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International Cooperation

G8 Leaders

Reuters RTXLD7Z by Sergey Karpukhin

G8 leaders pose against a Canadian Rocky Mountain background at Kananaskis, Alberta, 26 June 2002.


Dinah Jansen

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Nine months after the 11 September 2001 attacks in New York City and Washington, G8 members met at the 2002 Kananaskis Summit in Alberta, Canada, and declared their intention to launch the Global Partnership (GP) to combat the spread of weapons of mass destruction (WMDs) and to prevent them from falling into terrorist hands. Group members pledged $20 billion over ten years in an effort to destroy Russian chemical weapons, dismantle decommissioned nuclear submarines, find work for underemployed weapons scientists, and secure nuclear, radiological, and biological weapons all of which posed, and continue to pose significant threats, should terrorist groups apprehend them. Russia is the primary locus of GP concern because the weapons stockpiles it inherited from the Soviet Union, the rise in organized crime and corruption in the region since 1991, and the poor state of weapons and weapons materials security in Russia have made it a potential and accessible source of WMDs for terrorist groups. This article surveys the role Canada plays in the Global Partnership to secure these weapons, the progress it has made in Russia, and what roadblocks it and other GP members have encountered since 2002.  Advancements have been made to be sure, but many midway milestones have yet to be reached, and numerous obstacles such as the lack of transparency, coordination, and prioritization threaten the GP’s chances for a successful outcome.


This survey begins with the collapse of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (USSR), the period when the global security landscape changed significantly but the weapons produced during the Cold War arms race remained.1 The new Russian Federation inherited from the Soviet Union approximately 30,000 nuclear weapons, 40,000 tons of chemical weapons, large but largely uncounted stores of biological weapons and fissile materials, and thousands of scientists with enough valuable expertise to build more WMDs. During the first years of Russia’s turbulent transition toward both democracy and a market economy, governments in Canada, Europe, and the United States were concerned that Russia might expand its export of WMDs to earn badly needed foreign revenues and to bolster its foundering economy.2 After 1991, Russian military industries experienced substantial overcapacity as military forces were restructured and procurement budgets were cut.  Russia, like the United States, could not sustain its defence industries solely through purchases for its own forces in peacetime.3  Thus, if weapons, weapons-related materials, and scientific expertise were among the few commodities in the former Soviet Union for which there was “…an international demand backed by hard currency,” the need for weapons markets, combined with the escalation of organized crime and corruption in Russia, only raised more fears that these weapons could find willing buyers among belligerent states and terrorist organizations.4

To resolve these problems, a US-led coalition launched a policy of ‘proliferation containment’ in 1991 to limit the mobility of weapons, materials, technology, and skill by means of physical protection, accounting, and export controls.5 This approach was built upon the long history of weapons security and confidence-building measures between the USSR and the US – beginning with the 1963 Hotline Agreement that attempted to reduce interstate miscommunication, which could trigger an accidental nuclear war.6 Other important Cold War era agreements include the Strategic Arms Limitation Treaties (SALT I 1972, SALT II 1979), the 1972 Anti-Ballistic Missile (ABM) Treaty, and the 1987 Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty (INF).

After the Soviet Union’s collapse, Russia and the US signed the Strategic Arms Reduction Treaties (START I 1991, START II, 1993), and met in Helsinki in 1997 to negotiate terms for START III and to clarify several problems with the ABM treaty, including Article V, which prevented testing, development, and deployment of more effective and less expensive missile defence systems.7  The START treaties were enacted to introduce systems of transparency and verification in the reduction of long-range ballistic missiles, the ban on deployment of multiple warhead land-based missiles (MIRVs), and the destruction of nuclear warheads.8

While these bilateral agreements were guided responses to the need to avoid weapons proliferation, it was understood that Russian nuclear weapons were less vulnerable to theft and diversion than weapon-usable nuclear materials in other forms because the weapons themselves were heavily guarded and accounted for in military installations.9 By 2001, under-protected Russian fissile material then became the greatest proliferation threat because these materials were kept in civilian facilities under the care of low-paid nuclear scientists who could steal the products or “…share weapon information for financial gain.”10 This threat was further exacerbated by the knowledge that the global smuggling of radioactive materials had doubled since 1996, and that there were at least 100 terrorist organizations that could acquire, or had already acquired the necessary fissile materials to develop nuclear weapons.11

Unfortunately, the threat became a reality after the September 11th terrorist attacks in New York City.  Significantly, Russian President Vladimir Putin was the first world leader to send US President George W. Bush his “sincere condolences,” and to intimate that “the entire international community must rally against terrorism.”12 Supporting the US in its effort to combat global terror, however, was more than a display of Russia’s sympathy and solidarity. Combined with existing confidence-building weapons security agreements, Russian cooperation with the US in the war on terror was a new means by which Russia could become a useful and influential partner for the West, a circumstance that had the potential to open new doors, such as full G8 membership, and possible admission to the World Trade Organization (WTO).13 Active support, Putin hoped, could also convince the US to revise its opposing position on Russia’s second war in Chechnya, as rebels there were connected with the Taliban, a group linked directly to the 9/11 attacks. Because of the security threats posed by Taliban-supported Chechen rebels, and the poor state of weapons materials security in Russia, the September tragedy presented an opportunity to use US resources to do away with the Taliban and the dual threats they posed in Chechnya and for weapons safety.14

The Plot Thickens

Chechen rebels

Reuters RTXKL18

Chechen rebels in the field near Semovodsk, approximately 70 km west of the Chechen capital Grozny, 16 October 1999.

However, Russia and the US were not the only nations concerned with fighting terrorism and securing weapons and weapons materials. Signs of new extremist movement confrontations against globalization and modernization were emerging “…from the Sahara to the Korean peninsula and from Hindu Kush to Indonesia,” and their likely weapons of choice were viewed to be “…terrorist acts – including those that involve WMD.”15 Therefore, at the Canadian 2002 Kananaskis Summit, G8 leaders condemned the September 11th terrorist attacks and implemented UN Security Council Resolution 1373 to combat terrorism through increased international cooperation and the multilateral prevention of financing, recruitment, and the provision of weapons for terrorist organizations.16 More specifically, the G8 members committed to a program of preventing terrorists from “…acquiring or developing nuclear, chemical, radiological, and biological weapons, missiles, and related materials, equipment and technology.” This project, called the G8 Global Partnership against the Spread of Weapons and Materials of Mass Destruction (GP), launched “…specific cooperation projects, initially in Russia, to address non-proliferation, disarmament, counter-terrorism, and nuclear safety issues.” The chief security areas to be addressed were the destruction and dismantlement of chemical weapons and decommissioned nuclear submarines, as well as the “disposition of fissile materials and the employment of former weapons scientists.” G8 members pledged $20 billion to destroy old weapons and boost Russian weapons security over a 10-year period.17

Canada to the Forefront

As Kananaskis Summit host and G8 member, Canada committed $1 billion to the GP project in Russia.  If Canada had hitherto “…exercised strong leadership in promoting the human security agenda,” joining the Global Partnership was another opportunity for Canada, as a middle power, to further promote its national security interests and foreign policy leadership in the disarmament arena.18 During the Cold War era, Canada established a ‘strategic tradition,’ due to its crucial position within the West’s deterrence system as it hosted a wide variety of nuclear delivery systems while providing storage, dispersal, communications, and early warning facilities to support US and Western European security systems against the Soviet nuclear threat.19 By 1968, however, Canada became one of the earliest adherents to the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT).  Although Canada had direct access to and involvement in nuclear weapons research, the Trudeau government opted early on not to develop its own explosive device, choosing instead, the “peaceful uses of the atom,” because arms race logic dictated that “…as more states acquire nuclear weapons, the likelihood of their use increases.”20

Although Canada’s foreign policy moved toward moderation, it undertook a leading role in “vigorous nonproliferation diplomacy” by persuading other states to take part in the SALT, ABM, and START treaties.21 As for weapons destruction, Canada also led the way toward banning anti-personnel landmines at the Ottawa Conference and Mine Action Forum in December 1997.  The 1999 Land Mines Treaty that followed the ‘Ottawa Process’ called on all nations to destroy their mine stockpiles, to clear mined areas, to stop the production and delivery of landmines, and to cooperate with other nations to implement the program.22 Because Canada was able to facilitate a coalition of state and non-governmental organizations (NGOs) to work toward bringing the concept of landmine prohibition to reality in about one year’s time, Canada demonstrated clear leadership ability by coordinating the first disarmament instrument to ban a widely-used weapon of war.23 It was due to this confidence, Canada’s competent history in nuclear nonproliferation and safe regulation of civilian nuclear reactors, combined with rising international concerns about Russian domestic developments including democratization, economy, and the security of Russia’s military arsenal, which Canada committed to the GP, and took on a new role in international weapons security and destruction.24

The tasks that Canada has undertaken within the GP project in Russia include providing assistance in maintaining and upgrading Russian nuclear and radiological security, cooperating in the dismantlement of Russia’s decommissioned nuclear submarines, destroying chemical weapons, ensuring the non-proliferation of biological weapons, and supporting redirection of thousands of former Soviet weapons scientists.25 Overall, the Canadian government viewed its decision to participate in the GP as beneficial, not only for globally recognized presence in the disarmament effort, but also because it could work with other member states to provide Russia with much-needed resources to dispose of outdated weapons, and to meet international obligations to reduce international terrorist group access to WMDs that ultimately threaten Canadian security.26 However, it is important to recognize a key point at this juncture. For Canada to actively participate in the GP initiative, it depended (and continues to depend) upon the cooperation of other states. As a middle power, Canada’s pool of expertise in the making of both foreign and nuclear policy is relatively small, and, with an economy approximately one-tenth the size of the US, it has far less available financial wherewithal than other GP members. Therefore, Canada’s financial commitment to the GP is not without limits, in that its meaningful participation is hedged in the confines of predictably deliverable resources from within, and from GP partner states.27

Canadian Minister of Foreign Affairs Maxime Bernier with senior Afghan officials

DND photo AR2008-z129-09 by Simone Duchesne

Canadian Minister of Foreign Affairs Maxime Bernier with senior Afghan officials in Kandahar, Afghanistan, 13 April 2008.

Nevertheless, on 4 February 2008, then Canadian Minster of Foreign Affairs Maxime Bernier produced the 2007 Global Partnership Program Report to Parliament to illustrate what progress Canada has made since 2002 in reducing the threats associated with Russian WMDs, and to otherwise justify ongoing federal spending for GP projects.  First, because of the environmental and security threats posed by the more than two million portable chemical munitions at the storage facility in Shchuch’ye, Kurgan oblast, the GP sought to destroy 5457 metric tonnes of nerve agent, or 20 percent of Russia’s chemical weapons destruction quota.28 In this effort, Canada has contributed $33 million to construct 18 kilometres of railway from the weapons storage facility to nearby destruction buildings. Another $10 million has been allocated for other Shchuch’ye projects, including the construction of a local accident warning system and the connection of high-speed fibre-optic communication links between facilities. Furthermore, Canada has provided $55 million to double the destructive capacity of the facility’s equipment that was to be installed in early 2008 when the facility’s operations were set to begin.29

Although Canada works largely in cooperation with Russia, the US, and the UK in Shchuch’ye, numerous factors have arisen that have made it difficult for the goal of chemical weapons destruction to be achieved on schedule. A February 2006 SGP Issue Brief states that “…erratic funding from the United States, bureaucratic delays in processing government-to-government agreements, conflicts over sub-contracting and over [Russian] visas for foreigners working onsite” have delayed the actual commencement of the destruction program by three to four years.30 This means that the program, begun in 2008, may not reach the GP goals by the 2012 expiry date. More resources and speedier efforts may be required from all participants, including Canada, to meet the target date. 

A further problem is found in that Russia shifted its focus to destroying chemical stockpiles at Kambarka and Maradykovsky to meet its 10-year-old obligation to the April 2007 Chemical Weapons Convention deadline, putting less priority and financing on the Shchuch’ye project.  Russia’s strategic shift, bureaucratic obstacles, lack of consistent US funding, and inability to deliver ‘extensive information’ about project sites have therefore created what former Canadian Ambassador Christopher Westdal calls a “procedural impasse.”31 This situation has frustrated meaningful progress for Canadian efforts and expenditures, and it also threatens failure in the achievement of GP targets if member states become more wary of continued investment in an unviable program without a predictable endpoint.

Maritime Initiatives

Additionally, as is the case with chemical weapons, Russia’s decommissioned nuclear submarines pose significant proliferation, terroristic, and environmental risks. In 2002, the GP pledged $1.3 billion of priority assistance to Russia in the transport, defuelling, dismantlement, safe management, and storage of nearly 200 nuclear vessels.32 Focusing upon the Northern Fleet, Canada pledged $120 million to dismantle 12 vessels at the Zvezdochka Shipyard in Severodvinsk, Archangelsk oblast. By March 2008, Canada had successfully dismantled 11 submarines, defueled 24 reactors, and transported spent radioactive fuel from these vessels to a processing facility in the Ural region. Canada also cooperated with the US and completed dismantlement of one Typhoon class strategic ballistic missile submarine.33

Decommissioned Russian nuclear submarines

Associated Press (AP) 96010105847

Decommissioned Russian nuclear submarines at their Arctic base of Severomorsk awaiting their turn to be dismantled.

To complement the project, Canada, which shares common Arctic waters and interests with Russia, has also donated $32 million to the Northern Dimension Environmental Partnership (NDEP) that supports environmental projects on nuclear-related security and nuclear waste management in Northwestern Russia and the Barents Sea region, currently the largest repository of nuclear waste in the world.34 The NDEP is currently working on a Strategic Master Plan (SMP) and a Strategic Environmental Assessment (SEA) that will set out a comprehensive and harmonized work program for the overall decommissioning of nuclear submarines, which will include awareness of the environmental consequences of SMP implementation.35

The creation of the SMP indicates that Canada and the GP’s achievements in Russia are cooperative, but its efforts have been thwarted by a number of international impediments that have made a successful outcome for submarine dismantlement more difficult to reach.  Reports from the Center for Nonproliferation Studies show that by 2004, more detailed high- and low-level coordination was needed to prevent gaps, duplications, and accidents such as the August 2003 sinking of a K-159 nuclear submarine caused by insufficient oversight between working groups.36 Unfortunately, by 2007, questions with respect to prioritization, risk assessment, and planning methods, as well as information sharing, which would help donors to set their own priorities, and coordination, still needed to be clarified and answered.37 The CNS, for example, criticizes Russia’s prioritization of socioeconomics (i.e., job creation in the region) over security improvements for nuclear submarines, a condition that contradicts the GP’s security concerns.38

Further criticism lies in a distinct lack of transparency on Russia’s part. Here, information sharing is important to both planning and implementation, as it builds confidence among Russia’s partners and the Russian public.  This sharing would further mean that security concerns are being fully and properly addressed, and that GP activities are designed and performed safely, securely, and cost-effectively. Also, more transparency will ensure that certain tasks, such as those undertaken by Canada, will not be forgotten or de-emphasized.  Appropriate inter-agency and inter-state management and information-sharing will make certain that Canadian milestones and continuing projects are properly factored into prioritizing ongoing GP bio-safety and terrorist risk assessment, security measures, including physical protection upgrades – and the elimination of gaps or costly duplication.39

Nuclear and Radiological Protection

Canada’s third area of participation in the GP project focuses upon nuclear and radiological protection because existing security weaknesses in Russia could allow terrorists to steal fissile material, weapons, or materials from radioisotope thermoelectric generators (RTGs).40 Unclassified data shows that 600 RTGs and 1250 tonnes of poorly guarded weapons-grade nuclear materials, including 600 tonnes of highly enriched uranium (HEU) and separated plutonium, were accounted for in Russia at the end of 2003.41  Prior to Kananaskis, these materials were subject to numerous attempts to seize, smuggle, or trade them on the black market.42 The GP therefore took on the task of upgrading security systems and assisting in the US/Russian led effort to convert 34 tonnes of plutonium that was no longer required for defence purposes into valuable energy for several new Russian fossil fuel power plants currently under construction.43

For these projects, Canada has contributed $65 million to help secure weapons-grade materials through physical protection and security upgrades at Russian nuclear facilities including sensors, barriers, and intervention response forces.44 Canada also created the RTG Master Plan, and pledged $2 million to “…remove, secure, replace, and decommission Russian RTGs” under the plan’s guidelines. Furthermore, Canada pledged $6 million to upgrade Russia’s border security alongside Ukraine and $9 million toward the project to shut down Russia’s last reactor producing weapons-grade plutonium by 2011 – and made an $8 million contribution to the IAEA Nuclear Security Fund (NSF), which coordinates additional nuclear security activities to “…prevent, detect, and respond to nuclear terrorism.”45

Additional Problem Areas

However, like setbacks associated with implementing the destruction of chemical weapons and nuclear submarines, several problems have surfaced in the realization of GP goals for nuclear and radiological security.  In July 2006, the Strengthening the Global Partnership Project cited transparency issues as the primary impediment to weapons materials security.  For example, incomplete accounting of the amount and precise locations of nuclear and radiological materials in Russia have impeded GP coordination efforts, leaving 51 percent of the known facilities containing nuclear materials without any outside security upgrades.46 To date, the vulnerability of these sites to theft by terrorists or terrorist suppliers has not been resolved. In January 2008, Russia claimed that their customs officials had foiled at least 120 separate attempts to smuggle highly radioactive material out of the country in 2007, sparking larger concern with respect to “how many illegal exports were not halted” on Russian borders, let alone at weapons materials facilities.47 In one contentious case, a Russian man was apprehended in Tbilisi in January 2006 trying to sell a four-ounce sample of presumably Russian HEU for $1 million to an undercover Georgian agent.48 Although the sample was too small to determine its origin, the Russian connection to the contraband HEU has been established, due to the poor level of weapons materials security in Russia.49

The Way Ahead

Therefore, it is clear that while significant headway has been made in the priority projects of chemical weapon and nuclear submarine destruction, resources for these achievements have come at the expense of nuclear and radiological security, wherein the threat of theft is actually a reality. Moreover, what advancements Canada and other GP members have made in securing nuclear materials is overshadowed by the continued theft of the materials they have yet to secure.  More information-sharing, and higher levels of GP priority and funding must be directed toward under-protected weapons materials facilities in Russia to ensure that terrorist groups cannot access them, and to meet the third principle of the GP mandate, to “…develop and maintain appropriate effective physical protection measures” of weapons and weapons materials.50

The fourth arm of the GP project in which Canada plays a role is in the re-direction of 35,000 to 50,000 underemployed weapons scientists to sustainable, non-military activities, and to ensure they do not sell their expertise or access to weapons-related materials to groups or states of proliferation concern.51 Because arms-control treaties have reduced the number of nuclear warheads to be developed, tested, maintained, and deployed, “overcapacity in the nuclear sector” has occurred – a consequence that ensures downsizing, particularly in nuclear cities where the sole industry is the nuclear facility.52 Therefore, scientists and other technical personnel who have lost or will lose their jobs require sustainable employment options.53

Russian Deputy Prime Minister Klebanov inspects chemical warhead

Reuters RTRJBMC by Sergey Karpukhin

Russian Deputy Prime Minister Klebanov inspects a chemical warhead during the inauguration of a plant outside Chelyabinsk tasked with destroying chemical weapons, 8 June 2001.

To assist them, Canada has contributed $27 million to ongoing research projects at the International Science and Technology Centre (ISTC) in Moscow, and the Science and Technology Centre (STCU) at Kiev.  The ISTC funds basic and applied research and technology development, and has integrated approximately 25,000 former Soviet weapons scientists from Russia into the international science community, to address such problems as environmental restoration and arms control verification. Canada’s GP contributions have successfully redirected 2000 scientists into technology development for civilian purposes within the ISTC.54 The STCU focuses upon the Ukraine, Azerbaijan, Moldova, Uzbekistan, and Georgia.  It supports the integration of scientists from these areas into the global scientific and business communities, and it assists in the protection and exploitation of research results attained to benefit the scientists creating them, and the economies and societies of the parties governing the Center.  Under the GP, Canada has provided about $562,000 to fund numerous STCU research projects.55

However, the sustainability of the GP project of redirecting scientists into these organizations is a grave concern. Funding for these centres by GP donor states has been reduced by 40 percent, or $39 million since 2002, a contraction that means current financial support cannot meet new research proposal demands, and that new grants can only redirect scientists for short-term, or two-to-three-year periods. Simply put, as more scientists lose their jobs from downsizing, it will be increasingly difficult to redirect them if there are not enough positions created to accommodate them. Thus, more funding in this sector is required. As well, until the plan for creating sustainable employment opportunities is fully implemented, more effort and funding are also needed to create a broader security culture at weapons facilities among scientists and other personnel with access to sensitive materials.56 While no program can guarantee that scientists will refrain from selling scientific knowledge to proliferants, the attempt to instill a strong security culture must be pursued; otherwise the program of redirecting scientists to peaceful occupations will be rendered dangerously incomplete if they are not given sufficient inducements to discourage them from selling out to the “highest bidder.”57

The last area of the GP project Canada participates in is the non-proliferation of biological weapons, including Russia’s stockpile of weaponized diseases.58 Inadequate control over biological agents, manufacturing equipment, and scientists after 1991 meant these resources posed significant security risks in light of not only the environmental threats they posed, but also the attention paid by terrorist organizations to the utility of dangerous pathogens and toxins for their programs.59 Canada has invested approximately $610,000 to develop biosecurity and biosafety standards, guidelines, associations, and training for Russia and Central Asia, as well as the implementation of physical security procedures and equipment for laboratory facilities. There is also a developing project to build a new biological containment laboratory that will consolidate dangerous pathogen collections as the Russian government reduces the number of science research facilities from 2600 to 1600 by 2010 – a process that may boost efficiency and accountability, but noticeably contradicts efforts to employ weapons scientists.60

The Two-Way Street

Still, cooperative initiatives to prevent terrorists from acquiring biological materials require greater assistance from Russia, a necessity the Global Partnership has not yet received in full. So far, Russia has declined to discuss the issue of biological security within the context of the Global Partnership, a point of contention with donor countries like Canada that are working on physical security upgrades for biological sites.  In order to fulfill the GP plan of securing biological weapons, donor states need information with respect to Russia’s Ministry of Defence biological facilities, including locations, accurate inventory data, and current security conditions.61

Russian silence on the issue arises from several possible factors.  First, since the Soviet Union violated provisions under the 1972 Biological Weapons Convention (BWC) by continuing to develop offensive biological military programs illegally, it is possible that Russia had either sustained biological weapons projects, or had failed to destroy laboratories and large-scale testing equipment as promised when Boris Yeltsin officially eliminated the program in 1992.  However, given the chaotic decision-making and lack of inter-agency coordination in Russia during the 1990s, as well as multiple but divergent policy priorities since 2000, it is also possible that Moscow can neither provide accurate data, nor face negative political implications should foreign access to its biological facilities reveal uncomfortable truths.62 Other plausible reasons for Russia’s lack of transparency include economic motives, such as saving jobs in the defence industry, profits and balance of payments for state and industry, and saving the costs of destruction.63 There are also possible psychological motives, such as the desire to gain leverage or influence in a particular region or country, and the need to retain strong defences in a particular area as other areas are dismantled.64 Clearly, political solutions to these variables may be the only way for GP members to get the access and information they require to fulfill their plan to secure biological weapons, an effort that, to date, has “barely scratched the surface.”65

Tupolev TU-22 Backfire

Associated Press (AP) 02111202116 by Viktor Pobedinsky

The destruction of a Tupolev TU-22 Backfire strategic supersonic bomber, 12 November 2002.


Overall, since the inception of the Global Partnership at Kananaskis in 2002, considerable developments have been made in numerous areas while meaningful work needs to be implemented in other sectors to ensure terrorists do not intercept WMDs, the ultimate goal of the GP. To ensure a successful outcome, and to strongly justify and encourage further spending by donor states such as Canada, several problems must be addressed and surmounted.  Issues of transparency and access in Russia must be resolved so that appropriate coordination and implementation of GP plans can be exercised and prioritized by donor states and personnel, if goals are to be met by 2012.  Heavier priority, funding, and on-site implementation must be given to areas such as nuclear and radiological weapons materials facilities, where the security of weapons is known to be weak, and, in some cases, has been compromised. Russia must share information on its biological weapons facilities, because their vulnerability is known only approximately, and few ‘on the ground’ measures have hitherto been taken to eliminate the threat. Further inter-state/inter-agency coordination and oversight is needed to promote efficiency by eliminating unnecessary duplication or gaps in security activities.  Donor states, including the US, must also be compelled to honour their pledges, so that these funds can be converted into sustainable projects such as job creation for scientists more quickly, rather than remaining as plans on the agenda.66 Lastly, but not insignificantly, issues of liability and taxation must be unraveled, as they also have slowed progress on project implementation and added to the “bureaucratic burden in donor countries.”67

However, even if these disparities are resolved quickly, the Global Partnership may still have to extend itself beyond the 2012 deadline and $20 billion ceiling. Whether this will be considered a failure is a matter of conjecture, as success can only be truly measured once the threat posed by unsecured WMDs in Russia ceases to exist. In the meantime, Canada remains a stalwart contributor to its GP projects, but its finances are exhaustive, despite its most recent earmarks in June 2009.68 As well, Canada has called upon all participants to turn financial pledges into concrete activities because “…one of the essential factors of successful projects is a predictable, coordinated, targeted and efficient assistance.”69 If Canada has merited special praise by completing legal frameworks in Russia and by disbursing funds in a number of implemented project areas, this progress serves as an example to other donors of what can happen when national leadership and resources are harnessed to their fullest extent.70 The Global Partnership and Canada are confident these pledges will be realized, so that investments such as Canada’s $1 billion pledge (including the $526 million spent to date)71 will buy more than simply international recognition, but will implement more meaningful and sustainable projects to achieve the goals of weapons and weapons materials security and destruction in Russia.

World Leaders at the G8 summit

Reuters RTR25I3P by Stefano Rellandini

World leaders at the recent G8 summit in L’Aquila, Italy, 9 July 2009.

CMJ Logo

Dinah Jansen is with the Institute of European, Russian and Eurasian Studies at Carleton University in Ottawa, where she specializes in Canadian-Soviet and Canadian-Russian relations.


  1. Yuri E. Federov,  “Nuclear Dilemmas in the 21st Century,” in Michael Intriligator, A. Nikitin & Majid Tehranian (eds.)., Eurasia: A New Peace Agenda (Amsterdam: Elsevier, 2005), p. 111.
  2. Gary K. Bertsch and William C. Potter (eds.), Dangerous Weapons, Desperate States: Russia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, and Ukraine  (New York: Routledge, 1999), p. 3.
  3. Jo L. Husbands,  “Conventional Weapons,” in Jeffrey Larsen (ed.), Arms Control: Cooperative Security in a Changing Environment (Boulder: Lynne Rienner, 2002), p. 166.
  4. Bertsch and Potter, p. 4.
  5. Ibid.
  6. “Memorandum of Understanding between the United States of America and the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics Regarding the Establishment of a Direct Communications Link,” 20 June 1963, United Nations Treaty Collection <http://untreaty.un.org/unts/1_60000/13/37/00025811.pdf>, accessed 22 June 2009.
  7. Henry F. Cooper, “ABM Treaty Costs: Prepared Testimony of Henry F. Cooper before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee.” 26 September 1996. Federation of American Scientists,
  8. <http://www.fas.org/spp/starwars/congress/1996_h/s960926c.htm>, accessed 22 June 2009. 
  9. Susan Willet, Costs of Disarmament-Disarming the Costs: Nuclear Arms Control and Nuclear Rearmament (Geneva: United Nations Institute for Disarmament Research, 2003), pp. 15-20.
  10. Bertsch and Potter, p. 5.
  11. Guy B. Roberts, “Cooperative Security Measures,” in Larsen, pp. 183-192.
  12. Kirsty Scott, “Leak Shows Nuclear Trafficking Doubled,” The Guardian, 14 May 2001.
  13. Vladimir Putin, “Telegram of Condolence to US President George W. Bush,”  11 September 2001, President of Russia Official Web Portal, <http://www.kremlin.ru/eng/text/news/ 2001/09/136023.shtml>, accessed 22 June 2008.
  14. Alexei G. Arbatov, “Superterrorism-Implications for a New Security Strategy,” in Intriligator, et. al., p. 95.
  15. Valentin Sobolev, “We Must Combat the Sources of Terrorism, Not its Consequences,” Yaderny Kontrol. Vol. 10, No. 3-4 (2005): pp. 19-20; Arbatov, pp. 95-96.
  16. “Protecting Against the Spread of Nuclear, Biological, and Chemical Weapons: An Action Agenda for the Global Partnership.  Vol. 4: Russian Perspectives and Priorities,” Washington: Center for Strategic and International Studies, 2003), p. 5. 
  17. “Resolution 1373,” 28 September 2001, United Nations Security Council <http://www.un.org/News/ Press/docs/2001/sc7158.doc.htm>, accessed 23 June 2009.
  18. “G8 Global Partnership Against the Spread of Weapons and Materials of Mass Destruction,” 27 June 2002, 2002 G8 Kananaskis Summit: Documents <http://www.canadainternational.gc.ca/g8/summit-sommet/2002/global_partnership-partenariat_mondial.aspx?lang=eng>, accessed 23 June 2009.
  19. Ronald M. Behringer, “Middle Power Leadership on the Human Security Agenda.” Cooperation and Conflict, Vol. 40, No. 3 (2005): p. 309.
  20. Sean M. Maloney, Learning to Love the Bomb: Canada’s Nuclear Weapons during the Cold War (Washington: Potomac, 2007), pp. xvii-xix.
  21. Steven Kendall Holloway, Canadian Foreign Policy: Defining the National Interest (Peterborough, ON: Broadview, 2006), p. 10; Brian Buckley, Canada’s Early Nuclear Policy: Fate, Chance, and Character (Kingston: McGill-Queen’s University Press, 2000), p. 128.
  22. John Hay, “Canada,” in Protecting Against the Spread of Nuclear, Biological, and Chemical Weapons: An Action Agenda for the Global Partnership.  Vol. 3: International Responses (Washington: Center for Strategic and International Studies, 2003), p. 6.
  23. ldquo;Convention on the Prohibition of the Use, Stockpiling, Production, and Transfer of Anti-Personnel Mines and on their Destruction,” 1 March 1999, International Campaign to Ban Landmines. <http://www.icbl.org/treaty/text/english>, accessed 23 June 2009.
  24. Hay, p. 6.
  25. Bogdan Burudu and Dragoş Popa, “Canada-Russia Relations: A Strategic Partnership?”  In Andrew F. Cooper and Dane Rowlands (eds.), Canada among Nations, 2005: Splitting Images (Kingston: McGill-Queen’s University Press, 2005), p. 191.
  26. “Global Partnership Program,” Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade Canada (DFAIT), < http://www.international.gc.ca/gpp-ppm/global_partnership-partenariat_mondial.aspx >, accessed 23 June 2009. 
  27. Burudu and Popa, p. 191.
  28. Hay, p. 6. 
  29. Global Partnership Program: A Tangible Canadian Contribution to Reducing the Threat of Weapons of Mass Destruction, 2006-2007 Annual Report,” DFAIT <http://geo.international.gc.ca/cip-pic/ library/GPX _ AnnualReport_07-en.pdf>, accessed 23 June 2009, pp. 12-13. 
  30. Walker and de Guzmann.
  31. David Filipov and Anna Dolgov, “Push to Guard Arms in Russia at Risk,” Boston Globe, 26 April 2004.
  32. Christina Chuen, “Submarine Dismantlement Assistance,” April 2004, Center for Nonproliferation Studies <http://www.nti.org/e_research/e3_43a.html>, accessed 25 June 2009; “Reporton the G8 Global Partnership,” 2007 G8 Heiligendamm Summit: Documents <http://www.g-8.de/Content/EN/Artikel/__g8-summit/anlagen/gp-report-final,templateId=raw,property=publicationFile.pdf/gp-report-final>, accessed 25 June 2009.
  33. Report on the G8 Global Partnership: Annex A,” 2008 G8 Hokkaido Summit Documents, <http://www. mofa.go.jp/policy/economy/summit/2008/doc/pdf/0708_12_02_en.pdf>, accessed 25 June 2009, p. 5.
  34. Global Partnership Program: A Tangible Canadian Contribution,” pp. 14-16; “The NDEP’s Nuclear Waste Challenge,” Northern Dimension Environmental Project <http://www.ndep.org/ home.asp?type=nh&pageid=20>, accessed 25 June 2009.
  35. NDEP’s Nuclear Waste Challenge.”
  36. Christina Chuen, “Coordinating Submarine Dismantlement Assistance in Russia,” September 2004, Center for Nonproliferation Studies <http://www.nti.org/c_press/analysis_subs_090104.pdf>, accessed 25 June 2009.
  37. Christina Chuen, “Russian Nuclear-Powered Submarine Dismantlement and Related Activities: A Critique,” May 2007, Center for Nonproliferation Studies <http://cns.miis.edu/stories/070524.htm>, accessed 25 June 2009.
  38. Ibid.
  39. Ibid.
  40. Weapons of Terror: Freeing the World of Nuclear, Biological, and Chemical Arms, Final Report (Stockholm: Weapons of Mass Destruction Commission, 2006), p. 83.
  41. Weapons of Terror: Freeing the World of Nuclear, Biological, and Chemical Arms, Final Report (Stockholm: Weapons of Mass Destruction Commission, 2006), p. 83.
  42. “Assessing the G8 Global Partnership: From Kananaskis to St. Petersburg,” July 2006, Center for Strategic and International Studies, < ectorg/publications/SGPAssessment2006.pdfingcd=2&hl=en&ct=clnk>, accessed 2009.
  43. “Global Partnership Program: A Tangible Canadian Contribution,” p.17. 
  44. “Reporton the G8 Global Partnership,” Heiligendamm Summit Documents, p. 2.
  45. “Report on the G8 Global Partnership: Annex A,” Hokkaido Summit Documents, p. 5.
  46. “Global Partnership Program: A Tangible Canadian Contribution,” pp. 18-19; “Nuclear Security Fund” (2007), International Atomic Energy Agency <http://www-ns.iaea.org/security/nsf.htm>, accessed 25 June 2009.
  47. “Global Partnership Scorecard (2006),” Strengthening the Global Partnership Project <http://www.sgp project.org/publications/GPScorecard2006.pdf>, accessed 25 June 2009; “G8 Global Partnership: From Kananaskis to St. Petersburg,” p. 8. 
  48. Will Stewart, “Russia Foils Atomic Smugglers,” Telegraph, 4 January 2008.
  49. Lawrence Scott Sheets and William J. Broad, “Smugglers Plot Highlights Fear over Uranium,” New York Times, 25 January 2007.
  50. “Moscow Lashes out at Georgia over Uranium Sale,” Associated Press, 27 January 2007; Jim Heintz,  “Russian City May Be Source for Uranium,” Associated Press, 27 January 2007.
  51. “G8 Global Partnership,” Kananaskis Summit Documents.
  52. Victor Alessi, “The Brain Drain Problem,” in Protecting Against the Spread of Nuclear, Biological, and Chemical Weapons: An Action Agenda for the Global Partnership, Vol. 2: The Challenges (Washington: Center for Strategic and International Studies, 2003), p. 17; “Global Partnership Program: A Tangible Canadian Contribution,” pp. 20-21.
  53. Alessi, 17; “Global Partnership Program: A Tangible Canadian Contribution,” pp. 20-21.
  54. “Global Partnership Scorecard (2006),” p. 12.
  55. Ibid.; Alessi, p. 6.
  56. “Vision, Mission, Near-Term Strategy (2008),” Science & Technology Center in Ukraine<http://www. stcu.int/weare/MissionStatement/mission/index.php>, accessed 25 June 2009; “Global Partnership Program: A Tangible Canadian Contribution,” p. 34.
  57. “Global Partnership Scorecard (2006),” p. 12. 
  58. Alessi, pp. 21-22.
  59. “Global Partnership Program: A Tangible Canadian Contribution,” p. 25.
  60. Weapons of Terror, p. 112.
  61. “Global Partnership Program: A Tangible Canadian Contribution,” pp. 25-29; “Global Partnership Scorecard (2006),” p. 11.
  62. “Global Partnership Scorecard (2006),” pp. 10-11.
  63. Protecting Against the Spread of Nuclear, Biological, and Chemical Weapons: An Action Agenda for the Global Partnership, Vol. 4: Russian Perspectives and Priorities (Washington: Center for Strategic and International Studies, 2003), pp. 126-129.
  64. Herbert Wulf, “Transparency in Armaments and Other Confidence Building Measures,” in Jozef Goldblat (ed.), Nuclear Disarmament: Obstacles to Banishing the Bomb  (London: IB Taurus, 2000), p. 94. 
  65. Ibid.
  66. Michèle A. Flournoy,  “The G8 Global Partnership: Successes and Shortcomings: Testimony before the United States House of Representatives Subcommittee on International Terrorism and Nonproliferation,” 30 June 2005, Center for Strategic and International Studies <http://www.global security.org/wmd/library/congress/ 2005_h/050630-flournoy.pdf>, accessed 26 June 2009, p. 10.
  67. Ibid., p. 2.
  68. “Global Partnership Scorecard (2006),” p. 12.
  69. Building up to the July 2009 G8 L’Aquila Summit, G8 Foreign Ministers met at Trieste, Italy on 26 June.  Canadian Foreign Minister Lawrence Cannon announced the geographic expansion of the GP beyond the borders of the former Soviet Union saying this expansion would allow Canada to address WMD proliferation “wherever the most significant threats exist.”  Canada will continue to fund existing projects and has earmarked 180 million to upgrade physical protection systems at seven Russian nuclear facilities, secure transport of nuclear materials, design a new biological containment facility in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan, and decommission five more nuclear submarines.  See “Canada Announces Contribution to Reduce Threat of Weapons of Mass Destruction and Expands Global Partnership Program,” 26 June 2009, Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade, <http: //w01.international.gc.ca/MinPub/Publication.aspx?lang= eng&publication_id=387317&docnum=178>, accessed 27 June 2009. 
  70. “Global Partnership Program: A Tangible Canadian Contribution,” p. 37.
  71. Flournoy, p. 4.
  72.   “Canada Announces Contribution.”

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