Multilateral Initiative Frees Hungary of Bomb-Grade Uranium

Global Security Newswire Staff
Add to Briefcase
See more stories about...
Global Security Newswire Staff
Nov. 5, 2013, 10:02 a.m.

The last of Hun­gary’s highly en­riched urani­um has left the coun­try by air­craft, end­ing a years-long mul­ti­lat­er­al ef­fort to free the na­tion of the bomb-us­able nuc­le­ar sub­stance, the U.S. En­ergy De­part­ment said on Monday.

Three flights con­duc­ted since Septem­ber trans­por­ted the re­main­ing 108.5 pounds of ma­ter­i­al to Rus­sia, where it is slated for con­ver­sion in­to nuc­le­ar-power-plant fuel un­suited for use in weapons. The quant­ity of urani­um re­moved from Hun­gary in re­cent weeks is suf­fi­cient to fuel nine nuc­le­ar bombs, the de­part­ment said in a press re­lease.

The urani­um-re­mov­al pro­ject — con­duc­ted jointly by Hun­gary, Rus­sia, the United States and the In­ter­na­tion­al Atom­ic En­ergy Agency — pre­vi­ously pulled 418.9 pounds of highly en­riched urani­um from Hun­gary in three trans­fers com­pleted in 2008, 2009 and 2012.

Pres­id­ent Obama in April 2009 set a four-year dead­line for lock­ing down all vul­ner­able atom­ic sub­stances, but that ef­fort re­mains in­com­plete.

“The re­mov­al of Hun­gary’s re­main­ing HEU in­vent­ory shows the over­whelm­ing re­sponse of the in­ter­na­tion­al com­munity to Pres­id­ent Obama’s call to se­cure all vul­ner­able nuc­le­ar ma­ter­i­als,” U.S. En­ergy Sec­ret­ary of Ern­est Mon­iz stated in re­leased com­ments.

“We know that in the wrong hands, just small amounts of these ma­ter­i­als could be used to cre­ate a weapon of mass de­struc­tion,” Mon­iz ad­ded. “This op­er­a­tion in Hun­gary and our on­go­ing part­ner­ships with coun­tries around the world help to en­sure that ter­ror­ists nev­er ob­tain a nuc­le­ar weapon.”

What We're Following See More »
Trump Deposition Video Is Online
6 hours ago

The video of Donald Trump's deposition in his case against restaurateur Jeffrey Zakarian is now live. Slate's Jim Newell and Josh Voorhees are live-blogging it while they watch.

Debate Commission Admits Issues with Trump’s Mic
7 hours ago

The Commission on Presidential Debates put out a statement today that gives credence to Donald Trump's claims that he had a bad microphone on Monday night. "Regarding the first debate, there were issues regarding Donald Trump's audio that affected the sound level in the debate hall," read the statement in its entirety.

Trump Deposition Video to Be Released
7 hours ago

"A video of Donald Trump testifying under oath about his provocative rhetoric about Mexicans and other Latinos is set to go public" as soon as today. "Trump gave the testimony in June at a law office in Washington in connection with one of two lawsuits he filed last year after prominent chefs reacted to the controversy over his remarks by pulling out of plans to open restaurants at his new D.C. hotel. D.C. Superior Court Judge Brian Holeman said in an order issued Thursday evening that fears the testimony might show up in campaign commercials were no basis to keep the public from seeing the video."

Chicago Tribune Endorses Gary Johnson
10 hours ago

No matter that his recall of foreign leaders leaves something to be desired, Gary Johnson is the choice of the Chicago Tribune's editorial board. The editors argue that Donald Trump couldn't do the job of president, while hitting Hillary Clinton for "her intent to greatly increase federal spending and taxation, and serious questions about honesty and trust." Which leaves them with Johnson. "Every American who casts a vote for him is standing for principles," they write, "and can be proud of that vote. Yes, proud of a candidate in 2016."

Obama Compares Peres to ‘Giants of the 20th Century’
11 hours ago

Speaking at the funeral of former Israeli Prime Minister Shimon Peres, President Obama "compared Peres to 'other giants of the 20th century' such as Nelson Mandela and Queen Elizabeth who 'find no need to posture or traffic in what's popular in the moment.'" Among the 6,000 mourners at the service was Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas. Obama called Abbas's presence a sign of the "unfinished business of peace" in the region.