President Obama sent a letter to the Congress, dated June 18, 2012, exerting his authority under section 202 (d) of the National Emergencies Act (50 U.S.C. 1622 (d) to declare that weapons grade fissile material in Russia constitutes a “unusual and extraordinary national security threat to the United States.”
Fissile material includes highly-enriched weapons grade uranium and plutonium ( over 80% Pu-238).
In the letter the President writes:
“It remains a major national security goal of the United States to ensure that fissile material removed from Russian nuclear weapons pursuant to various arms control and disarmament agreements is dedicated to peaceful uses, subject to transparency measures, and protected from diversion to activities of proliferation concern. The accumulation of a large volume of weapons-usable fissile material in the territory of the Russian Federation continues to pose an unusual and extraordinary threat to the national security and foreign policy of the United States. For this reason, I have determined that it is necessary to continue the national emergency declared with respect to the risk of nuclear proliferation created by the accumulation of a large volume of weapons-usable fissile material in the territory of the Russian Federation and maintain in force these emergency authorities to respond to this threat.”
The letter ends by saying:
“I have sent to the Federal Register for publication the enclosed notice stating that the emergency declared in Executive Order 13159 of June 21, 2000, with respect to the risk of nuclear proliferation created by the accumulation of a large volume of weapons-usable fissile material in the territory of the Russian Federation is to continue beyond June 21, 2012.”
The letter, together with the accompanying papers, was then referred to the Committee on Foreign Affairs, according to the Congressional Record (see: http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/CREC-2012-06-18/pdf/CREC-2012-06-18.pdf ).