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Wed Sep 28 02:04:42 CAT 2016

SA lags in nuclear security

Graeme Hosken | 12 July, 2012 00:01
Koeberg nuclear power station. File photo.
Image by: RUVAN BOSHOFF

A new report co-authored by a senior Harvard academic has shed light on some of the security vulnerabilities of South Africa's nuclear facilities.

Co-written by Harvard University associate professor and nuclear security specialist Matthew Bunn, Progress on Securing Nuclear Weapons and Materials: The Four-Year Effort and Beyond, examines nuclear-material security globally.

It reveals that, though South Africa has completed substantial security upgrades at its Pelindaba nuclear facility, and implemented regulations requiring the protection of nuclear sites against threats, these have yet to be formally enforced.

The report states that South Africa has not committed itself to eliminating hundreds of kilograms of weapons-grade highly enriched uranium.

It has yet to ratify an amendment to the Convention on the Physical Protection of Nuclear Material.

The amendment is aimed at improving the physical protection of nuclear material and facilities, and reducing the vulnerability of states to the theft of nuclear material and to nuclear terrorism.

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