Obama Addresses the Dangers of Terrorists Getting Hands on Nuclear Material
By: Erin Johnson, Xiro Xone News April 01, 2016
President Barack Obama spoke to more than 50 world leaders at the Nuclear Security Summit today, where he explained the risks of insecure nuclear material finding its way into the hands of terrorists.
“At hundreds of military and civilian facilities around the world, there is still roughly 2,000 tons of nuclear materials and not all of this is properly secured. And just the smallest amount of plutonium, about the size of an apple, could kill and injured hundreds of thousands of innocent people,” Obama said. “It would be a humanitarian, political, economic and environmental catastrophe with global ramifications for decades. It would change our world.”
President Obama noted that in recent years the nations gathered at the NSS had “measurably reduced the risk” of nuclear terrorism, and said “no terrorist group has succeeded thus far in obtaining a nuclear weapon or dirty bomb made of radioactive materials.”
However, he mentioned al-Qaeda’s efforts to obtain nuclear materials as well as the Brussels attackers reportedly videotaping a worker at a Belgian nuclear facility as evidence that nations must double down on their efforts to secure their nuclear material.
“There is no doubt that if these mad men ever got their hands on a nuclear bomb or nuclear material they most certainly would use it to kill as many innocent people as possible,” Obama said.
Obama sternly dismissed as proof of foreign-policy ignorance Trump’s recent suggestion that Japan and South Korea should be allowed to build their own nuclear arsenals, putting him at odds with decades of U.S. policy.
“The person who made the statements doesn't know much about foreign policy or nuclear policy or the Korean peninsula, or the world generally," Obama said, adding that Americans don’t want anyone with such views to occupy the White House.
Later today, President Obama will chair the closing session of the NSS specifically focused on the counter-ISIS campaign.