Norway Funds Nuclear Security Effort in Kazakhstan

Dec 06. Global Security Newswire

Norway Funds Nuclear Security Effort in KazakhstanNorway on Friday contributed $500,000 for deployment of radiation detection technology at the Almaty Airport in Kazakhstan, the U.S. National Nuclear Security Administration announced.

Oslo’s financial contribution to the NNSA Second Line of Defense program would help Kazakh authorities in the identification and prevention of nuclear materials smuggling, according to a press release from the U.S. agency.

“We welcome Norway’s continued partnership and generous support as part of our common commitment to strengthen nuclear security worldwide,” NNSA Deputy Administrator Anne Harrington said in released remarks.

“Norway gives full support to the international efforts under the Global Initiative to Counter Nuclear Terrorism and is fully committed to the international work under way to prevent illicit proliferation of radioactive materials.” added Norwegian Ambassador to the United States Wegger Christian Strommen. “The current project in Kazakhstan is crucial because it builds capacity in order for Kazakhstan to contribute to these efforts.”

Norway has made one prior financial contribution to NNSA activities under the Group of Eight Global Partnership Against the Spread of Weapons and Materials of Mass Destruction. The first offering last year of $837,600 also went to nuclear security efforts in Kazakhstan.

The National Nuclear Security Administration also has in-kind and financial support agreements for its nonproliferation efforts with Canada, Finland, the Netherlands, New Zealand, South Korea and the United Kingdom. Those agreements have provided in excess of $31 million to help shutter Russia’s final bomb-grade plutonium processing reactors and more than $17 million to draw down and safeguard radiological and nuclear materials at vulnerable civilian atomic sites across the globe. Roughly another $11 million has been used to support the Second Line of Defense program, which helps improve detection capabilities for nuclear and radiological materials at foreign seaports, airports and border checkpoints.