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Jakarta Post

RI to strengthen international efforts on nuclear security

  • Yohanna Ririhena

    The Jakarta Post

The Hague   /   Sat, March 22, 2014   /  10:12 am

Indonesia will lay out its concrete efforts in an international cooperation to prevent the trafficking and illicit use of nuclear material by terrorist groups and other non-state actors both domestically and regionally during the nuclear summit in The Hague on Monday.

Vice President Boediono will travel to the Netherlands to attend the Nuclear Security Summit (NSS), where world leaders will highlight progress made in securing nuclear material and commit to future steps to prevent nuclear terrorism.

The Vice President attended the first NSS in Washington DC in 2010, while President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono attended the second summit in Seoul in 2012.

The Foreign Ministry'€™s director general for multilateral affairs, Hasan Kleib, said that the country was interested in contributing to peace and security.

Indonesia, a party to the Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT), has vowed not to develop nuclear weapons. The country'€™s usage of radioactive substances and nuclear material has been limited to medical purposes, agriculture and laboratories.

However, the nuclear waste from those usages can still pose danger if not carefully managed.

'€œWe should be vigilant and better prepared in securing those materials,'€ Hasan, as Indonesian chief negotiator at the NSS, told The Jakarta Post.

During the NSS in Seoul, Indonesia proposed an initiative to strengthen international cooperation through the idea of National Legislation Implementation Kit (NLIK).

Other countries had also proposed initiatives, called gift baskets. Indonesia'€™s gift basket initiative was supported by 26 countries attending the Seoul summit.

Hasan said the NLIK could act as a model for any country preparing national legislation on nuclear security.

'€œThose who want to prepare national legislation on nuclear security could choose elements in the model suitable to them,'€ Hasan said.

It took two years to finalize and was submitted to the Netherlands as the NSS host. '€œThis is our contribution. We are very concerned about nuclear materials and substances being trafficked into the wrong hands,'€ Hasan said.

It is estimated that around 1,600 tons of highly enriched uranium (HEU) and 500 tons of plutonium are stored in locations around the world. That is enough nuclear material to develop some 126,500 nuclear weapons.

According to the Illicit Trafficking Database of the International Atomic Energy Agency,
more than 2,000 cases of illegal trafficking, theft or loss of nuclear and radiological material were reported around the world between 1993 and 2011, and of that amount, around 60 percent has yet to be recovered.

The NSS was initiated by US President Barack Obama, who pointed out the dangers of nuclear terrorism in a speech he gave in Prague in 2009.

Since the Washington summit in 2010, agreements have been made to better secure hazardous nuclear material (highly enriched uranium and plutonium).

At the 2012 Seoul summit, participants discussed progress and added the security of radioactive sources used to make '€œdirty bombs'€ to the agenda.