UNODC Supports CARICOM countries to Act against Risks of Nuclear Terrorism

The transnational nature of the threat posed by radiological and nuclear terrorism demands urgent attention. In order to mitigate and counteract this looming threat, a coordinated response from Member States and the international community must be put in place. The activities leading to acts of terrorism involving nuclear or other radioactive material will often take place across numerous countries. Therefore, effective international cooperation in criminal matters is required to investigate and prosecute these cases. UNODC offers Member States assistance to become party to and implement important international legal instruments that offer vital tools to address this threat.

On 25-27 February 2020, UNODC and the Government of Barbados co-hosted, in Bridgetown, a regional workshop for selected CARICOM countries on the universalization and effective implementation of the 2005 International Convention for the Suppression of Acts of Nuclear Terrorism (ICSANT), the Convention on the Physical Protection of Nuclear Material (CPPNM) and its 2005 Amendment (ACPPNM). 

The regional workshop was opened by Senator Dr. Honourable Jerome Walcott, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade of Barbados, H.E. Ms Marie Legault, High Commissioner of Canada in Barbados, Mr Didier Trebucq, UN Resident Coordinator, Mr Raja Adnan, Director of the Division of Nuclear Security of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) and Mr. O’Neil Hamilton, 1540 Regional Implementation Coordinator of CARICOM. 

The event brought together senior officials from Barbados, the Bahamas, Belize, Dominica, Grenada, Guyana, St. Kitts and Nevis, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Suriname and Trinidad and Tobago.

The workshop raised awareness amongst CARICOM Member States on the importance and benefits of becoming party to, and fully implementing these legal instruments, as adherence to these instruments remains low in the region. 

The workshop involved discussions focused on the main features of the three conventions, the differences and synergies between them, as well as an interactive exercise on the application of the conventions. Experts from Antigua and Barbuda, Canada, Jamaica and St. Kitts and Nevis shared with participants their national experiences on becoming party to and implementing the instruments. Representatives from the CARICOM Secretariat, the IAEA, the 1540 Committee Group of Experts and the United Nations Office for Disarmament Affairs and UNODC also provided their expertise. 

The workshop was delivered under UNODC's three-year project, funded by the Government of Canada, to promote the universalization and effective implementation of ICSANT, the CPPNM and its 2005 Amendment.