United States and Slovakia Cooperate to Counter Nuclear Smuggling

Joint Press Release of the Embassy of the United States of America and the Ministry of Foreign and European Affairs of the Slovak Republic

Representatives from the United States and Slovakia met in Bratislava October 13-15, 2015, to discuss ways to further strengthen their countries’ joint efforts to counter nuclear smuggling. These discussions are a continuation of the ongoing bilateral cooperation since the two countries signed a Counter Nuclear Smuggling Joint Action Plan in December 2011 to work together to prevent, detect, and respond to nuclear and radiological materials smuggling incidents. At the meetings this week, representatives of both countries discussed how to prevent terrorists and other criminals from acquiring black market nuclear material and to enable successful prosecutions of smugglers.

Both sides reviewed activities related to the U.S.-Slovak Joint Action Plan. Within its framework, both sides discussed cooperation in nuclear detection, nuclear forensics, law enforcement investigations, and other tools to prevent, detect, and respond to incidents of nuclear or radiological materials smuggling.  Slovakia also reaffirmed its commitment to share its expertise with other international partners.

Recognizing the importance of coordination and drawing upon international best practices for responding to incidents of R/N materials smuggling, experts further discussed ways to integrate existing Slovak plans and procedures into a National Radiological/Nuclear (R/N) Materials Smuggling Response Plan.

Reports to the IAEA of continued smuggling around the world suggest additional nuclear and radiological materials are available on the black market and must be located and secured. The threat posed to regional and global security by the potential smuggling of these dangerous materials is best met through joint cooperation. Collaboration between the United States and the Slovak Republic strengthens counter nuclear smuggling capabilities in a comprehensive manner, deterring future smuggling attempts and strengthening the security of the United States, Slovakia, Europe, and the global community.