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Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)

Romania Special Weapons

Romania ratified the NPT in 1970, but a covert nuclear weapons development program was pursued under the Ceausescu regime. Little information is publicly available on the weapons program, but it is known that hot cells were used for experimental plutonium extraction from irradiated research reactor fuel.

After Ceausescu's overthrow in 1989, the weapons program was terminated. Supply of HEU for a 14 MW Triga research reactor was terminated by the US in the late 1980s because of the possibility of diversion of HEU for weapons production; the reactor was shut down from 1989-91 and it was converted to enable use of low-enriched uranium (LEU) fuel. A nuclear power program has been in the planning stages for some years in Romania, with five power reactors under construction as at 1995.

On 30 March 1998 Romania and the United States signed an agreement to promote military relations between the two countries and to work together to curb trafficking in deadly chemical, biological andnuclear weapons.

The declassified version of the Defense Intelligence Agency's 1995 "Chemical Warfare Assessment Romania" is heavily edited, but the U.S. National Ground Intelligence Agency did identify research and production facilities and chemical weapons stockpiles and storage facilities in Romania. It has been reported in multiple chemical weapons assesments that Romania had a large chemical warfare program and that it had developed a cheaper method for synthesizing sarin.

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Page last modified: 24-07-2011 04:46:30 ZULU