The Latest: Obama says US-Russia nuke reductions will go on

AP News
|
Posted: Apr 01, 2016 7:01 PM
The Latest: Obama says US-Russia nuke reductions will go on

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Latest on the global nuclear security summit that President Barack Obama is hosting in Washington (all times local):

6:50 p.m.

President Barack Obama says the U.S. and Russia are unlikely to further reduce their stockpiles of nuclear weapons during the remainder of his presidency. But he says he believes the two countries have put systems in place that will allow for more reductions in the future.

Obama says at the close of a nuclear security summit that Russian President Vladimir Putin has emphasized "military might" instead of disarmament. But Obama says there are still possibilities for progress.

Obama says in the meantime, the world must guard against the proliferation of new, deadlier nuclear weapons.

The president is crediting the U.S. and Russia with abiding by a bilateral arms reduction treaty. He says he's tried to strike the right balance between arms reduction and preserving U.S. nuclear weapons capabilities.

___

6:15 p.m.

President Barack Obama says the world's work to prevent nuclear attacks is "by no means finished."

Obama is speaking at a news conference at the conclusion of a global nuclear security summit. He says world leaders have made "significant, meaningful progress" in securing nuclear materials so terrorists can't get them.

But Obama says there is still a large amount of nuclear and radioactive material that must be secured. He says in some countries, the nuclear arsenal is expanding.

Obama says the dozens of leaders attending agreed to keep strengthening nuclear facilities against cyber-attacks and to bolster defenses against nuclear smuggling.

He says realizing the vision of preventing the spread of nuclear weapons may not happen in his lifetime. But he says the work has begun.

___

5:40 p.m.

More than 50 nations and international organizations are pledging to boost communal efforts to secure nuclear materials. But there won't be any more global summits on the issue in the near future.

The leaders say in a joint communique at the summit's close that this year's meeting will be the last. They're turning to the United Nations, Interpol, the International Atomic Energy Agency and other entities to take over responsibility for the issue.

The leaders say there's more work to prevent nuclear terrorism and promote disarmament, which requires further international cooperation.

__

4 p.m.

President Barack Obama says as the Islamic State group gets squeezed in Iraq and Syria, it will "lash out" elsewhere in the world.

Obama is speaking at the close of a nuclear security summit in Washington. He says the Islamic State is losing territory and its oil infrastructure and says morale among its fighters is declining.

Obama says the group is a threat to all nations. He's noting that almost all the nations participating in the summit have had citizens join IS in Iraq and Syria.

The president says IS has become the world's most active extremist group.

He says the U.S. is already seeing IS spread beyond Iraq and Syria, pointing to recent attacks in Belgium and Turkey.

___

11:40 a.m.

President Barack Obama says there's a persistent and evolving threat of terrorists conducting a nuclear attack.

Obama's speaking at a nuclear security summit in Washington. He says the world has measurably reduced the risk but that reason for concern remains.

Obama says no terrorist group has succeeded in getting a nuclear weapon or dirty bomb. But he says al-Qaida has long sought nuclear materials and that the Islamic State group has used chemical weapons. He says extremists linked to the Paris and Brussels attacks videotaped a senior manager at a Belgian nuclear facility.

Obama says there's no doubt if IS "mad men" got a nuclear bomb or material, they would use it to kill as many people as possible. He says that would be a disaster that would "change our world."

___

11:35 a.m.

The U.S. says Latin America and the Caribbean are now "free" of highly enriched uranium.

In a fact sheet highlighting progress at Friday's Nuclear Security Summit in Washington, the White House praised Argentina for converting its remaining stockpile of the potential bomb-making material into a less dangerous form.

Argentina aborted a nuclear weapons program in the 1980s and has cooperated with the U.S. on uranium stockpiles.

For the final 4 kilograms, the Energy Department helped Argentina's National Atomic Energy Commission dispose of the material in Argentina.

With the project completed, the White House says no country in Latin America or the Caribbean now has more than 1 kilogram of highly enriched uranium. It says that makes the region "free" of the material.

___

11:15 a.m.

The U.S. and Japan are pledging to remove highly enriched uranium from a Japanese research reactor to reduce the risk of theft and nuclear terrorism.

The allies made the announcement Friday at a nuclear security summit in Washington. Their statement does not say when this process would be complete.

The two governments also confirmed they have completed removal of weapons-usable materials from another Japanese research reactor, as agreed in 2014.

Japanese media have already reported that 331 kilograms (730 pounds) of plutonium is now being shipped to the Savannah River Site, a government facility in South Carolina.

But the state's governor, Nikki Haley, has opposed bringing more plutonium to the site, where tons of it is already stored.

___

10:25 a.m.

President Barack Obama says the nuclear deal with Iran has achieved a "substantial success."

Obama is meeting on the sidelines of a nuclear security summit with other members of the U.N. Security Council that negotiated the Iran deal along with the U.S. He says as a result of the deal, the world has seen "real progress."

Obama says Iran already is beginning to see benefits from the deal. But he says it will take time for Iran to reintegrate into the world economy.

The leaders are using the meeting to review progress in implementing the Iran deal. Obama says it's a reminder that when the global community stands together, it can promote common security. He says he hopes successful diplomacy like the Iran deal can be copied in the future.