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Keyword: plutonium

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  • Russian man kept 'bomb' plutonium

    11/02/2004 6:43:59 AM PST · by Ginifer · 11 replies · 192+ views ^ | Tuesday, 2 November, 2004 | SA
    A former Russian nuclear scientist has reportedly handed over to police eight containers of weapons-grade plutonium he had stored at home for eight years. The 400g (14oz) of plutonium-238 - a highly radioactive compound that could be used in a "dirty bomb" - came from a disused laboratory in Siberia. Former employee Leonid Grigorov says he removed it for safekeeping after the lab was looted, Russian media reports. He may face criminal proceedings, Russia's Itar-Tass news agency says. Counter-terrorism experts have repeatedly warned that radioactive material from decrepit Soviet-era installations could fall into the hands of militants. 'Morally right' Mr...
  • US plutonium arrives in France for reprocessing

    10/06/2004 5:52:05 PM PDT · by Willie Green · 21 replies · 483+ views
    For education and discussion only. Not for commercial use. ISN SECURITY WATCH (06/10/04) - Two heavily armed British freighters carrying 140 kilograms of weapons-grade plutonium docked in the western French port of Cherbourg on Wednesday, a day after demonstrators blocked a road leading out of the town by chaining themselves to a truck in protest against the shipment they said was vulnerable to terrorist attacks. Police used chain cutters to wrest the truck from the Greenpeace demonstrators and took them into custody. France plans to reprocess the 140 kilograms of weapons-grade plutonium imported from the US and transport to a...
  • Kyrgyzstan intercepts 60 plutonium containers

    09/29/2004 8:23:39 AM PDT · by Bald Eagle777 · 65 replies · 4,271+ views ^ | September 29, 2004 | Daily Times (no author given)
    Kyrgyzstan intercepts 60 plutonium containers BISHKEK: Kyrgyz security forces have foiled an attempt to sell 60 containers of plutonium-239, a substance used in nuclear weapons, a national security committee spokeswoman said on Tuesday. It remained unclear how much plutonium was captured, but an official said its grade was high enough to make a so-called “dirty bomb” that disburses high doses of radiation over large areas. One man was detained during the seizure of the plutonium last week while another suspect escaped, the spokeswoman said. “Plutonium-239 is not used in Kyrgyzstan. The security service is trying to establish how this material...
  • Alleged plutonium smugglers arrested

    09/28/2004 11:19:20 AM PDT · by knighthawk · 2 replies · 308+ views
    The authorities in the central Asian republic of Kyrgyzstan say they have arrested two men, who were trying to sell a large quantity of plutonium on the black market. The material can be used to make nuclear weapons. The men were detained last week near the capital, Bishkek. There has been growing concern in recent years that radioactive materials from former Soviet military or research sites could fall into the hands of extremists.
  • Kyrgyzstan 'foils plutonium plot' [trying to sell a large quantity of plutonium on the black market]

    09/27/2004 6:47:02 PM PDT · by Mike Fieschko · 10 replies · 398+ views
    BBC ^ | Sep 27, 2004 | Ian MacWilliam
    Authorities in Kyrgyzstan say they have arrested two men who were trying to sell a large quantity of plutonium on the black market. The men were detained last week near the capital, Bishkek, but the news was not immediately released. There has been growing concern that radioactive materials from former Soviet military or research sites could fall into the hands of extremists. Plutonium is very toxic and can be used in atomic weapons or as reactor fuel. The highly radioactive material could be used to make a dirty bomb - a non-nuclear explosive which scatters radioactive material packed inside it....
  • US sends plutonium to France (34 tonnes, enough for 40 nuclear bombs)

    09/21/2004 10:47:54 AM PDT · by Truth666 · 45 replies · 1,026+ views
    Under heavy security and amidst much opposition, enough plutonium for 40 nuclear bombs is being taken by sea from the US to France for processing. The US and French authorities see the shipment as the first step in a new “atoms for peace” programme to convert 34 tonnes of plutonium from "surplus" US weapons into fuel for power stations. "This is not just important for national security, it is important for the security of the world," says Bryan Wilkes of the US National Nuclear Security Administration.
  • U.S. Government Ships Plutonium to France

    09/20/2004 6:21:18 PM PDT · by Artemis Webb · 16 replies · 429+ views
    Associated Press ^ | september 20th, 2004 | JENNIFER HOLLAND
    COLUMBIA, S.C. - A shipment of weapons-grade plutonium has left the United States for a nuclear reactor in France, drawing protests from activists who believe the shipment poses both an environmental and terrorist threat. Government officials confirmed the plutonium had left the United States aboard an armored ship escorted by second ship, but they would not say when the shipment departed, citing security concerns. However, about 20 activists waved signs and banners along the Charleston waterfront Monday to protest what they said was the departing plutonium. "This is really the wrong signal to be sending to countries around the world,"...
  • Seoul Admits Extracting Plutonium

    09/09/2004 6:38:02 PM PDT · by blam · 2 replies · 216+ views
    BBC ^ | 9-9-2004 | Ben Scanlon
    Seoul admits extracting plutonium South Korean officials are liaising with the IAEA over the revelations South Korea has admitted it extracted a small amount of plutonium - a key ingredient in nuclear bombs - in secret research conducted in the early 1980s. The news comes just a week after Seoul said 0.2 of a gram of uranium was produced in 2000, by scientists who did not have government approval. North Korea, in its first comment on that development, said it viewed it in the context of a regional arms race. Seoul has been trying to get the North to give...
  • Lawmakers question security of DOE shipment of plutonium to France

    08/27/2004 12:20:41 PM PDT · by Excuse_My_Bellicosity · 2 replies · 599+ views ^ | August 25, 2004 | Mike Nartker, Global Security Newswire
    Noting concerns that terrorists may attempt to influence the U.S. November elections through an attack, Democratic lawmakers this month have raised questions concerning the security of a planned shipment of more than 100 kilograms of plutonium to France. The Energy Department is expected next month to ship 140 kilograms of plutonium to France to be converted into mixed-oxide fuel for use in testing at a U.S. nuclear power plant for possible future energy generation. The project is intended to help advance a U.S.-Russian nonproliferation program to eliminate a combined total of almost 70 tons of plutonium. Antinuclear activists such as...
  • A Critical Nuclear Moment

    06/23/2004 11:42:15 PM PDT · by neverdem · 28 replies · 253+ views
    The Washington Post ^ | June 24, 2004 | Brent Scowcroft
    The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) has just rebuked Iran for failing to cooperate fully with international inspectors who are examining whether Tehran is meeting its nonproliferation commitments. How concerned should we be about this development? What does it mean? By its own admission, Iran has been taking steps to develop the capability to enrich uranium, one of the two methods used to produce weapons-grade fissile material. While Iran says its activities are solely for peaceful production of nuclear power and are permitted by the Non-Proliferation Treaty, once enrichment capability exists, a major barrier to producing a nuclear weapon virtually...
  • Chinese Diplomats Rush Past Lab Guards (Los Alamos)

    04/26/2004 8:16:07 AM PDT · by threat matrix · 62 replies · 1,445+ views
    Washington Times ^ | Bill Gertz
    Two Chinese diplomats, away from their Los Angeles consulate improperly, recently sped their vehicle past a Los Alamos National Lab guard post near classified facilities in what United States officials think was ian intelligence mission, the Washington Times has learned.The diplomats, identified as Hua Yu and Bo Lai, were on an intelligence mission that is raising new worries of Chinese nuclear spying against the United States, according to US officials familiar with the incident.Pajarito Road is the site of two sensitive facilities. One is the Critical Assembly Facility known as Technical Area 18, the other is the Plutonium Reasearch facility,...
  • Pluthermal power

    03/23/2004 3:18:39 PM PST · by Willie Green · 11 replies · 792+ views
    The Asahi Shimbun ^ | March 23,2004 | editorial
    For education and discussion only. Not for commercial use. Thorough review is needed of nuclear fuel cycle policy. After years of problems and delays, Japan's power industry has taken a major step toward its long-cherished dream of using plutonium as fuel for conventional nuclear reactors. The breakthrough came when Fukui Prefecture recently approved a plan by Kansai Electric Power Co. plan to purchase plutonium-uranium mixed-oxide (MOX) fuel from overseas to burn in reactors at its nuclear power plant in Takahama, a town along the Sea of Japan coast. The power company hopes its pluthermal operations will begin in 2007. Kansai...
  • US warns NKorea to stop exporting dangerous weapons or face world action

    03/13/2004 4:58:51 AM PST · by Momaw Nadon · 21 replies · 376+ views
    AFP via Yahoo! ^ | Friday, March 12, 2004 | AFP
    WASHINGTON (AFP) - The United States warned North Korea that it would face action from the international community if it does not stop exporting dangerous weapons and other illegal activities. "If North Korea will not act, it will find the United States, its allies and other partners equally prepared to respond with measures that ensure North Korea cannot threaten our countries or international stability," said Mitchell Reiss, the department's director of policy planning. Speaking at the Heritage Foundation, one of Washington's leading repositories of expertise on East Asia, Reiss said the United States was taking steps to enforce its laws...
  • North Korea May Get Aid if It Pledges Nuclear Curb

    02/24/2004 10:44:42 PM PST · by neverdem · 7 replies · 84+ views
    NY TIMES ^ | February 25, 2004 | STEVEN R. WEISMAN and DAVID E. SANGER
    WASHINGTON, Feb. 24 — North Korea will be offered economic aid in return for a pledge to freeze and eventually dismantle its nuclear weapons facilities, according to senior Asian and American officials. But they said the offer was expected to be presented by South Korea, not the United States, in talks beginning on Wednesday in Beijing. The informal agreement between Washington and its Asian partners on how to approach North Korea represents a partial retreat by the Bush administration, which has long insisted that it would not reward the North for simply freezing its nuclear weapons program. Administration officials argue...
  • Libya converted small amount of plutonium, says U.N. nuclear watchdog report

    02/20/2004 10:16:16 AM PST · by HAL9000 · 10 replies · 208+ views
    Associated Press | GEORGE JAHN
    VIENNA, Austria, Feb 20, 2004 (AP WorldStream via COMTEX) -- Using technology and know-how acquired through the black market, Libya was able to process uranium into plutonium, the U.N. nuclear watchdog said Friday. Diplomats citing a report from the International Atomic Energy Agency said the country was able to "separate a small amount of plutonium." The report did not specify the amount, but it appeared to be less than the approximately three kilograms (nearly seven pounds) required to make a nuclear bomb. The report was prepared by IAEA Director General Mohamed ElBaradei ahead of a board of governors' meeting...
  • China's Implication In Nuclear Dealing Brings Germany's Reactor Sale Issue Up Again

    02/17/2004 11:13:34 AM PST · by longjack · 12 replies · 213+ views
    "Spiefel-Online" ^ | February 17, 2004 | Matthias Gebauer
          Aktuell   China's participation in atomic smuggling Fissionable material for the coalition by  Matthias Gebauer The new dislosures about China's role in the sale of nuclear know-how has the discussions over the export of the Hanau fuel element plant boiling up again. Some Greens are threatening openly with the end of the coalition if Chancellor Schröder allows the deal to go through. MARCO-URBAN.DE Governing-Team Schröder/Fischer: Looking for a solution without losing face. Berlin - Green party leader Angelika Beer didn't want to say much about the Hanau topic during her press conference on Monday. "There isn't any new position",...
  • Arrest of second Pak n-expert exposes jehadi bomb trail

    10/25/2001 8:10:10 PM PDT · by kattracks · 62 replies · 650+ views | 10/25/01 | HTC and Agencies
    (Islamabad/Moscow, October 25) There is now a nuclear dimension to the Afghan war. A second retired Pakistani atomic scientist was picked up by Islamabad on Tuesday night on the suspicion that he was developing a nuclear device for Osama bin Laden and the Taliban. The arrests followed tip-offs by the US Federal Bureau of Investigation to the Pakistani authorities. Sultan Bashiruddin Mehmood and Abdul Majeed, both scientists who had retired from the Pakistan Atomic Energy Commission (PAEC), were picked up after the FBI provided evidence of their links to jehadi outfits. The Pakistan Interior Minister, Moinuddin Haidar, said on ...
  • North Korea showed U.S. apparent plutonium sample

    01/20/2004 5:45:49 PM PST · by HAL9000 · 7 replies · 96+ views
    Knight-Ridder Newspapers | January 20, 2004 | WARREN P. STROBEL
    WASHINGTON - North Korea allowed a leading U.S. nuclear expert to hold in his hand an apparent sample of plutonium for nuclear weapons during a visit two weeks ago, U.S. officials said Tuesday. The dramatic moment came during a visit to North Korea's main declared nuclear facility at Yongbyon by a private American delegation that included Siegfried Hecker, former director of Los Alamos National Laboratory and a metallurgist by training. Hecker "said he thought it was plutonium," said one U.S. official, who spoke on condition of anonymity but is privy to the delegation's briefings for the Bush administration after...
  • Enough plutonium for five bombs ‘missing’ at Sellafield

    01/12/2004 3:12:40 PM PST · by OXENinFLA · 22 replies · 195+ views ^ | 12-28-03 | Liam McDougall
    Enough plutonium for five bombs ‘missing’ at Sellafield By Liam McDougall ENOUGH plutonium to make five nuclear bombs has gone missing from Sellafield in Cumbria in the past 12 months, it has been revealed. The official report which lists “materials unaccounted for” at the UK’s nuclear sites found that 19.1kg of the highly toxic substance was apparently missing from the reprocessing plant. At the Dounreay plant in Caithness, meanwhile, the annual audit recorded a surplus 1.16kg of highly enriched uranium, which can also be used to make nuclear weapons. Spokesmen for each plant were quick to play down the figures,...
  • China Tries to Ease Concerns Over Planned Plutonium Processing Facility

    12/09/2003 3:55:38 PM PST · by Excuse_My_Bellicosity · 4 replies · 358+ views
    NTI Global Security Newswire ^ | 12/09/2003 | Joe McDonald
    China today sought to reduce concerns over its planned purchase of a German plutonium processing facility, saying the facility would only be used for “peaceful purposes” (see GSN, Dec. 8). The unused facility, constructed by the German firm Siemens, is designed to convert plutonium into mixed oxide (MOX) fuel for use in nuclear reactors, according to the Associated Press. “This fuel in China will be used for peaceful purposes I would like to emphasize that,” Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Liu Jianchao said. China and Germany are currently “having discussions” on Chinese assurances over the planned use of the facility, Liu...