Pablo Martinez Monsivais/AP

Bush Cancels Nuclear Deal with Russia

September 08, 2008 04:27 PM
by Cara McDonough
President George W. Bush cancelled the once-celebrated civilian nuclear deal Monday as a sign of disapproval with Moscow following its war with Georgia.
Bush had sent the agreement to Congress in May and, although the deal was unlikely to win approval this year, he withdrew it in order to “make a loud statement,” MSNBC reports. His decision represents the first penalty the United States has imposed on Russia following its war with Georgia over the breakaway regions of Abkhazia and South Ossetia, which Moscow views as independent states.

The nuclear deal would have allowed Moscow to establish a business as the center for the import and storage and used nuclear fuel from American reactors around the world. The United States would have received access to new Russian nuclear technology, and helped the country develop nuclear energy use worldwide in order to combat global warming, MSNBC reports. The deal would also involve keeping nuclear material from terrorists.

Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice announced the move. “We make this decision with regret,” she said, in a statement read by Department of States spokesman Sean McCormack. “Unfortunately, given the current environment, the time is not right for this agreement.”

McCormack said that the administration has had “some deep concerns” about Russia’s behavior for some time.

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