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United States. Congress. Senate. Committee on Gove.

The Export reorganization act, 1975 : hearings before the Committee on Government Operations, United States Senate, Ninety-fourth Congress, first session, April 24, 30, and May 1, 1975 online

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Online LibraryUnited States. Congress. Senate. Committee on GoveThe Export reorganization act, 1975 : hearings before the Committee on Government Operations, United States Senate, Ninety-fourth Congress, first session, April 24, 30, and May 1, 1975 → online text (page 21 of 47)
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standing would permit the United States, consistent with
its national policy, to veto the use of the material
in or for a nuclear explosive device. India understands this
U.S. policy. In addition, IAEA safeguards are aoplied at Tarapur
and we have no reason to believe that India has violated
its safeguard agreements. In view of all these considerations,
we believe the continued supply of special nuclear material
for use in the Tarapur project to be consistent with our
Agreement for Cooperation, our commitments under the NPT, and the
peaceful application of atomic energy for civil purposes.
Itefusal to supply such material, in the absence of evidence
of Indian non-compliance with its commitments, would in effect
constitute an abrogation of the obligations the US has under-
taken in the Agreement with India.



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l.d The United States was aware of India's interest in, and its

capability for developing, nuclear explosive devices. Indian

officals had indicated on a nunfoer of occasions

that India was studying the usefulness of nuclear explosives.

However, at no time did India reveal that it was actually

developing nuclear explosives or that it had plans

to detonate a device in May, 1974.

The United States has made it clear on a number of
occasions that it considers the technology for making
peaceful nuclear explosive devices to be indistinguishable
from the technology of making nuclear weapons. On March 1, 1972
the US Itepresentative to the IAEA Board of Governors placed
en the record the understanding that the use of any material
or equipment supplied by the United States was precluded under
our bilateral agreements for cooperation; and the understanding
inherent in the safeguards agreements related to such cooperation
agreements that the IAEA would verify, inter alia, that
safeguarded material was not used for any nuclear explosive
device.



219



Question 2 Article 8f of the U.S. Agreement for Cooperation with

South Africa states that the highly enriched uranium we

are supplying South Africa for its research reactor shall

at no time be in excess of the quantity needed to load

the reactor, plus an ad d itional quantity which both nations

agree "is necessary for the efficient and continuous operation"

of the reactor. '

Data supplied by ERDA last week shows that even though South
Africa's Safari I research reactor requires only 30 pounds
of highly enriched uranium for refueling each year, our exports
have resulted in an inventory of nearly 100 pounds. That leaves
a surplus of about 70 pounds, or enough for about 5 nuclear
weapons. Furthermore, an additional 56 pounds is on order
from the U.S., and yet another 56-pound order is anticipated,
for a total of 112 pounds, or enough for 8 more nuclear weapons.

(a) How does ERDA justify these large amounts of surplus
weapons-grade uranium as being "necessary for the
efficient and continuous operation" of South Africa's
research reactor?

(b) Haven't we provided South Africa with a ready supply
•of weapons materials, should it decide some day that
it needs to use it for military purposes?



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(c) Which agencies have participated in the decisions on
how much enriched uranium to export to South Africa
over the years?

Answer 2. a Operation of the Safari reactor requires a partial reload

of fuel every three weeks and therefore requires an adequate
working stock of fuel in order to assure an efficient and
continuous operation, as provided for in the Agreement for
Cooperation .

Over the last 10 years the U.S. has supplied a total of
199.4 pounds of highW enriched uranium* to South Africa
for fueling the Safari-I research reactor. 75.5 pounds of
this uranium has been returned and approximately 37 pounds
has been burned up in the reactor; hence, the inventory
remaining in South Africa is about 87 pounds of uranium.
In March of this year, this inventory included approximately
41 pounds of enriched uranium contained in 130 irradiated
fuel elements in the cooling pond. This irradiated fuel
must remain in the cooling pond for a certain period of time
where decay of short-lived fission products can be accomodated
and the fuel cooled sufficiently before it can be shipped.
The reactor itself requires about 30 pounds of enriched uranium
per year for continuous operation. This leaves approximately

*It contains 180.2 pounds of the isotope U-235 or is approximately 90% enriched.



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16 pounds of uranium fuel in reserve which is sufficient
for about 6 months of reactor operation. With this type
of reactor operating en a full schedule, it is normal practice
to maintain a one-year's supply of fresh fuel at all times.
The United States followed this practice on the Oak Ridge
Research Jteactor, the Materials Test Reactor and the
Engineering Test Reactor. Thus the quantity of fabricated
fuel on hand in South Africa is consistent with the assured
and efficient supply of fabricated fuel and the continuous
operation of this reactor.

Approximately 30 pounds of enriched uranium in the form

of fabricated fuel is expected to be exported by mid 1975

under an existing license. NRC has also received a license

application to export an additional 56 pounds of uranium

in the form of fabricated fuel elements. (Fabrication will

take place in the united States) . These quantifies are consistent

with normal fuel fabrication practices since orders are placed

well in advance and are generally contingent upon the export

authorization. Orders are typically placed a. year or more

in advance of delivery to provide time for f abrication ,

shipment and licensing delays and to allow fabrication to

be undertaken on a reasonable scale. The application for

export of the 56 pounds of uranium will be given appropriate

review.



222



Answer 2.b The highly enriched uranium being supplied to South Africa
is shipped as fabricated fuel elements. The uranium in
these fuel elements is contained in an aluminum/uranium alloy
with more than 80 percent aluminum. The highly enriched
uranium in this form is not directly useable in a nuclear
explosive and would require chemical separation. As can
be seen from the response to (a) above, most of the fuel
provided to South Africa has a] ready been utilized in the
reactor, is therefore irradiated and hence is not available
as "a ready supply of weapons material" without major chemical
reprocessing. Such reprocessing for the South African fuel
can only be performed in facilities acceptable both
to South Africa and the United States upon a joint
determination that safeguards may be effectively applied.

Any use of U.S. -supplied material for military purposes,
(including use in any nuclear explosive device) would be a
violation of our agreement for cooperation. It should also
be noted that the South Africans have their own pilot
uranium enrichment plant and have recently announced plans
for the construction of a camercial scale facility.



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Answer 2.c The quantities of enriched uranium authorized for supply to
South Africa have been a^idressed in the AgreeiTEnt for
Cooperation concluded in 1957 and amended in 1962, 1967 and
1974. This agreement and the amendments were developed
by the AEC and the Department of State, approved by the
President and submitted to the Congress as required by
Section 123 of the Atomic Energy Act. The amounts of uranium
actually delivered pursuant to these agreements were
agreed upon by the AEC based on the operational needs
of the reactor.



224

Question 3. "What restrictions, if any, does a license to export 100,000
pounds of low-enriched uranium reactor fuel to South Korea
place on reprocessing of the 1,500 pounds of plutonium that
will be contained in the spent fuel?

(a) What is to prevent South Korea from importing a
reprocessing plant frcm another exporting nation,
like France, or arranging for reprocessing of its
plutonium in a non-NPT country like South Africa?"

Answer if the 100,000 pounds of low-enriched fuel were to be

used for the initial core of a 600 M-fe reactor, the total
quantity of plutonium produced would be on the order of
600 pounds over a period of 3 to 4 years and would be
contained in highly irradiated fuel elemants. If the 100,000
pounds were for three annual reloads, the plutonium produced would
be on the order of 900 pounds over a period of three years
and would also be contained in highly irradiated fuel elemsnts.



The restriction governing reprocessing of U.S. -supplied
enriched uranium to South Koraa is established in the U.S.-
Korean Agreement for Cooperation. The agreement provides that
reprocessing shall take place in facilities "acceptable to the
Parties", i.e., to the United States and South Korea. Nuclear



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material export lioenses are issued pursuant to the
agreement, and only after written assurance is received
from the Government of Korea that all conditions of the
agreement will be applicable. Thus the requirement with
respect to reprocessing is fully applicable to the export
license.

South Korea is now an NPT party and is committed not
to manufacture or to otherwise acquire weapons or other
nuclear explosive devices or to seek or receive assistance
in the manufacture of nuclear weapons or other nuclear
explosive devices. Moreover, its comtdtirents under the NPT
also require the application of safeguards on all source
or special fissionable material in all peaceful nuclear
activities within the territory of South Korea, under its
jurisdiction, or carried out under its control anywhere.

Thus, as an NPT party, any reprocessing obtained by South Korea,
regardless of its source, would have to be subject to safe-
guards, and any reprocessing of US supplied material would
be subject to U.S. approval as indicated above.

There is nothing to prevent Korea from importing a reprocessing
plant if it can find a willing exporter, or attempting
eventually to construct its own facilities. The reprocessing
of U.S. -supplied enriched uranium fuel from any Korean plant,



226



however, would have to be in accordance with the requirements
of the U.S. -Korean Agreement for Oooperaticn. In addition
to the above noted condition in the agreement regarding
reprocessing, US approval of retransfers of US-supplied
material from Korea to other countries is required, and re-
transfer of plutonium produced in SNM supplied by the U.S.
can occur only if the recipient has an agreement of cooperation
with the U.S. or otherwise agrees to safeguards acceptable
to the United States.

It should be noted also that parties to the NPT have

undertaken not to supply to any non-nuclear weapon state

equipment especially designed for the processing or production

of SNM, unless the nuclear material will be subject to

IAEA safeguards. France is not an NFT party, but it has announced

that it will act as though it were.



227

Question 4 . What safeguards arrangements to pre^>ent theft will apply to
a licensed export to West Germany of nearly 140 pounds of
highly enriched uranium for fabricaticn into reactor fuel.

In what ways did the U.S. consider recent terrorist activities
in West Germany and design special safeguards to deal with the
potential threat?



Answer The United States has reviewed West German physical security arrange-
ments to prevent theft of the 45.11 kg of highly enriched
uranium scheduled for export to the Federal Republic of
Germany for fabrication into reactor fuel. An ERDA Physical
Security Review Team has met with FR3 officials and visited
facilities. The safeguard arrangements provide protection
during transport, storage, fabrication and utilization and
include a variety of physical security measures which provide
a system of protection in depth. ERDA, is the process of
analyzing these arrangements, and only after the adequacy of
safeguards provisions is determined, will a recommendation
regarding the export be made.

Daring bilateral discussions held in this country and during
a recent visit to FRG installations by an ERDA Physical Security
Review Team, the U.S. and FRG have discussed the nature of
potential threats, as well as appropriate physical security
measures to cope with these threats.



228

Question 5 You state that the US has done more to establish a workable
structure of international safeguards than any other nation.
Why didn't we take advantage of the role we played for many
years, as the free world's sole source of enriched uranium
fuel, to influence other nations to establish a strict,
uniform system of physical security safeguards?

(a) Why have we waited until now - as we are about to lose
that monopoly - to seek the establishment of an inter-
national convention on physical security? Isn't this
an example of "too little, too late"?

Answer The US has played the major role in the development of a

workable structure for international safeguards . Since
President Eisenhower initiated the Atoms for Peace Program,
the US has pursued a safeguards program initially through
the provisions of our bilateral Agreements for Cooperation
and subsequently through the development of the IAEA safeguards
program. The prime objective of these programs has been the
deterrence and detection of diversion of nuclear materials to
prevent the national proliferation of nuclear weapons.

Physical security, on the other hand, is fundamentally a
national responsibility, and an essential part of each country's
national safeguards system, is physical protection. The US has
for years worked with other countries in the development of
national physical security systems to prevent the subnational
theft and sabotage of nuclear materials and facilities. The US



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promoted and assisted in the developirent and publication
of " Itecoirmendations for the Physical Protection of Nuclear
toterial" which was issued under IAEA sponsorship in 1972.
A review and updating of that publication has just been
completed by a staff of experts frcm the US and other
nations.

We are also discussing with others the possibilitv of
establishing an international convention on physical security.

Physical security systems will necessarily vary from country
to country depending upon the nature of the facilities, the
nuclear materials involved, the nature of the threat, and
the laws of the country.

In the past, physical security concerns on an international
basis were not as great as they are today because of the
limited quantities of highly enriched uranium and plutonium
available in civil programs. Physical security measures
were designed to provide the protection required by the nature
of the potential threats. In recent years, greater emphasis
has been given to physical security domestically and in orher
countries as a result of the increased availability and
shipment of quantities cf nuclear materials that could potentially
be used in a nuclear explosive and as a result of the apparent
upsurge in organized subnatianal terrorist activity.



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The US has not found it necessary to use its leverage
as the principal supplier of enriched uranium to influence
other nations to establish adequate physical security
systems, since we have found a worldwide awareness and
interest in the need for effective physical security
of nuclear materials.



231

Question 6 . You describe Congress as a partner in developing nuclear export

policy by approving or disapproving proposed executive agreements
for cooperation with other nations.

Yet, these agreements are mostly prc-fonra; the real export
policy is made through the licenses for export of nuclear
equipment and materials that are issued under these executive
agreements.

(a) Hiat role does Congress play in approving or disapproving
these nuclear export licenses?

Answer The Atomic Energy Act of 1954, as amended, provides for a

program of international cooperation on the peaceful applications
of atomic energy under the conditions and requirements set
forth therein. Fundamentally, the Act establishes the Agreement
for Cooperation as the framework governing the implementation
of such cooperation and, pursuant to the Act, the existence of
such an agreement is a prerequisite before export of special
nuclear material or reactors to the country concerned may be
licensed.

Section 123 of the Act establishes the requirements for con-
cluding the Agreements, which includes approval by the
President and submission to the Congress. Pursuant to this
section, the Agreements must include terms, conditions,
duration, nature, scope of cooperation, a guaranty by the
cooperating party that security safeguards and standards as
set forth in the agreement for cooperation will be maintained
and, except for military agreements, a guaranty that any



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material to be transferred pursuant to the agreement will not
be used for atomic weapons, or for research on or development
of atomic weapons or for any other military purpose.

Each specific export transaction may take place only if pro-
vided for in the US or IAEA Agreement for Cooperation. For example, an
export of highly enriched uranium may only take place if the
Agreement provides for transfer of such material and if the
standard requirement for specific U.S. approval (established
in the Agreements) has been satisfied. Further, an export of

a power reactor may only take plaoe if the pertinent Agreement
provides for cooperation in power applications of atomic

energy. Additionally, an export of special nuclear material

may take place only for a purpose authorized, and within

guaranties, provided in the Agreement.

Each application for export is reviewed on a case-by-case basis
to determine whether or not it is in accord with the existing
Agreement for Cooperation and with existing U.'S. policies and to
determine that the proposed export would not be inimical to the
c u ' wc n defense and security of the United States. Further,
written assurances are obtained from the Government concerned
that the export will be accepted under all terms and conditions
of the Agreement and that the cciisignee is authorized to receive
and possess the material proposed for export.



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Thus, while the Congress does not beooite directly involved in the
approval or disapproval of a specific nuclear export license applicaticr
it does have a major role, through its approval of Agreements
of Cooperation, in establishing the policy framework governing the
issuance of export licenses to each individual country including
the nature and adequacy of safeguards.



234

Question 7 Last week, General Giller testified that ERDA had no problem
discussing with other nations the need for improved physical
security over nuclear materials and facilities. He mentioned
that nine countries sent representatives here for such
discussions. Please name the nine countries?

(a) Which countries have we found to be uncooperative on
the subject of physical security

(b) Has the United States taken any corrective steps with
respect to our exports to these uncooperative countries?



Answer The U.S. initially invited Canada, the Federal Republic
of Germany, the United Kingdom, France, Israel, the
Netherlands, Japan, Euratom and Egypt to participate in
bilateral discussions concerning physical security of
nuclear materials and facilities. Others have subsequently
been Invited. To date, discussions have been held with
Canada, the Federal Republic of Germany, the United Kingdom,
France, Israel, the Netherlands and Euratom. In addi tion,
Japan, Sweden and Italy have accepted invitations and
discussions with these countries are scheduled for the near
future. We have found no country to be uncooperative in
this matter. Gn the contrary, we have observed a genuine
and active interest in all countries which we have contacted.



235

Qu estion 8 . Hew can we be sure that international safeguards are acceptable
to the U.S. in view of the fact that specific safeguards
arrangements with respect to U.S. — exported nuclear equipment
and materials are negotiated in secret by the IAEA and the
recipient country? How can we be sure such safeguards are
acceptable when apparent violations are not reported directly
to us by the IAEA?

Answer The United States has a detailed knowledge of and has given

its approval of the IAEA safeguards system. The safeguards arrange-
ments negotiated between the IAEA and specific countries go into
technical details about the operations of the safeguarded facilities
which may be of proprietary interest to the country. Such information u
protected by the IAEA Statute and by the Safeguards Agreements
themselves. The U.S. has supported the inclusion of this
right to have proprietary information kept confidential as
being a neoessary feature of an effective international
safeguards program in order to assure all countries that
the IAEA will not be used as a vehicle for supplying proprietary
information to competitors. A sample copy of an IAEA Safeguards
Design Information Questionnaire is attached, which demonstrates the
kind of details necessary for safeguards planning. (You will note
that this questionnaire is handled as confidential by the Agency
once the information is filled in.)



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Nevertheless , the U.S. does have information about the
technical operation of IAEA safeguards. The U.S. has
participated extensively in the development of the IAEA's
safeguards system and continues to be broadly involved in
technical meetings dealing with all aspects of the program.
Eor example, in 1975 at least 17 U.S. experts in various
areas of safeguards systems and technology will have
participated in safeguards consultants and advisory meetings
with IAEA staff members on subjects ranging from instrumentation,
to AEP application, review of the Agency's Safeguards Technical
Manual, and safeguards statistical techniques. A more
detailed report of this U.S. participation is being submitted
as backup to my April 30 testimony. In addition, the U.S.
Mission to the IAEA in Vienna is in almost daily contact with
the Agency an safeguards matters. Finally, of the current 72
professional safeguards staff members in the IAEA, 9 are from
the U.S. These individuals have lengthy experience and excellent
qualifications in the safeguards area which they bring to bear
in the development and application of IAEA safeguards.

With this background, the U.S. is familiar with the technical
features of IAEA safeguards, including the instruments,
techniques and procedures available to IAEA inspectors. The
U.S. is also aware, through published reports, of the general



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level of effort the Agency applies to safeguards, e.g. ,
manpower, budget, nurrber of annual inspections, nurrfoer and
type of inspected facilities, quantity and kind of safe-
guarded material, etc. In addition, the Agency provides us
with annual reports of the specific quantities of nuclear
material subject to Agency safeguards pursuant to certain
of our trilateral safeguards Agreements.

The release of additional information is an area of policy which
is under continual examination and development in order to assure
that safeguards techniques are being applied effectively.

Finally, even though the IAEA does not reveal the details of its

safeguards agreements, it does have an obligation to report

serious incidents of non-compliance with any safeguards agreement

to its Board of Governors, of which the U.S. is a member. If the

IAEA is unable to verify that safeguarded material has not been

diverted, the agency may request the State to take certain actions to
permit verification within a reasonable time, or the IAEA

Board may initiate non-compliance procedures. These

procedures include notification to member states of the

IAEA as well as the UN Security Council and General Assembly.

Thus the United States, as a Board member, would receive early

information of apparent violations and would participate in any

Board determination of non-compliance and decisions regarding

actions to be taken.



238

0u=sticn 9. "Do agreements with non-NPT nations Like India and South

Africa specifically ban peaceful nuclear explosions? How do
we distinguish between a peaceful nuclear explosion and one
for weapons purposes?



Answer The U.S. Agreements for Cooperation with India and South

Africa, lite those with other countries, ban the use of
U.S. -supplied material and equipment for development of
nuclear weapons or any other military purpose. The technology
of making nuclear weapons and peaceful nuclear explosive



Online LibraryUnited States. Congress. Senate. Committee on GoveThe Export reorganization act, 1975 : hearings before the Committee on Government Operations, United States Senate, Ninety-fourth Congress, first session, April 24, 30, and May 1, 1975 → online text (page 21 of 47)