Nuclear Cooperation Reform Act of 2018

March 21, 2018
March 21, 2018
Referred to House (sub)committee

This bill would amend the Atomic Energy Act of 1954, which authorized the president to negotiate and implement nuclear cooperation agreements with other countries barring a congressional joint resolution of disapproval, to require a stronger congressional review process. Mainly it would require Congress to pass a joint resolution of approval before the implementation of any such agreement. The bill would also prohibit any foreign aid to a country that the secretary of state determines to have supported the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction, inter alia.

Ros-Lehtinen and her initial cosponsors submitted this bill amid reports that the Trump administration was pursuing a sale of nuclear reactors to Saudi Arabia, despite Saudi refusals to accept certain nonproliferation conditions. In her press release announcing the bill, Ros-Lehtinen framed the bill in that context: “Nuclear cooperation agreements—especially in an unstable region like the Middle East—are very serious issues for U.S. national security and should always contain restrictions on the enrichment and reprocessing necessary for a nuclear weapon.” 

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