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Nunn-Lugar Program Eliminates More ICBMs

(Mar. 17) -The U.S.-funded Cooperative Threat Reduction program has destroyed 496 missile silos in the former Soviet Union, such as this SS-24 silo in Ukraine (DTRA photo). (Mar. 17) -The U.S.-funded Cooperative Threat Reduction program has destroyed 496 missile silos in the former Soviet Union, such as this SS-24 silo in Ukraine (DTRA photo).

The U.S. Cooperative Threat Reduction program last month eliminated eight ICBMs in the former Soviet Union, Senator Richard Lugar (R-Ind.) announced yesterday (see GSN, Feb. 19).

The effort also secured four nuclear-weapon train shipments and established a biological monitoring station in Georgia.

Since its inception in 1991 to secure and eliminate weapons of mass destruction in one-time Soviet states, the Nunn-Lugar program has deactivated 7,504 strategic nuclear warheads and destroyed 752 ICBMs, 496 ICBM silos, 143 mobile ICBM launchers, 633 submarine-launched ballistic missiles, 476 SLBM launchers, 31 ballistic missile-capable submarines, 155 strategic bombers, 906 nuclear air-to-surface missiles and 194 nuclear test tunnels.

In addition, the program has safeguarded 429 nuclear-weapon train shipments, boosted security at 24 nuclear weapons storage facilities and constructed 17 biological agent monitoring stations. It removed all nuclear weapons from Ukraine, Kazakhstan and Belarus, nations that once respectively held the world's third-, fourth- and eighth-largest nuclear arsenals.

Biological monitoring stations conduct disease outbreak detection and work with medical experts in the region and the United States. Eight facilities are located in Uzbekistan, five in Georgia, two in Kazakhstan and one in both Azerbaijan and Ukraine.

By sponsoring the International Science and Technology Centers, the Nunn-Lugar program has also helped to provide civilian opportunities for 58,000 former weapons scientists. The Energy Department's Global Initiatives for Proliferation Prevention has involved thousands of former weapons personnel in 750 projects and established 2,300 technology-sector positions (U.S. Senator Richard Lugar release, March 16).

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GSN ceased publication on July 31, 2014. Its articles and daily issues will remain archived and available on NTI’s website.

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