Ukraine: small amount of radioactive material stolen : LUSENET : Grassroots Information Coordination Center (GICC) : One Thread

I don't know if this theft is truly unusual--there have been multiple aricles in the past few years about poor security of materials in the former Soviet Union (see archives at the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists, I infer from the article below that the stolen material is not what would be able to be used for a nuclear explosion, rather it could be used to directly contaminate a small area. (There has been at least one serious threat in the past by a rebel group that it would release radioative materials in Russia, and they backed the threat up by planting material in a Moscow park.)


Headline: Radioactive substance stolen from MAP

Source: Ukrainian News, 11 April 2001


KYIV, Apr. 11 (Ukrainian News) - The theft of a radioactive substance from the Mykolaiv Alumina Plant was uncovered at 11:30 p.m. on Sunday, the Emergencies Ministry announced Tuesday.

According to the ministry’s press service, the substance can contaminate an area of 100 square meters if opened.

According to an official at the Mykolaiv regional administration's emergencies department, representatives of the Emergency Ministry, the State Security Service, the police, and the factory are presently searching for the material.

According to the MAP source, it would be difficult for a non-specialist to open the container, in which the substance is stored.

The radioactive substance is used in some types of measuring instruments and equipment.

-- Andre Weltman (, April 13, 2001

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