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Seoul Summit May Support Global Regime on Nuke Security

A senior South Korean government official on Wednesday said this month's high-profile nuclear security summit in Seoul is likely to play a key role in laying the ground for establishing a system of "global governance" on securing the world's atomic substances, the Yonhap News Agency reported (see GSN, Feb. 24).

"I think the [summit is] going to be a very important building block for something I call global governance," First Vice Foreign Minister Ahn Ho-young said at a Seoul event.

The March 26-27 Global Nuclear Security Summit is aimed at building on the goals established at an initial 2010 international forum in Washington -- to secure all nuclear materials against possible diversion to terrorists. Some 53 nations are expected to participate.

"There is a serious gap in global governance in the nuclear security area," Ahn said.

Currently, there exists no baseline requirement covering all nations for the physical protection of atomic substances, nor has any international agency been designated to verify that the necessary nuclear security precautions are being taken (see GSN, Jan. 12).

"When we develop a working institution to deal with the nuclear security issue, then, we will make another very important achievement which is the development of the building blocks for global governance," Ahn said.

Next month's summit is also anticipated to include discussions on minimizing the use of plutonium and highly enriched uranium in the civilian sector as well as how to safeguard radioactive substances from being used by terrorists in radiological "dirty bomb" attacks  (Yonhap News Agency, Feb. 29).

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