Global Security Newswire
Daily News on Nuclear, Biological & Chemical Weapons, Terrorism and Related Issues
Netherlands Donates to U.S. Anti-"Dirty Bomb" Effort
The Netherlands on Wednesday agreed to provide $500,000 to an effort by the U.S. National Nuclear Security Administration to secure material in Kazakhstan that could be used for a radiological "dirty bomb," (see GSN, March 29).
The Global Threat Reduction Initiative funding agreement was inked by NNSA Deputy Administrator Anne Harrington and Gerard van der Wulp, deputy chief of mission at the Dutch Embassy in Washington.
"We welcome the Netherlands’ continued partnership and generous support of our efforts to implement the unprecedented nuclear security agenda outlined by President Obama at the Nuclear Security Summit," Harrington said in provided comments.
The worldwide prevalence of radiological sources used in medicine and other sectors has raised the specter of a terrorist attack involving a dirty bomb, which would use conventional explosives to disperse radioactive material across a wide area.The NNSA Global Threat Reduction Initiative's activities include cooperating with foreign countries to seek out radiological substances that have been left unused and unsecured and then ensuring they are placed in appropriate holding facilities.
The Netherlands' financial contribution will be used for an education program for the Kazakh Industry and New Technologies Ministry on finding and protecting disused radiological substances, and for the acquisition of equipment that would be used to secure and transport recovered items in the country.
"The Netherlands is committed to guaranteeing nuclear security and combating nuclear terrorism. Our signing of this memorandum of understanding with the United States is a concrete illustration of the Netherlands' active participation in the Nuclear Security Summit, the Global Initiative to Combat Nuclear Terrorism and the G-8 Global Partnership," van der Wulp said in released remarks (see GSN, Aug. 16, 2010).
The National Nuclear Security Administration has established comparable financial aid relationships with Canada, Finland, New Zealand, Norway, South Korea and the United Kingdom. Their monetary and in-kind donations aid the U.S. agency's global nonproliferation activities (U.S. National Nuclear Security Administration release, May 4).
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