Michelle Cann and Kenneth N. Luongo
The Nuclear Security Summit (NSS) process has helped begin a dialogue among more than 50 countries about strengthening the global nuclear security regime. The states’ national responsibility for protecting the nuclear and radioactive materials on their territory has been continually emphasized in all summit documents. But there is also a global responsibility for the security of these materials.
Insecure nuclear and radioactive materials in any country present a grave risk to the international community. National measures are the first line of defense against theft, diversion, or misuse of nuclear and radioactive sources, but the consequences of their failure have significant international implications. Unfortunately, the international infrastructure for preventing unauthorized releases of radiation is underdeveloped. It is largely a voluntary patchwork of limited multilateral treaties and agreements. This system fails to adequately capture the responsibility that states have to one another and the global public to prevent nuclear and radiological terrorism.
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