Nunn-Lugar programme destroys more Soviet era nuke material

Publish date: October 21, 2008

The US Cooperative Threat Reduction programme last month deactivated six former Soviet strategic nuclear warheads, eliminated four ICBMs and destroyed six mobile ICBM launchers, the office of US Senator Richard Lugar (R-Ind.) announced in a statement Monday.

Since being established in 1991 to secure and eliminate weapons of mass destruction in the former Soviet Union, the Nunn-Lugar initiative has deactivated 7,298 strategic nuclear warheads and destroyed 724 ICBMs, 496 ICBM silos, 137 mobile ICBM launchers, 631 submarine-launched ballistic missiles, 456 SLBM launchers, 31 ballistic missile-capable submarines, 155 strategic bombers, 906 nuclear air-to-surface missiles and 194 nuclear test tunnels, according to Defense Threat Reduction agency statistics.

The programme has also secured 411 nuclear-weapon train shipments, increased security measures at 17 nuclear weapon storage facilities and built 16 biological agent monitoring stations. It removed all nuclear weapons from Ukraine, Kazakhstan and Belarus, nations that inherited held the world’s third, fourth and eighth largest nuclear arsenals after the Soviet Union’s collapse.

By sponsoring the International Science and Technology Centers, the Nunn-Lugar program has helped to provide civilian opportunities for 58,000 former weapons scientists. The International Proliferation Prevention Programme has involved 14,000 former weapons personnel in 750 projects and established 580 technology-sector positions, said Lugar in his release.