Soviet Nuclear Weapons:

U.S. Efforts to Help Former Soviet Republics Secure and Destroy Weapons

T-NSIAD-93-5: Published: Mar 9, 1993. Publicly Released: Mar 9, 1993.

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GAO discussed U.S. efforts to implement the Soviet Nuclear Threat Reduction Act, focusing on U.S.: (1) dismantlement assistance; (2) support for fissile material storage; (3) options for plutonium disposition; and (4) efforts to secure the sale of Russian highly enriched uranium (HEU) to the United States. GAO noted that: (1) U.S. efforts to accelerate former Soviet nuclear weapon dismantlement are inhibited by Russia's refusal to allow the United States direct involvement in the dismantlement process; (2) the Department of Defense obligated $303 million to support former Soviet nuclear weapon safety and security and prevent further nuclear proliferation; (3) the United States will assist former republics in destroying their nuclear weapons delivery vehicles and has obligated $90 million to support construction of a fissile material storage facility; (4) the United States had planned to help Russia convert its HEU from weapons to reactor fuel for eventual sale to the United States; and (5) the United States has considered options for plutonium disposition and how best to sell and use Russian HEU, however, formal agreements have not been reached.

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