Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine together with the U.S. Department of State and the Norwegian Radiation Protection Authority have organized and conducted in Kyiv November 7-8 an exercise simulating the response to smuggling of nuclear or other radioactive (R/N) material.
Representatives from 15 Ukrainian agencies, the U.S. Department of State, the U.S. Department of Energy, and the Federal Bureau of Investigation participated in the exercise. The Norwegian Radiation Protection Authority and the Swedish Radiation Safety Authority attended the exercise as observers. Law enforcement, border security and other experts discussed the roles and responsibilities of competent authorities in effective responding to the smuggling of R/N materials. Ukrainian officials plan to apply the lessons learned from the exercise to further enhance Ukraine's Nuclear Smuggling Incident Protocols, which serve as a framework for coordinating the government’s actions to assess, control, analyze, investigate, and prosecute incidents of R/N materials smuggling.
This exercise demonstrates the seriousness with which each country views the threat of nuclear terrorism, and is a concrete example of how collaborative international relationships can help enhance capabilities to counter illicit trafficking of nuclear and other radioactive materials. It is the latest activity in a long-standing and productive partnership between the United States and Ukraine to reduce the risk of nuclear smuggling and the possibility of terrorists acquiring R/N material.