Trilateral Agreement Highlights Nuclear Security Summit
By Army Sgt. 1st Class Tyrone C. Marshall Jr.
American Forces Press Service
WASHINGTON, March 26, 2012 The United States, Canada and Mexico have completed a joint nuclear security project to convert the fuel in Mexico’s research reactor from highly enriched uranium to low-enriched uranium.
Representatives from the three nations presented the project’s completion today at the Nuclear Security Summit in Seoul, South Korea.
The project was initiated at the Nuclear Security Summit here two years ago and the three countries worked closely with the International Atomic Energy Agency in carrying it out, officials said. The full conversion of the reactor supports the goal of minimizing the use of highly enriched uranium for civilian purposes, they added, and by converting its research nuclear reactor, Mexico has contributed to nonproliferation.
“With this decision, Mexico reaffirms its commitment to building a world free of the nuclear threat,” Mexican President Felipe Calderon said. “Each country must do its share to reach a safer North America and a safer planet. This is a clear example of the significant work we can do together in the North American region.”
President Barack Obama, who is in Seoul, South Korea, for the Nuclear Security Summit, praised the effort.
“I would like to thank Mexico, Canada and the IAEA for their support of our joint nuclear security efforts,” Obama said. “Our strong trilateral partnership, supported by the IAEA, has made our people safer and advanced our international nuclear security effort leading into the Seoul Summit.”
Canadian Prime Minister Steven Harper said the project’s completion demonstrates concrete steps countries can take collectively.
“We will continue to work with the United States and Mexico to enhance nuclear security in our region and worldwide,” Harper said.