Seoul Nu­clear Se­cur ity Sum­mit: Ex­pec­ta­tions

The Diplomatic Insight - - Reports -

The "2012 Seoul Nu­clear Se­cu­rity Sum­mit", which will be held in Seoul on 26 -27 March 2012, will be the largest sum­mit in the se­cu­rity field that dis­cusses in­ter­na­tional co­op­er­a­tive mea­sures to pro­tect nu­clear ma­te­ri­als and fa­cil­i­ties from ter­ror­ist groups, with par­tic­i­pa­tion from more than 53 heads of state and in­ter­na­tional or­ga­ni­za­tions. The main is­sues to be dis­cussed at the Sum­mit will be as fol­lows.

Co­op­er­a­tive mea­sures to combat the threat of nu­clear ter­ror­ism. Pro­tec­tion of nu­clear ma­te­ri­als and re­lated fa­cil­i­ties. Preven­tion of il­licit traf­fick­ing of nu­clear ma­te­ri­als. The ob­jec­tive of the sum­mit is to high­light the pos­si­bil­ity of nu­clear ter­ror­ism, which be­came a real threat af­ter 9/11, and which in­creased the im­por­tance of strength­en­ing nu­clear se­cu­rity to pre­vent nu­clear ma­te­ri­als from be­ing mis­used by ter­ror­ist groups. There is a need to rec­og­nize the im­por­tance of nu­clear se­cu­rity at the sum­mit level and seek co­op­er­a­tion, as the threat of nu­clear ter­ror­ism can­not be ad­dressed by a sin­gle na­tion. Pres­i­dent Obama stated in his 2009 Prague speech that nu­clear ter­ror­ism is a se­ri­ous threat to in­ter­na­tional se­cu­rity, and expressed his will to lead global ef­forts to pro­tect nu­clear ma­te­ri­als as part of his plan to re­al­ize his vi­sion of a "world free of nu­clear weapons.” The first Nu­clear Se­cu­rity Sum­mit, the largest in­ter­na­tional meet­ing re­lat­ing to the nu­clear is­sue, was held in­wash­ing­ton in April 2010. The sum­mit was at­tended by lead­ers from 47 states and 3 in­ter­na­tional or­ga­ni­za­tions (UN, EU, IAEA), in­clud­ing the P5 na­tions (nu­clear weapons states) and states not party to the NPT, such as In­dia, Pak­istan, and Is­rael. The lead­ers dis­cussed plans to strengthen nu­clear se­cu­rity by pre­vent­ing the mis­use of nu­clear ma­te­ri­als by non-state ac­tors. The Repub­lic of Korea, as host of the sec­ond Nu­clear Se­cu­rity Sum­mit to be held in March 2012, will play a lead­ing role in co­or­di­nat­ing par­tic­i­pat­ing coun­tries' views on key nu­clear se­cu­rity is­sues and lead dis­cus­sions on the draft­ing of the 'Seoul Com­mu­niqué,' which­will be the final doc­u­ment of the Seoul Sum­mit. The se­lec­tion of Korea as host of the 2012 Sum­mit re­flects the in­ter­na­tional com­mu­nity's recog­ni­tion of its world­class nu­clear tech­nol­ogy, its com­pli­ance with NPT obli­ga­tions and its ex­em­plary use of nu­clear en­ergy for peace­ful pur­poses. The host­ing of the Nu­clear Se­cu­rity Sum­mit on the Korean penin­sula will be highly sig­nif­i­cant given its im­pli­ca­tions within the con­text of de­nu­cle­ariza­tion.

*Cour­tesy­byem­bassy­ofre­pub­li­cofko­rea.

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