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The Importance of Bilateral U.S.-Russian Nuclear Cooperation During Times of Political Turbulence

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Today in Moscow, NTI and the Moscow-based Center
for Energy and Security Studies (CENESS) launched a new
joint report 
on the future of U.S.-Russian nuclear cooperation.
The report includes 51 recommendations for mutually beneficial cooperation
across five thematic areas: nuclear science, nuclear energy, nuclear safety,
nuclear security, and nuclear environmental remediation. If implemented, these
projects could result in safer nuclear reactors, stronger defenses against
nuclear and radiological terrorism, and cleaner approaches to nuclear
environmental remediation. 

Among its top recommendations, the report
concludes that “nuclear cooperation should not be held hostage to
oscillations in U.S.-Russian political relations.” As the world’s two
largest nuclear powers, the United States and Russia share a special
responsibility for engagement on nuclear issues. 

This has no doubt been yet another
turbulent week for U.S.-Russian relations – but this makes it all the more
important that the United States and Russia remain engaged on nuclear issues.
Doing so will ensure that we manage serious nuclear risks and find solutions to
pressing global challenges, including those posed by nuclear proliferation,
nuclear terrorism, and climate change.

This report provides a roadmap for such
bilateral engagement, rooted in the principle of mutual benefit. As NTI
Co-Chairman Senator Sam Nunn and
NTI Board Member and former Russian Foreign Minister Igor Ivanov
wrote in the Foreword to the report, “Moving forward with projects such as
those proposed in the report would allow the United States and Russia to begin
to rebuild the trust critical to putting bilateral relations back on
track.” 

The report serves as the culmination of an
18-month dialogue sponsored by NTI and CENESS between more than 50 U.S.
and Russian nuclear experts. 

 

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