COMBATING NUCLEAR SMUGGLING? EXPLORING DRIVERS AND CHALLENGES TO DETECTING NUCLEAR AND RADIOLOGICAL MATERIALS AT MARITIME FACILITIES

This article from the Nonproliferation Review in June says that few studies have examined how these detection systems deployed at strategic locations for the purported purpose of detecting and deterring the smuggling of nuclear and radioactive materials programs are implemented or the operational challenges they face on a day-to-day basis.  The article seeks to address this with a focus on radiation-detection efforts at maritime facilities.  It identifies the factors that influence the planning and use of these systems in this fast-moving environment.  It says that greater consideration should therefore be given to developing international standards and guidance, designing and adopting tools to support key parts of the alarm assessment process, and broader sharing of good practice.  It concludes that it is clearly challenging to effectively deploy radiation-detection systems in maritime border-monitoring efforts and effectiveness varies significantly in various facilities.  At some maritime facilities, security concerns drive a system’s operation, while for others, safety and commercial factors take precedence – meaning differing requirements and approaches.  It says that the fragmented approaches observed throughout the maritime supply chain arguably reduce the effectiveness of the global nuclear-detection architecture in stymying the illicit trafficking of nuclear and radiological materials.  It calls for an increased focus on the importance of combating illicit trafficking, supported by developing and publishing new and updated international guidance documents, exchanging operational best practices, and developing new tools.

https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/10736700.2019.1610256

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Author: raytodd2017

Chartered Legal Executive and former senior manager with Isle of Man Customs and Excise, where I was (amongst other things) Sanctions Officer (for UN/EU sanctions), Export Licensing Officer and Manager of the Legal-Library & Collectorate Support Section

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