Nuclear weapons are the greatest means of instant wide-scale destruction, and the illegal trafficking of such devices is the focus of a new international conference being held by INTERPOL this week.
The conference is expected to draw some 270 participants from more than 100 countries around the world.
“Countering nuclear smuggling is a matter of international public safety that calls for an equally comprehensive, coordinated response from key global actors,” INTERPOL Secretary General Jürgen Stock said. “As the largest police organization in the world, INTERPOL offers all its member countries with an effective platform to address global security issues, including securing our communities from the global threat that is nuclear smuggling.”
The conference is meant to act as a sort of precursor to the 2016 Nuclear Security Summit to be held in Washington D.C. later this year.
“Nuclear material smuggling is a unique crime in that preventing and responding to it requires scientific and technical expertise in addition to good police work,” Principal Assistant Deputy Administrator for Defense Nuclear Nonproliferation at the U.S. Department of Energy David Huizenga said. “We also know that the threat of nuclear terrorism is real, and as terrorist threats continue to evolve and our adversaries become increasingly sophisticated, our efforts to counter these threats are more critical than ever.”