IAEA aims to strengthen African nuclear security

24 April 2017

The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) this month launched a project to enhance regulatory frameworks for nuclear security in African countries.

The project was launched during a regional workshop in Rabat, Morocco, on 3-7 April. The event - organised by the IAEA in cooperation with the Moroccan Nuclear and Radiological Safety and Security Agency (AMSSNuR) - was attended by 75 participants from 36 countries.

During the meeting, regulators and legal experts from across Africa received information on international instruments for nuclear security, such as IAEA nuclear security guidance; the importance of adequate regulations for physical protection of nuclear material and nuclear facilities, other radioactive material and associated facilities; and regulations for nuclear and other radioactive material out of regulatory control.

The IAEA said enhancing nuclear security globally requires the development and implementation of stringent regulatory procedures at the national level. During the workshop, participants were urged to assess their own legal framework on nuclear security and to identify the current and future steps to be taken by their competent authorities to establish regulations and processes to enhance nuclear security.

The meeting also provided the opportunity to assess gaps in the national regulatory frameworks and to carry out country-specific implementation plans for the development of nuclear security regulations, including interim measures. Support was provided for the drafting of regulations for the physical protection of nuclear and other radioactive materials and associated facilities, transport security, and for the security of nuclear and other radioactive material out of regulatory control.

"The project will continue with tailored training activities on the drafting of nuclear security regulations based on specific country needs, national expert missions and the review of draft regulations," said Raja Abdul Aziz Raja Adnan, director of the IAEA's nuclear security division.

The workshop will be complemented by two sub-regional training courses later this year.

AMSSNuR director general Khammar Mrabit said, "It is widely acknowledged that the threat of nuclear terrorism is real and the response has to be global. Nuclear security is vital for African countries as most of them use radioactive sources that could be used for malicious acts.

Researched and written
by World Nuclear News