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IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Release No: 192-97
April 23, 1997

ADDITIONAL FUNDS ADDED TO COOPERATIVE THREAT REDUCTION PROGRAM IN RUSSIA

A U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) delegation recently visited Moscow to add additional funding to the Cooperative Threat Reduction (CTR) Program in Russia. The delegation also reviewed the status of ongoing CTR projects.

The delegation included the Deputy Assistant to the Secretary of Defense for CTR Programs Roland Lajoie, Special Coordinator for Cooperative Threat Reduction Laura Holgate, and a team of DoD experts. Holgate concluded and signed four amendments to current CTR agreement with Russian Ministries which are partners with DoD in the development of CTR projects.

These four amendments apply additional funds in the amount of USD 209.3 million in FY97 CTR funds and USD 5 million in previously unobligated FY96 CTR funds for a total of USD 214.3 million in new funds applied to CTR agreements with Russia. The following amendments were signed during the period April 8 through April 11, 1997:

- The value of CTR assistance to the Weapons Protection, Control, and Accounting Program was increased by USD 15 million to a total of USD 116 million by the signing of an amendment to the Nuclear Weapons Storage Security agreement by Holgate and Lieutenant General Valynkin of the Ministry of Defense (MoD).

- An amendment to the CTR agreement providing assistance in the construction of a storage facility for fissile material derived from dismantled nuclear weapons was signed by Holgate and Deputy Minister Makarov of the Ministry of Atomic Energy (MinAtom) to increase the value of CTR assistance from USD 84 million to USD 150 million.

- Holgate signed an amendment to the Destruction of Chemical Weapons Agreement

with Mr. Syutkin of the President's Committee on Conventional Problems of Chemical and Biological Weapons of the Russian Federation to increase the value of CTR assistance from USD 68 million to USD 136.5 million. This amendment also delegated responsibility to MoD to act on behalf of the Russian federation regarding the Russian organophosphorus agent-filled artillery munitions destruction facility project.

- An amendment to the Elimination of Strategic Offensive Arms Agreement was signed by Holgate and Minister of Defense Industries Pak to increase the value of CTR assistance from USD 231 million to USD 295.8 million. This includes USD 5 million of previously unobligated FY96 CTR funds.

Through the Cooperative Threat Reduction (CTR) program, the U.S. has provided assistance in the form of equipment, services, and technical advice to Russia, Belarus, Kazakstan, and Ukraine used in the dismantlement of strategic delivery systems and in the consolidation of nuclear weapons of the former Soviet Union. The bulk of this assistance is implemented by the U.S. Department of Defense as a program not of altruistic charity, but based on hard-nosed considerations of national and international security. By helping to eliminate and secure former Soviet weapons of mass destruction, DoD and its partners ensure that the requirements of the hard-won treaties negotiated in recent years are met, that weapons are controlled in a safe and secure manner, and that non- proliferation goals are maintained.

Over the last five years, the CTR program has notified over USD 1.8 billion to Congress for use in Russia, Belarus, Kazakstan, and Ukraine. Over USD 1.2 billion has been obligated for this program, and spending rates have increased steadily since the program's inception in FY92. The addition of USD 209.3 million in FY97 CTR funds raises the amount of CTR funds applied to Russian projects to slightly over USD 1.1 billion.

Lajoie and the team of DoD experts followed up the signing with a comprehensive review of the status of ongoing CTR projects with Russian counterparts at MoD, MinAtom, Ministry of Defense Industries and the President's Committee on Conventional Problems of Chemical and Biological Weapons. DoD and Russian technical experts meet very routinely both in Russia and in the United States to evaluate Russian requirements, to develop CTR assistance projects, and to monitor project implementation.

DoD and the Russian MoD have been working together since 1992 under the Weapons Protection, Control, and Accounting (WPC&A) Program in the joint development of projects which have provided armored blankets, security upgrade kits for nuclear weapons railcars, emergency response equipment, and 150 supercontainers to enhance security during the transportation of nuclear weapons, and which will provide a computerized weapons stockpile system, security upgrades at weapons storage sites, and a drug and alcohol monitoring program for the weapons guard force in order to upgrade security at MoD weapons storage sites.

In partnership with the Ministry of Atomic Energy, DoD is assisting in the construction of a storage facility for fissile material derived from dismantled nuclear weapons. Located at the Mayak Production Facility in Chelyabinsk, the Fissile Material Storage Facility is currently under construction and will be able to start accepting fissile material containers for storage in early 1999. It will be able to store 50,000 fissile material containers.

Under the Chemical Weapons Destruction Program, DoD is working with the President's Committee on Conventional Problems of Chemical and Biological Weapons and the Ministry of Defense in the development of a chemical weapons destruction process and munitions processing equipment, upgrading a central analytical laboratory, and the eventual construction of a chemical weapons destruction facility.

Under the Strategic Offensive Arms Elimination Program, DoD in cooperation with Russia's Ministry of Defense Industries has developed a number of projects which assist Russia with strategic offensive arms elimination including the dismantlement of: long- range bombers, intercontinental ballistic missiles and missile launchers, and submarine launched ballistic missile launchers and strategic missile submarines, and the elimination of liquid rocket fuel. Thanks in part to CTR support for these projects, Russia is well ahead of schedule in eliminating delivery systems as required in the START I Treaty.