Uzbekistan WMD Stats


  • Biological: A description of the nation's situation with regards to the possession and manufacture of biological weapons of mass destruction
  • Chemical: A description of the nation's situation with regards to the possession and manufacture of chemical weapons of mass destruction
  • Nuclear: A description of the nation's situation with regards to the possession and manufacture of nuclear weapons
Biological Uzbekistan has inherited several former BW facilities from Soviet times. In Tashkent, the Institute of Virology now focuses its research on human viral diseases, while the Tashkent Center for Prophylaxis and Quarantine of Most Hazardous Diseases specializes in research on bacterial diseases. The later institute once was part of the Soviet anti-plaque system. Both institutes house extensive collections of microorganisms, including dangerous pathogens. For example, the Institute of Virology has a collection of various hemorrhagic fever viruses, such as the Crimean-Congo hemorrhagic fever virus. The Tashkent Center for Prophylaxis and Quarantine of Most Hazardous Diseases has collections of various types of bacteria, including those that cause plague, brucellosis, anthrax, and tularemia. The largest Soviet BW field-testing facility was located on Vozrozhdeniye Island, now a peninsula, in the Aral Sea. Most of the BW infrastructure is located on the two-thirds of the peninsula that lies within Uzbekistani territory. During the Soviet era, Vozrozhdeniye Island was used to test weapons armed with pathogens that cause anthrax, plague, tularemia and smallpox. Under the CTR program, Uzbekistan and the U.S. agreed on a two-stage project to clean up the island and dismantle its BW facility. The U.S. has allocated $6 million for the first stage, which is to decontaminate 11 pits containing a slurry of formulated Bacillus anthracis that were construed by the Red Army in 1988. This first stage was conducted and completed in May 2002. The second stage of the project will consist of dismantling the BW facility. The budget and timing of the second stage have not yet been settled on. Uzbekistan is a party to the Biological Weapons Convention (BWC). 2002
Chemical Uzbekistan inherited on Soviet-era CW facility, the Chemical Research Institute, located near the city of Nukus in western Uzbekistan. It had a one-cubic-meter reactor vessel with a one-ton production capacity per day. The facility was equipped with high-containment laboratories, and aerosol test chamber, and a wind tunnel used to model the dispersion of chemical agents. The facility also had an open-air test site. Operated by the Red Army, the test site was used to field-test various chemical agents. The binary agent Novichok might also have been tested on the site. Under a May 1999 implementing agreement signed by Uzbekistan and the United States, the CTR program provided $8.5 million for the dismantlement of the Chemical Research Institute. Dismantlement was complete in June 2002. Uzbekistan is a party to the Chemical Weapons Convention (CWC), but not the Australia Group. 2002
Nuclear Uzbekistan does not possess nuclear weapons, though tactical nuclear weapons may have been present on its territory during the Soviet era. Nuclear material remains in Uzbekistan in the form of irradiated fuel elements containing highly enriched uranium (HEU) at an operational nuclear research reactor near Tashkent. In September of 2004, nearly 11 kilograms of Russian-origin enriched uranium fuel, including three kilograms of HEU, were repatriated to Russia to be downblended into low-enriched fuel suitable for use in nuclear power reactors. A second research reactor in Tashkent was dismantled in the 1990s. Uzbekistan is a party to the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) and the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty (CTBT). Uzbekistani President Islam Karimov formally proposed the creation of a Central Asian Nuclear-Weapon-Free Zone at the 48th session of the UN General Assembly in 1993. 2004


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