N-weapons threat, challenge for intl community:Obama

Seoul: US President Barack Obama today warned that the threat of nuclear weapons remains a challenge as there are still "too many bad actors in search of these dangerous materials", asserting that the world`s security depends on the actions that the global community takes.

"There are still too many bad actors in search of these dangerous materials, and these dangerous materials are still vulnerable in too many places," Obama said at the Nuclear Security Summit here.

"It would not take much – just a handful or so of these materials – to kill hundreds of thousands of innocent people. And that`s not an exaggeration; that`s the reality that we face," he said.

Even as the international community has taken a series of steps in the past two years to secure the world`s nuclear material, he said the threat of nuclear terrorism still remains a potent challenge. "The security of the world depends on the actions that we take," the US President said.

Two years ago at the first Nuclear Security Summit in Washington, the world leaders, Obama said, had agreed that atomic terrorism is one of the most urgent and serious threats to global security.

"We agreed to the goal of securing the world`s nuclear materials in four years. We committed ourselves to specific and concrete actions. To get this done, we agreed a new effort of sustained and effective international cooperation was required, that we would need to create an architecture in which we could share best practices, help to enforce many of the commitments that we had already made, and continue to improve every aspect of this issue," Obama said.

"Over the past two years, the questions have been different — would we back up our words with deeds; would we sustain our cooperation. Today, here in Seoul, we can answer with a resounding yes. We are fulfilling the commitments we made in Washington," Obama said.

The US-led international community, he said, is improving security at their nuclear facilities. "We are forging new partnerships. We are removing nuclear materials, and in some cases, getting rid of these materials entirely. And as a result, more of the world`s nuclear materials will never fall into the hands of terrorists who would gladly use them against us," Obama said. "Of course, what`s also undeniable is that the threat remains," he warned.