Dirty Bombs In The Hands Of ISIS Takes Center Stage In Nuclear Security Summit 2016

Dirty Bombs In The Hands Of ISIS Takes Center Stage In Nuclear Security Summit 2016
Oregon The US Army/Flickr CC by 2.0
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The threat posed by the possibility of radioactive materials getting into the hands of notorious terrorist groups such as ISIS or ISIL was highlighted the first day of the Nuclear Security Summit in Washington Thursday.


Former US Senator Sam Nunn, on Thursday, spoke about the danger should radioactive materials end up in the wrong hands, especially in terrorists groups. Although some radioactive materials, including cesium 137, are used in the medical field and help save lives, these can also be used to kill people.

Nunn, who is the current CEO of the Nuclear Threat Initiative, said terrorist groups creating dirty bomb is much more feasible than them detonating nuclear weapons. Hence, the threat of dirty bombs from these terrorist groups is much higher, the NPR reported.

A dirty bomb is a type of explosive device tainted with different types of radioactive materials that upon explosion, leaves a lingering and unimaginable devastation that could last for years. Dirty bombs can leave radioactive material that could penetrate through a wood or even a thick concrete wall. Terrorist groups such as ISIS, has conducted a series of bombings in key cities in the world, including two coordinated attacks in the busy Belgian city of Brussels, which resulted to the death of more than 40 individuals.

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To illustrate the possible damage that a dirty bomb could bring to a possible blast site, he said once a dirty bomb exploded in a certain area, anyone would be denied access to the blast site for years. This means if a dirty bomb explodes in a busy metropolitan, say New York City, this city will be locked down until it’s cleared from any trace of radioactive material.

“I worry more about the dangers of nuclear materials being made into a dirty bomb or even a weapon, if it’s the right kind of material, than I do about a deliberate nuclear attack. A deliberate nuclear attack by a nation would be an act of suicide.” Nunn was quoted as saying by the NPR.

In his opinion editorial published in the official website of the Nuclear Security Summit 2016, US President Barack Obama reiterated that the central theme of this year’s Summit is to ensure that nations all over the world are committed to maintain nuclear security by reinvigorating its individual commitment.

Also read: Nuclear Security Summit 2016 To Focus On NoKor Denuclearization

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