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Global Security Newswire

Daily News on Nuclear, Biological & Chemical Weapons, Terrorism and Related Issues

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CTR Program Eliminates Four Ballistic Missiles

The U.S. Cooperative Threat Reduction Program over three months helped facilitate dismantlement of one ICBM and three submarine-launched ballistic missiles, Senator Richard Lugar (R-Ind.) announced on Thursday (see GSN, Feb. 8).

The Nunn-Lugar program from December through February also supported elimination of nine nuclear warheads and 201.67 metric tons of chemical warfare nerve agents, and it helped to ensure the security of six nuclear-weapon train shipments, the lawmaker said in a press release.

Since being established in 1991 to secure and eliminate weapons of mass destruction in former Soviet states, the CTR program has assisted in deactivation of 7,619 strategic nuclear warheads and destruction of 793 ICBMs, 498 ICBM silos, 191 mobile ICBM launchers, 680 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 the announcement.

The effort has also provided safeguards for 562 nuclear-weapon train shipments, boosted security at 24 nuclear weapons storage facilities and constructed 38 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, Lugar's office said.

The Nunn-Lugar program aided the elimination of Albania's small stockpile of chemical warfare materials, its first effort outside the former Soviet Union. In total, 2,786.93 metric tons of Albanian and Russian chemical agents have been eliminated with assistance from the U.S. initiative (U.S. Senator Richard Lugar release, April 5).

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