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IAEA Completes Nuclear Security Advisory Mission in Turkey

Ankara, Turkey

An International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) team of experts completed a nuclear security advisory mission in Turkey today, which was carried out at the request of its Government.

The scope of the two-week International Physical Protection Advisory Service (IPPAS) mission included a review of the legislative and regulatory framework for the security of nuclear and other radioactive material, associated facilities and activities, including transport, and a review of cyber security arrangements, regulatory practices (licensing, inspections and enforcement) and coordination between stakeholders involved in nuclear security. Nuclear material accounting and control measures, which protect nuclear and associated facilities and material from criminals, were also reviewed, as part of a pilot feature envisaged to be added soon in the scope of all IPPAS missions.

This is the second IPPAS mission in Turkey, following the first in 2003. In July 2015, Turkey ratified the 2005 Amendment to the Convention on the Physical Protection of Nuclear Material (CPPNM), and its incorporation into the country’s nuclear security regime was also included in the scope of the mission.

The team observed that Turkey has established a nuclear security regime with essential elements of the IAEA’s guidance on the fundamentals of nuclear security. The team offered recommendations and suggestions to support Turkey in further enhancing and sustaining nuclear security. Good practices were identified that can serve as examples to other IAEA Member States to help strengthen their nuclear security activities.

The team was led by Ivan Gorinov, Division Head of Physical Protection and Nuclear Material at the Bulgarian Nuclear Regulatory Agency, and included six other experts from France, Pakistan, Romania, the United States of America, and the IAEA. The team met with officials from Turkey’s Nuclear Regulatory Authority (NDK), as well as with representatives of other relevant ministries and governmental organizations, including the Ministry of Energy and Natural Resources, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Ministry of National Defence, the Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure, law enforcement agencies, the coastguard, customs officials, the Presidency Digital Transformation Office, the Energy Market Regulatory Authority, the Informatics and Information Security Research Centre (TÜBİTAK), and the Disaster and Emergency Management Presidency. As part of the review, the team visited four facilities where radioactive materials are in use, including the two campuses of the TENMAK Nuclear Energy Research Institute, the Istanbul Technical University, and the Eczacıbaşı Monrol radiopharmaceutical facility.

“Turkey’s request for an IPPAS mission demonstrates its commitment and continuous efforts to enhance nuclear security,” said Elena Buglova, Director of the IAEA Division of Nuclear Security. “Future work to follow up on the international expert team’s findings will provide for a sustainable nuclear security regime in the country. At the same time, maintaining the highest levels of nuclear security will also render the global community more protected against threats.”

“Turkey is about to implement its nuclear energy programme with the Akkuyu Nuclear Power Plant and therefore it attaches great importance to the mission in this critical period. The Government of Turkey looks forward to implementing the findings of this important mission to strengthen the national nuclear security regime and ensure security upgrades in facilities, transportation and computer security,” said Zafer Demircan, President of the NDK. “The recommendations and suggestions of the IPPAS mission will contribute to improving the nuclear security regime of Turkey. In addition, Turkey appreciates the efforts made by the IAEA to meet its request for an IPPAS mission held in Ankara despite COVID-19 pandemic.”


The mission was the 94th IPPAS mission conducted by the IAEA since the programme began in 1995.

IPPAS missions are intended to assist States in strengthening their national nuclear security regime. The missions provide peer advice on implementing international instruments, along with IAEA guidance on the protection of nuclear and other radioactive material and associated facilities.

During a mission, a team of international experts observes a nation's system of physical protection, compares it with international good practices and makes recommendations for improvement. IPPAS missions are conducted both on a nationwide and facility-specific basis.

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