U.S. and Kazakhstan Hold Sixth Implementation Review to Combat Nuclear Smuggling

Representatives from the United States and Kazakhstan met in Astana on August 22-23, 2018, to review their ongoing bilateral efforts under the May 2006 Communiqué of the United States and Kazakhstan Delegations on Intentions to Improve Kazakhstan’s Capabilities to Combat Nuclear Smuggling.

The United States delegation was led by the Department of State’s Bureau of International Security and Nonproliferation, together with representatives from the Department of Energy, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Department of Defense, Nuclear Regulatory Commission, and the U.S. Embassy in Astana.

Experts from diplomatic, policy, law enforcement, and technical offices from both countries jointly reviewed progress, assessed Kazakhstan’s capabilities under the three elements of counter nuclear smuggling (prevent, detect, and respond), and discussed threat-based priority next steps for continued collaboration.

This Implementation Review reaffirms the partnership and commitment of the United States and Kazakhstan in the global campaign to prevent terrorists and other malicious actors from acquiring nuclear and other radioactive materials that could be used in a terrorist attack.  Previous Implementation Reviews were held in 2009, 2010, 2011, 2013, and 2014.

Since signing the joint Communiqué in 2006, the United States and Kazakhstan have reviewed legal and regulatory frameworks for material both inside and outside of regulatory control and exchanged counter nuclear smuggling best practices and lessons learned.  Kazakhstan has enhanced the security of its nuclear and other radioactive material and become a regional leader in countering nuclear smuggling.

During the discussions, both sides identified areas for future cooperation under the joint Communiqué.  U.S. and Kazakhstani delegates agreed to continue bilateral efforts to combat nuclear and other radioactive materials smuggling and to combat nuclear and radiological terrorism.