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U.S., Ukraine, and Canada Complete Major Joint Border Security and Nonproliferation Effort

Photos available on request

A Ukrainian Border Guard tests for radioactive material at Kyiv's Borispol AirportWASHINGTON, DC – The National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA), Administration of the State Border Guard Service of Ukraine (ASBGS) and Canada's Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade (DFAIT) held a ceremony at Ukraine's Kyiv Boryspil International Airport today to commission the operation of radiation detection equipment.  Today's ceremony also recognized the effective ongoing cooperation between the United States, Ukraine, and Canada in preventing illicit trafficking of nuclear and radioactive material across Ukrainian borders.

"We appreciate both Ukraine's commitment and Canada's contribution to advancing our common international security goals," said NNSA Principal Assistant Deputy Administrator for Defense Nuclear Nonproliferation Kenneth Baker at the ceremony.  "The commissioning of the radiation detection system at Kyiv Boryspil International Airport represents an important step forward in increasing transcontinental security.  We will continue to strengthen our cooperation as we work together to complete installation of the radiation detection systems at other sites in Ukraine."

Funds for the purchase and installation of the equipment at this site were provided by the Government of Canada through the Global Partnership Program, which handles Canada's threat reduction activities in Russia and the Former Soviet Union.  The Ukraine and Canada are also partners in the Global Initiative to Combat Nuclear Terrorism, which includes some 75 nations committed to expanding and accelerating the development of partnership capacity to combat the global threat of nuclear terrorism.

Under a 2005 Implementing Agreement between the U.S. and Ukraine, NNSA's Second Line of Defense (SLD) program is working with ASBGS to provide radiation detection equipment at border crossings and other points of entry, conduct training, and hold technical workshops.  As part of a 2007 agreement between the U.S. and Canada , DFAIT contributed $4.5 million toward NNSA's nonproliferation projects in Ukraine, including the purchase of the radiation detection equipment for Kyiv Boryspil Airport.

United States Ambassador to Ukraine William Taylor, NNSA Principal Assistant Deputy Administrator for Defense Nuclear Nonproliferation Kenneth Baker, NNSA Assistant Deputy Administrator for International Material Protection and Cooperation David Huizenga, Head of the Administration of the State Border Guard Service of Ukraine Army General Mykola Lytvyn, Canada's Director General for Global Partnership Troy Lulashnyk, and the Canadian Ambassador to Ukraine Daniel Caron all attended the commissioning ceremony.

NNSA's SLD program works with foreign governments at border crossings, airports, seaports and other points of entry to install specialized radiation detection equipment to detect smuggled nuclear and other radioactive materials.  NNSA has installed similar equipment at over 230 sites around the world.

Established by Congress in 2000, NNSA is a semi-autonomous agency within the U.S. Department of Energy responsible for enhancing national security through the military application of nuclear science.  NNSA maintains and enhances the safety, security, reliability and performance of the U.S. nuclear weapons stockpile without nuclear testing; works to reduce global danger from weapons of mass destruction; provides the U.S. Navy with safe and effective nuclear propulsion; and responds to nuclear and radiological emergencies in the U.S. and abroad.

Media contact(s):
NNSA Public Affairs (202) 586-7371