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Pakistan begins US container scan initiative

Pakistan begins US container scan initiative

Karachi: Port Qasim in Pakistan and Puerto Cortes in Honduras have begun running a new programme to scan containers destined for US ports for any signs of nuclear devices or radiological material. The American 'Secure Freight Initiative' is designed to increase security and reduce terror threats for container shipping.

According to Associated Press, the programme, for which testing began last month in Pakistan, is also slated for expansion to the port of Singapore, the Gamman Terminal at the Korean port of Busan, Southhampton port in England and the port of Salalah in Oman.

The $60m initiative allows U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers stationed at the overseas ports to instantly receive information from the scans at their stations, allowing them to eliminate possible terror threats while the cargo is still on foreign soil.

In a statement, US Homeland Security Deputy Secretary Michael Jackson (pictured) said, "Secure Freight creates a global nuclear detection network with shippers, carriers and foreign allies, to head off the worst possible form of attack, a nuclear or dirty bomb on our soil. Terrorists and criminals use global shipping networks, and we are deploying multiple layers of advanced technology to counter their tactics. "  [12/04/07]

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