ambassador Gholamreza Shafee in Moscow on Monday to discuss progress in the construction by Russian experts of the Bushehr nuclear power station. The sides also discussed matters related to the signing of a treaty on returning spent nuclear fuel to Russia and a number of aspects related with Rumyantsev's visit to Tehran, which is scheduled to take place this autumn.
Russia is completing the construction of the station's first generating unit. The contract for building the station was signed in 1995. The 1,000 MWt/h light-water reactor is considered to be a world leader in terms of safety and its operational capabilities. The reactor will use nuclear fuel imported from Russia. The first fuel delivery for the Bushehr power plant will be dispatched, according to the technological arrangements, no earlier than six months before the first trial, which is scheduled for the end of 2005. Fuel for the station will be delivered by sea or, possibly, by air.
According to Russia's terms and conditions, the spent nuclear fuel will be sent back to Russia for processing and storage. The obligatory return of spent fuel and payment for the services associated with this was not stipulated in the agreement to construct the station, which is a flaw in the contract. This explains the pause Iran has taken to study the legal and commercial aspects of this new circumstance. Iran had no objections to returning the spent fuel, but Russia's prices of the services appeared to be too high. Time was needed to solve the financial problems, but the pause lasted so long that it led to rumours that Russia was about to suspend construction. Russia immediately dispelled all the doubts by re-iterating that it was determined to meet its obligations on time. "I don't see what can limit our co-operation with Iran, which is regulated by international law andthe Nonproliferation Treaty," Rumyantsev said. The Russian Foreign Ministry's official spokesman, Alexander Yakovenko, also said it was "impossible" to suspend the construction of the Bushehr power station.
Moscow and Tehran only have to sign an agreement on returning the spent fuel to Russia to give the green light to the finishing stage of the project. And this is why Rumyantsev is going to visit Iran in the autumn.
Alexander Rumyantsev, head of the Russian Federal Agency for Atomic Energy, and the Iranian Ambassador to Moscow, Gholam Reza Shafei, will discuss the possibility of signing a nuclear waste storage agreement as they will meet in Moscow Monday, a source in the Iranian Embassy has told RIA Novosti.
The meeting's agenda will be dominated by Rumyantsev's visit to Iran in October or November this year and prospects for signing an agreement on storage in Russia of nuclear waste from the Bushehr plant, built in association with Russian specialists.
The sides are now considering the commercial side of the prospective agreement, expected to be signed during Rumyantsev's meeting this fall with Gholam Reza Agazade, Vice President in charge of Iran's Atomic Energy Organization, the embassy source reports.
Earlier, Rumyantsev told RIA that the agreement was ready for signing and only technical appendices remained to be finalized. Specifically, the sides are yet to agree on the price to be paid by Iran for storage of its nuclear waste, the official said. According to him, the price will be set within the range of $600 to $1,500 per kilogram. Other outstanding issues include the transportation of waste to storage sites, he added.
In reply to a RIA correspondent's question as to whether the forthcoming talks will touch upon Russia's possible involvement in the construction of a second unit of the Bushehr nuclear power plant, Rumyantsev said that the matter was currently being considered at the expert level.
"Of course, Russia has all the necessary potential to undertake yet another construction project in Iran, but this issue will have to be discussed at the top intergovernmental level," he said.
Germany's Siemens started the construction of a second Bushehr reactor a long time ago, but was unable to complete it owing to political upheavals in Iran.
Feasibility studies will now have to be carried out to see if Russia should follow through on Siemens' project or rather start from scratch on a different site, Rumyantsev said. This will be a long process, he added.
1. U.S. may be flexible in resolving North Korean nuclear problem - Vershbow
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The fourth round of six-nation talks on North Korea's nuclear program may bring concrete results, U.S. Ambassador to Russia Alexander Vershbow told Interfax. Representatives of North Korea, South Korea, Russia, the United States, China and Japan will convene in Beijing in September.
Concrete results can be achieved if all parties realize that complete de-nuclearization of the Korean Peninsula is the final goal of this process, the U.S. ambassador said.
Vershbow said that the U.S. had made it understood that it was ready to be flexible within this framework.
U.S. Secretary of State Colin Powell said at a meeting in Jakarta with the North Korean foreign minister in July that the United States was ready for the principle of words for words and action for action, Vershbow said. The United States is ready for gradual progress if the final goal is clear to everyone, he said.
Vershbow said there were positive results from Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov's recent visit to Pyongyang. Minister Lavrov's report after his visit to North Korea was encouraging, he said.
1. RUSSIA, USA PONDER DEVELOPMENT OF NUCLEAR POWER ENGINEERING
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A three-day meeting of Russian and American nuclear scientists, which ended behind closed doors on Wednesday, outlines ways of developing nuclear power engineering.
The meeting of directors of Russian state research centres and US national laboratories creating sustainable nuclear power engineering for the 21st century was held in the Vienna headquarters of the IAEA.
According to Academician Yevgeny Velikhov, president of the Kurchatov Institute research centre who attended the meeting, the scientists signed a document that would be forwarded for consideration to the leaders of the two countries. It stipulates the possibility of slashing the risk of proliferation of nuclear weapons and reducing the emission of climate-changing gases, the Academician specified.
The Russian and American scientists presented their vision of the evolution of the next generation of nuclear power engineering, including nuclear power engineering strategies for the 21st century that would strengthen the national security of the two states without affecting the benefits offered by nuclear power engineering to all countries.
According to Velikhov, the meeting greatly promoted mutual understanding of the strategy and tactic of nuclear power engineering development in Russia and the USA.
2. VELIKHOV: COMPREHENSIVE ATOMIC ENERGY PEACEFUL DEVELOPMENT PLAN REQUIRED
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Academician Yevgeny Velikhov believes that the time is up to develop a comprehensive and realistic plan of atomic energy peaceful development, the president of Russia's Kurchatov Institute research center (Moscow) told RIA Novosti on Wednesday.
Mr. Velikhov is participating in a conference of the Russian state research centers and the American national laboratories' directors on developing stable atomic energy industry in the 21st century held in the Vienna-based headquarters of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA).
According to the Russian academician, "the world energy demand's growth against the background of the environmental restrictions' getting more and more strict requires significant use of atomic energy both now and all along the 21st century."
"To serve the mankind, the atomic energy should be safe, viable in terms of economy, plentiful, pure and reliable," said Mr. Velikhov.
Currently the Russian and U.S. delegations of nuclear scientists and world atom public figures are coordinating a document, which will be signed following the meeting in Vienna. Along with academician Velikhov and other famous Russian scientists and experts the drafters of the document include their American counterparts Paul Robinson, director of the U.S. Sandia National Laboratories, Hermann Grunder, director of the U.S. Argonne National Laboratory, and others.
1. Russia, U.S. pledge support for securing radioactive waste sites in Kyrgyzstan
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Russia and the United States have pledged US$560,000 to secure radioactive waste sites that Kyrgyzstan inherited from the Soviet nuclear industry, an official said Wednesday.
Russia's Nuclear Energy Agency pledged US$160,000 and the U.S. State Department will give $400,000 for securing and rehabilitating uranium waste sites in Kaji-Say, 250 kilometers (155 miles) east of the capital Bishkek, said Kyrgyz Emergencies Ministry spokesman Emil Akmatov.
The waste sites contain 170,000 cubic meters (6,002,824 cubic feet) of radioactive uranium waste, Akmatov said.
The Russians will carry out an assessment, and the State Department will finance work to secure the waste sites and move waste to safer areas.
Akmatov said the project, which will start in August, still won't address all the issues related to the waste sites at Kaji-Say.
In June, the World Bank approved a $8.9 million grant to rehabilitate radioactive waste sites in southern Kyrgyzstan that threaten to contaminate the water resources of the Fergana Valley, the most densely populated region of Central Asia that is shared by Tajikistan, Uzbekistan, and Kyrgyzstan.
2. ARMENIAN NUCLEAR POWER PLANT TO CLOSE FOR TWO MONTHS TO UNDERGO REPAIRS
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The director of the Armenian Medzamor nuclear power plant, Gagik Markosyan, announced on 16 July that the facility will be closed for 65 days for repairs and refueling, ITAR-TASS reported. The planned repairs are financed by the United States and the European Union and include the installation of a new centralized computer system, switching and routing equipment, and upgraded safety monitoring devices. The European Union continues to demand that Armenia close the facility and has offered to provide some 100 million euros ($124 million) in grants to help the Armenian government secure alternative energy.
The Medzamor power plant provides over 40 percent of Armenia's energy needs and, since February 2003, has been managed by Inter-UES, a subsidiary of the Russian Unified Energy System group.
U.S. Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman Dick Lugar made the following statement today on the 9/11 Commission report:
ï¿½The 9/11 Commission report provides a useful historical record. More importantly, the President, the Congress, and all U.S. and international institutions engaged in the war on terror, must focus on the future. The Commission makes many recommendations ï¿½ including expansion of the Nunn-Lugar Cooperative Threat Reduction program -- that will need to be considered, along with steps already taken since 9/11, and recommendations made by others.
ï¿½Topping our priorities must be to make certain that all weapons and materials of mass destruction are identified, continuously guarded, and systematically destroyed, so to keep them out of the hands of terrorists. Expanding and globalizing the Nunn-Lugar program can help accomplish this. Nunn-Lugar has already destroyed more than 6,000 nuclear warheads and safeguarded many chemical and biological weapons facilities where such weapons are most numerous, namely, in the former Soviet Union.
ï¿½Additionally, the U.S. must strengthen our public diplomacy and build alliances. We must promote democracy and commerce, thus dampening the desperate economic conditions that frequently lead to political resentment in the developing world and create a climate conducive to terrorist philosophies.ï¿½
SUMMARY: A determination has been made that a Russian entity has engaged in missile technology proliferation activities that require the imposition of sanctions pursuant to the Arms Export Control Act, as amended, and the Export Administration Act of 1979, as amended (as carried out under Executive Order 13222 of August 17, 2001).
EFFECTIVE DATE: July 22, 2004.
FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Vann H. Van Diepen, Office of Chemical, Biological and Missile Nonproliferation, Bureau of Nonproliferation, Department of State (202-647-1142).
SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Pursuant to Section 73(a)(1) of the Arms Export Control Act (22 U.S.C. 2797b(a)(1)); Section 11B(b)(1) of the Export Administration Act of 1979 (50 U.S.C. app. 2410b(b)(1)), as carried out under Executive Order 13222 of August 17, 2001 (hereinafter cited as the ``Export Administration Act of 1979''); and Executive Order 12851 of June 11, 1993; a determination was made on June 15, 2004, that the following foreign person has engaged in missile technology proliferation activities that require the imposition of the sanctions described in Section 73(a)(2)(A) of the Arms Export Control Act (22 U.S.C. 2797b(a)(2)(A)) and Section 11B(b)(1)(B)(i) of the Export Administration Act of 1979 (50 U.S.C. app. 2410b(b)(1)(B)(i)) on the following entity and its subunits and successors:
Federal Research and Production Complex Altay (Russia)
Accordingly, the following sanctions are being imposed on this entity: (A) New individual licenses for exports to the entity described above of MTCR Annex equipment or technology controlled pursuant to the Export Administration Act of 1979 will be denied for two years; (B) New licenses for export to the entity described above of MTCR Annex equipment or technology controlled pursuant to the Arms Export Control Act will be denied for two years; and (C) No new United States Government contracts relating to MTCR Annex equipment or technology involving the entity described above will be entered into for two years. With respect to items controlled pursuant to the Export Administration Act of 1979, the export sanction only applies to exports made pursuant to individual export licenses. These measures shall be implemented by the responsible agencies as provided in Executive Order 12851 of June 11, 1993.
Dated: July 16, 2004.
Susan F. Burk, Acting Assistant Secretary of State for Nonproliferation, Department of State.
3. UN Team to Check Remaining Iraqi Nuclear Materials in Line with Non-Proliferation
UN Daily News Digest
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The United Nations atomic watchdog agency is planning to inspect remaining nuclear materials in Iraq this month to ensure that they conform to the country's safeguard obligations under the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT).
The inspection, announced yesterday by International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) Director-General Mohamed ElBaradei, is at the request of Iraq's Foreign Minister and separate from UN Security Council-mandated inspections, which probed whether ousted leader Saddam Hussein was developing weapons of mass destruction. Those checks ceased in mid-March 2003 shortly before the war.
The inspection will not be the IAEA's first related to the NPT since the war. Last June a seven-member team went to Baghdad to determine how much nuclear material was missing following reports of looting at the Tuwaitha Nuclear Research Centre, which had been under IAEA seal. It found that uranium compounds dispersed in the looting posed no danger from the point of view of proliferation.
4. mplementing Agreement Signed With Romania Under the Newly Created Global Threat Reduction Initiative
Department of Energy
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In the most recent step in the Administration's efforts to secure nuclear materials at potentially vulnerable sites in the world, the United States and Romania signed an implementing agreement today to accelerate the groundwork for future work on nuclear nonproliferation activities.
U.S. Secretary of Energy Spencer Abraham and Romanian Minister Delegate of the Commission for Nuclear Energy, Serban C. Valeca signed the "Implementing Agreement between the U.S. Department of Energy and the Nuclear Agency of Romania and the National Commission for Nuclear Activities Control of Romania Concerning Cooperation in the Area of Countering the Proliferation of Nuclear Materials and Technologies." The signing, which took place at the Romanian Consulate, was witnessed by Romanian Prime Minister Adrian Nastase, Foreign Minister Mircea Geoana, and Minister of National Defense Ioan Pascu.
"This agreement provides yet another excellent opportunity for the United States and Romania to work together to reduce the threat of terrorism through the removal of proliferation- attractive material under the Global Threat Reduction Initiative," Secretary Abraham said.
The goal of the Global Threat Reduction Initiative (GTRI), announced by Secretary Abraham on May 26, 2004, in Vienna, Austria, is to identify, secure, remove, or facilitate the disposal of vulnerable nuclear and radioactive materials and equipment around the world that pose a threat to the international community as quickly and expeditiously as possible. International partners, such as the Government of Romania, will be key participants in this new initiative.
The Implementing Agreement signed by Secretary Abraham and Minister Delegate Valeca provides the framework for the Department of Energy to perform joint work supporting nuclear nonproliferation activities. As a result of the agreement, the United States will begin work under GTRI's Russian Research Reactor Fuel Return (RRRFR) program to repatriate to Russia irradiated Soviet and Russian-origin fuel containing high- enriched uranium (HEU) from a research reactor in Romania. The Romanian government decided in 2002 to permanently shut down the Magurele reactor and prepare it for decommissioning. The Department of Energy's National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) will assist with the removal of the irradiated nuclear fuel.
In September 2003, under the RRRFR program, Russia accepted approximately 14 kilograms of fresh Russian-origin HEU from Romania. The RRRFR program is an essential element in the president's program to end the use of HEU in research reactors worldwide.
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