Joint U.S.-EC Workshop Strengthens Cooperation To Counter Nuclear Smuggling

Media Note
Office of the Spokesperson
Washington, DC
May 18, 2018

On May 15-17, the United States and the European Commission co-hosted the 2018 Counter Nuclear Smuggling (CNS) Workshop at the European Commission's Joint Research Centre (JRC) in Karlsruhe, Germany.

The workshop brought together some 70 experts from 22 countries and international organizations to discuss significant real-world CNS challenges, review effective CNS strategies, and refine information-sharing mechanisms that support international coordination. Workshop instructors included experts from the JRC, the U.S. Department of State, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the U.S. Department of Energy, INTERPOL, and the International Atomic Energy Agency.

Building on global efforts to keep dangerous nuclear and other radioactive materials out of terrorists’ hands, the 2018 workshop highlighted the following elements of an effective CNS strategy: national plans for coordinating government agencies in responding to nuclear smuggling incidents, nuclear forensics and other technical tools used to investigate and prosecute nuclear smuggling, and opportunities for bilateral and multilateral CNS coordination.

The workshop also gave participants an opportunity to put CNS strategies into practice through an interactive exercise, which emphasized that close coordination between law enforcement investigators, technical experts, and prosecutors; technical tools such as nuclear forensics; and national and bilateral information-sharing mechanisms are essential to effective CNS investigations.