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Digital Archive International History Declassified

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South African Nuclear History

This collection provides a look at nearly twenty-five years of South African nuclear policy. These documents shed new light on the country’s unique nuclear history, from early uranium supply arrangements under the United States-South Africa Atomic Energy Bilateral to the South African response to the September 1979 Vela incident, through the early 1990s when it announced the existence and subsequent destruction of its nuclear program. This collection is a result of the partnership between the Wilson Center’s Nuclear Proliferation International History Project and Monash South Africa. See also Nuclear Proliferation, and the related collections in the Nuclear Proliferation International History Project. (Image, Pelindaba Nuclear Research Centre, South Africa, NJR ZA)

  • October 25, 1995

    Letter, South African Department of Foreign Affairs, 'Support of the South African Bid for the Supply of Electronic Warfare Equipment to the Argentine Air Force'

    Director-General writes to the Secretary for Defence to enquire as to whether the South African tender for an electronic warfare equipment deal has been successful. He suspects that the deal has already been won by Israel.

  • 1996

    Meeting Minutes, South African Department of Foreign Affairs, Handwritten Notes from a Meeting on Nuclear Proliferation

    Handwritten notes from a South African intelligence and security meeting covering topics of nonproliferation.

  • June 20, 1996

    Letter, South African Department of Foreign Affairs, 'Proposed South Africa-United States Military Committee'

    Details of the impending US Department of Defense visit to South Africa.

  • June 24, 1996

    Letter, J. P. du Preez, Regarding US Department of Defense Visit to South Africa

    Memo from Mr. Du Preez to Mr. Minty displaying dissapointment that the Department of Foreign Affairs wasn't consulted on the impending trip U.S. visit.

  • September 12, 1996

    South African Department of Foreign Affairs, 'Backgrounder for Use During the Bilateral Discussions with Iran on Disarmament and Non-proliferation of Weapons of Mass Destruction'

    Background information for use by a South African representative in bilateral discussions with Iran on disarmament and non-proliferation of weapons of mass destruction.

  • October 28, 1996

    Letter, South African Department of Foreign Affairs Director-General to the Non-Proliferation Secretariat

    Letter to D. J. van Beek, the Non-proliferation Secretary, regarding the South African National Conventional Arms Control Committee request for an interdepartmental working group on national policy on transparency in arms trade and transfers.

  • April 15, 1997

    Cable, South African Department of Foreign Affairs, 'Credentials for the Second Preparatory Commission of the Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty Organization in Vienna, 12-16 May 1997'

    Draft copy of the letter of credentials that Mr. Nzo, Minister for Foreign Affairs, will provide for the South African delegation to represent the Republic of South Africa at the Second Preparatory Commission of the Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty in Vienna in May, 1997. The delegation is to be led by Mr. Jacob Selebi.