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Nunn-Lugar Eliminates Four Ballistic Missiles

The U.S. Cooperative Threat Reduction program in September supported disposal of four submarine-fired ballistic missiles and 161.57 metric tons of chemical nerve agents, Senator Richard Lugar (R-Ind.) announced on Monday.

The Nunn-Lugar program also assisted in the protection of six nuclear weapons train shipments and completion of five biological agent monitoring sites.

Since being established in 1991 to secure and eliminate weapons of mass destruction in former Soviet states, the CTR initiative has provided financial and technical assistance for deactivation of 7,610 strategic nuclear warheads and destruction of 902 ICBMs, 498 ICBM silos, 191 mobile ICBM launchers, 688 submarine-launched ballistic missiles, 492 SLBM launchers, 33 ballistic missile-capable submarines, 155 strategic bombers, 906 nuclear air-to-surface missiles and 194 nuclear test tunnels, according to a press release.

The initiative has also provided protection for 596 nuclear-weapon train shipments, boosted security at 24 nuclear weapons storage facilities and constructed 34 biological agent monitoring stations. It supported the removal of all nuclear weapons from Ukraine, Kazakhstan and Belarus, nations that once respectively held the world's third-, fourth- and eighth-largest nuclear arsenals.

Much of the work has been done in Russia, which recently has indicated it does not intend to renew its CTR agreement, which expires in June 2013. The program has increasingly looked to work outside the former Soviet Union, and has already eliminated Albania's small chemical arsenal.

Lugar, who is in his final weeks in the Senate, this month received honors for his national security and disarmament efforts from the Friends Committee on National Legislation and the public policy organization CNA, the release states.

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