Ottawa, November 1, 2013 – The Honourable Peter MacKay, P.C., Q.C., M.P. for Central Nova, Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada, today announced that the Nuclear Terrorism Act has come into force. This legislation enhances the domestic legal framework to better respond to the threat of nuclear terrorism and fulfills key international commitments Canada has made in the area of nuclear security.
“Nuclear terrorism is a threat of serious global concern,” said Minister MacKay. “That is why our Government has taken action to enhance our ability to fight nuclear terrorism by punishing those who aspire to commit such acts. Safety and security are paramount.”
The Nuclear Terrorism Act creates four new Criminal Code offences related to nuclear terrorism:
- Making a device, or possessing, using, transferring, exporting, importing, altering or disposing of nuclear or radioactive material or a device, or committing an act against a nuclear facility or its operations, with the intent to cause death, serious bodily harm or substantial damage to property or the environment;
- Using or altering nuclear or radioactive material or a device, or committing an act against a nuclear facility or its operation, with the intent to compel a person, a government or a domestic or international organization to do, or refrain from doing, any act;
- Committing an indictable offence for the purpose of obtaining nuclear or radioactive material or a device, or to obtain access to a nuclear facility;
- Threatening to commit any of these offences.
The international community, including Canada, has strengthened its cooperation to help prevent the acquisition of nuclear material, radioactive material and devices by individuals or groups with malicious intent.
These amendments will permit Canada to ratify the Amendment to the Convention on the Physical Protection of Nuclear Material and the International Convention for the Suppression of Acts of Nuclear Terrorism.
An online version of the legislation is available at http://www.parl.gc.ca/Default.aspx?Language=E.
Backgrounder: Nuclear Terrorism Legislation
- Paloma Aguilar
Office of the Minister of Justice
- Media Relations
Department of Justice
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