The Federal Authority for Nuclear Regulation (FANR) and Dubai Police are hosting the National Workshop on Developing and Implementing Nuclear Security Systems and Measures for Major Public Events this week. The workshop, organised by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), is taking place in Dubai from 15th to 19th May 2023.

The primary objective of the workshop is to facilitate discussions on planning, developing, and implementing nuclear security systems for major public events. It brings together federal and local government entities from the UAE, along with international experts, to exchange insights and best practices in this field.

In his opening remarks, Colonel Expert Juma Ahmed Butti Al Falasi, Acting Deputy Director of the General Department of Transport and Rescue in Dubai Police, said, “The workshop aims to strengthen the joints efforts made to ensure readiness, enhance community awareness about radiation as well as enable participants to develop a clear understanding about planning and implementing the nuclear security plan in the areas of major events. It also seeks to discuss the responsibilities of various entities involved in organising public events as well as the importance of applying detection and response measures to support security system during events.”

Colonel Al-Falasi stated that the workshop includes very important topics that will contribute to providing participants from various entities and strategic partners with valuable knowledge about nuclear energy and dealing with radiation, given the commitment to foresee the future in various modern scientific disciplines.

Raoul Awad, Deputy Director-General for Operations at the Federal Authority for Nuclear Regulation (FANR), said, “The workshop is an important opportunity to discuss and showcase with the IAEA the experience surrounding nuclear security arrangements at major public events. The workshop is an opportunity for the participants to maximize their learning benefits from addressing challenges and discuss solutions in regards nuclear security measures in major events. The UAE Case Study on hosting Dubai Expo 2020 is an opportune example showing the efforts orchestrated among relevant entities to ensure public safety in hosting such high-profile events.”

The workshop included case studies from the UAE, particularly regarding its nuclear security arrangements for global events held in the country. It also featured case studies from the United Kingdom and Egypt, highlighting their hosting of COP26 and COP27, respectively, which necessitated stringent nuclear security measures to detect any unauthorised activity involving radioactive materials. Additionally, during the workshop, the IAEA conducted a tabletop exercise in which Dubai Police and FANR showcased their arrangements during the Dubai Expo2020 technical visit.

FANR regulates the nuclear and radiation sectors in the UAE to ensure the safe, secure and peaceful use of these materials. It has a robust regulatory framework in which it issues regulations and regulatory guides. Furthermore, it issues licenses for facilities that use radioactive material to ensure the community and the environment are safe.