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Last updated on April 17, 2014 at 12:58 EDT

Ukraine Getting Rid of its Stock of Enriched Uranium

June 9, 2011

KYIV, Ukraine, June 9, 2011 /PRNewswire/ — The Prime Minister of Ukraine

Mykola Azarov announced that Ukraine accomplished nearly all of its
commitments concerning the removal of enriched uranium from the country’s
territory. In April 2010 the President of Ukraine Viktor Yanukovych took on
the responsibility to eliminate the remaining enriched uranium stock in
exchange for the provision of necessary technical and financial assistance to
the project by the United States.

Ukraine has practically fulfilled its obligations to remove enriched
uranium,” such was the statement by Mykola Azarov after his meeting with the
International Atomic Agency Director General Yukiya Amano. The Prime Minister
believes that this accomplishment is Ukraine’s contribution to the world
nuclear security.

The amount of nuclear materials exported from Ukraine in 2010 totaled 106
kg. In exchange for enriched uranium Ukrainian research institutions were
provided with low enriched uranium for research purposes as well as financial
support for other scientific projects. The remaining enriched uranium is to
be exported from Ukraine by April 2012 before the start of Seoul 2012 Nuclear
Security Summit.

The White House press secretary Robert Gibbs had previously stated that
the amount of uranium removed from Ukraine in 2010 would be enough to make
“several nuclear weapons.” The chief counterterrorism advisor to the US
President Barack Obama John Brennan earlier warned that Al Qaeda had been
attempting to buy enriched uranium for over 15 years.

Back in 2010 the Ukrainian Ministry for Foreign Affairs disclosed that
none of the heads of the Ukrainian specialized scientific institutions had
stated the need for enriched uranium for research. Enriched uranium was
stored as waste and not used in research.

In December 1994 Ukraine has joined the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation
of Nuclear Weapons and proclaimed its non-nuclear status. Ukraine reaffirmed
its non-nuclear status in its Constitution and the declaration “On the State
Sovereignty of Ukraine.”

The last nuclear warhead was shipped from Ukraine to Russia in 1996 but a
significant amount of enriched uranium remained in storage at the Kyiv
Institute for Nuclear Research, the Kharkiv Institute of Physics and
Technology, and the Sevastopol National University of Nuclear Energy and
Industry.

SOURCE Worldwide News Ukraine


Source: newswire