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Taken Question
Office of the Spokesman
Washington, DC
November 30, 2007
Question Taken at November 29, 2007 Daily Press Briefing

Slovakia Uranium Seizure

Question:   Can we confirm reports of arrests in Slovakia of individuals attempting to sell uranium enriched enough to be used in a dirty bomb? Can we provide details such as origin of material, grade and quantity? What is US reaction?

Answer:   The Department of State is aware of the reports regarding the arrest of three individuals with uranium in Slovakia and is following up with Slovak authorities. We have also seen more recent reports that the material involved is not weapons-grade.

The United States takes seriously all reports of attempted illicit trafficking in nuclear or radioactive materials and applauds the actions of Slovakian and Hungarian authorities to arrest the traffickers and secure the smuggled uranium.

The United States works with a number of governments worldwide to reduce the number of facilities which hold nuclear material and to secure those which remain. Several robust U.S. nuclear material security, detection, and assistance programs in the region help secure nuclear material and prevent illicit trafficking.

Further questions about the arrest and seizure should be directed to the Slovak or Hungarian governments.

2007/1068


Released on November 29, 2007

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