Cablegate: Wmd Portal Detection in Uzbekistan
DE RUEHNT #2063/01 3371105
ZNY SSSSS ZZH
O 031105Z DEC 07
FM AMEMBASSY TASHKENT
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 8853
INFO RUEHAH/AMEMBASSY ASHGABAT 3496
RUEHTA/AMEMBASSY ASTANA 9709
RUEHEK/AMEMBASSY BISHKEK 4112
RUEHDBU/AMEMBASSY DUSHANBE 3975
RUEHBUL/AMEMBASSY KABUL 2005
RUEHMO/AMEMBASSY MOSCOW 7222
RUEHVEN/USMISSION USVIENNA 0421
RUCNDT/USMISSION USUN NEW YORK 0013
RUEHUNV/USMISSION UNVIE VIENNA 0061
RUEKJCS/SECDEF WASHINGTON DC
RHEHNSC/NSC WASHINGTON DC
S E C R E T SECTION 01 OF 02 TASHKENT 002063
DEPT FOR SCA/CEN
E.O. 12958: DECL: 12/03/2017
TAGS: MNUC KNNP PARM KCRM PTER ASEC KCOR KZ KG UZ
SUBJECT: WMD PORTAL DETECTION IN UZBEKISTAN
REF: STATE 162091 Classified By: Poloff Steven Prohaska and DTRA Fred Carter for reasons 1.4 (b, d).
1.(S/NF) Post wishes to alert the Department and Washington agencies per reftel that it has received a report indicating a potential incident of illicit trafficking in nuclear and/or radiological materials. This report came to post's attention via xxxxxxxxxxxx (please protect) reporting informally, unofficially to Defense Threat Reduction Agency (DTRA) rep. Information concerning this report was relayed telephonically to PMAT at 1545 local time on December 3.
2. (S/NF) Details of the incident follow:
A) (S/NF) Current location of material: The rail car in question has been quarantined in the vicinity of xxxxxxxxxxxx on the Uzbekistan-Kazakhstan border by the Ministry of Emergency Situations.
B) (S/NF) Transport status of material: (e.g. stationary or in transit, who is responsible for it, how secure is it, what does the host government plan to do with it) The Ministry of Emergency Situations has quarantined the rail car and the Institute of Nuclear Physics was making preparations as of December 3 to open the rail car for further investigation.
C) (S/NF) Assessment of the likelihood that the appropriate authorities can/will secure the material. Not yet known.
D) (S/NF) If in transit, means of transport: (e.g., plane, ship, truck) Not applicable.
E) (S/NF) Intended destination of material: (port or border crossing and country) Iran was the point of destination.
F) (S/NF) Routing of material, if via multiple ports. Not applicable.
G) (S/NF) Supplier and/or origination point of material. A State Customs Committee official indicated that Kyrgyzstan was the point of origin. This point of origin conflicts with normal rail traffic patterns, however; xxxxxxxxxxxx is near the southern border of Kazakhstan.
H) (S/NF) Type of material: (e.g., assembled weapon, HEU, plutonium) Based on signal level, Institute of Nuclear Physics personnel estimated the material is either cesium or uranium. Physical form of the material is unknown.
I) (S/NF) Date and time of incident: Wednesday, November 28, 2007. Time is unknown.
J) (S/NF) Source of the report: (e.g., walk-in, detector alarm) Post was made aware of this alarm verbally xxxxxxxxxxxx. An Institute of Nuclear Physics official indicated on Monday, December 3 that the rail car had been quarantined.
K) (S/NF) If an alarm, technical information: (e.g., gamma, neutron, dose rate at a specified distance, max neutron count rate, type instrument used to take measurements, spectral data from an Isotope Identification Device) Type of alarm is unknown, but the alarm reportedly spiked at 60,000 micro-roentgen on an ASPECT YANTAR 1Zh(D) rail portal monitor.
L) (S/NF) What else if anything was being smuggled with the material: Unknown.
M) (S/NF) Specific place where alarm or incident occurred: xxxxxxxxxxxx, Uzbekistan. Believed to be quarantined in the vicinity of xxxxxxxxxxxx.
N) (S/NF) Additional details (if any available): Not applicable. TASHKENT
3.(SBU) Action officers at post for handling incident are Fred Carter and Steven Prohaska, reachable via xxxxxxxxxxxx and xxxxxxxxxxxx and xxxxxxxxxxxx.