Tuesday, December 30, 2008

U.S. Ambassador Michele J. Sison Signs Agreement to Prevent Trafficking of Radioactive Material

December 30, 2008

Ambassador Michele J. Sison and General Assaad Ghanem, the General Director of Lebanese Customs, signed an agreement between the U. S. Government and Lebanese Customs to install specialized equipment at the Port of Beirut to detect illicit shipments of nuclear and other radioactive materials.

This agreement, part of the U.S. Department of Energy's Megaports Initiative, provides training on the equipment and detection of materials for Lebanese Customs staff members and other law enforcement officials.  The Megaports Initiative is currently operational in a number of countries around the world, including the Netherlands, Greece, Sri Lanka, Spain, Singapore, Bahamas, the Philippines, Belgium, Honduras, Pakistan, and the United Kingdom.

The technology and training will enable officials to stop illegal shipments of radioactive materials, guarding against nuclear proliferation. 

Ambassador Sison noted that "This agreement improves the security level for Lebanon's borders and particularly at the Port of Beirut."

This new partnership is another example of the U.S. Government's support for the Lebanese government's efforts to improve the security of Lebanon and the safety of the Lebanese people. 

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