National Statement: Italy


 (Washington, 1 April 2016) 


The Nuclear Security Summit has impressively moved forward the global dialogue on nuclear security, by adding a high level political dimension to the technical one and strengthening the nuclear security architecture, both domestically and internationally.

It has broadened the understanding and awareness of the nuclear terrorism threat, induced countries to increase physical nuclear security measures, reduce nuclear material stocks and sites, and intensify international cooperation. The Summit has forced through many decisions that might otherwise have languished for years.

Italy is firmly committed to keep the Summit’s legacy alive, included in its Final Communiqué, and to follow through the Action Plans, and the Gift Baskets that we support.

Whilst terrorists keep on developing new means aimed at threatening our societies and peaceful coexistence, it is imperative for all of us to maintain the momentum triggered by the Summit with a proactive and holistic approach.

We are convinced that, still for many years to come, there will be a need for a continued high-level dialogue on the next steps. This is crucial in order to verify the effectiveness of our efforts and adapt them to the coming challenges.

Although no single forum will be able to fully replace the NSS process, the IAEA represents a major venue and a key actor. Therefore,  we look forward to the  Second International Conference on Nuclear Security, to be held in Vienna next December. Italy, a major contributor to the IAEA regular Budget, the Nuclear Security Fund and the Technical Cooperation Program, actively supports the Agency undertakings related to the strengthening of the international nuclear security framework.

Furthermore, we believe - as suggested by some influential voices - that the Convention on the Physical Protection of Nuclear material can provide the proper mechanisms for a regular  review of our commitment and progress in nuclear security.

We look forward to the entry into force of its 2005 Amendment, that Italy ratified in 2015. More generally, Italy is keenly endorsing and participating in the legal framework related to nuclear security. The ratification of the International Convention on the Suppression of Acts of Nuclear Terrorism (ICSANT) is in progress together with a broader set of norms dealing with the fight against nuclear terrorism.

We are also convinced that widespread nuclear security culture is crucial for our future. For this reason, Italy will carry on its engagement to ensure that nuclear security culture remains a priority in the international and national agenda. To this aim and in view of this Summit, Italy has been promoting the new and more focused Nuclear Security Training and Support Centres Gift Basket.

Its objectives are the strengthening of the IAEA Network and the establishment of regional networks, ensuring the sustainability of these centres and promoting a culture of nuclear security as well as scientific advancements in this domain.

Nuclear security culture is indeed as much essential as the physical protection of nuclear material. For this reason, training and capacity building initiatives should be largely encouraged and sustained.

Moreover, Italy is a founding member of the Global Partnership against the Spread of Weapons and Materials of Mass Destruction, that we look forward to chairing in 2017. Italy also participates in the Global Initiative to Combat Nuclear Terrorism (GICNT), and is ready to host a meeting of its Nuclear Forensic Working Group next fall.

Finally, Italy has been fully committed to the nuclear materials consolidation and minimization programme. We have made significant efforts together with the United States to eliminate excess Highly Enriched Uranium and Plutonium. Today, the Italian national inventory consists of limited quantities of special nuclear material, currently stored in compliance with the highest international nuclear security standards.