Vienna: The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) on Wednesday praised next week`s nuclear terrorism summit in Washington as a "recognition" that nuclear security needed more attention.
"I would look at this summit... as a recognition that the security field has to be given more attention," the IAEA`s director of nuclear security Anita Nilsson told journalists.
"As long as there is material for (attacks) and as long as there is an interest by different groups of using the material, there is a risk and a threat."
Whether in nuclear research facilities, power plants or medical centres, nuclear security measures had to be implemented to prevent material falling into the wrong hands, she insisted.
"I think this summit will help tremendously in that regard," added Nilsson, who will attend the Washington summit as an observer, alongside IAEA director-general Yukiya Amano.
"There is also a catch-up to do when it comes to these measures because all the recognition wasn`t there some 10 years ago," she added.
The 151-member International Atomic Energy Agency provides assistance to member states on nuclear security issues, such as training, technical measures and security assessment.
It has also contributed to security arrangements for major public events, including the Athens and Beijing Olympics and the upcoming South Africa World Cup, Nilsson noted.