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Ukraine Crisis Threatens to Overshadow World Nuclear Summit

Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte is seen at a news conference on the eve of a Nuclear Security Summit in The Hague March 23, 2014.Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte is seen at a news conference on the eve of a Nuclear Security Summit in The Hague March 23, 2014.
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Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte is seen at a news conference on the eve of a Nuclear Security Summit in The Hague March 23, 2014.
Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte is seen at a news conference on the eve of a Nuclear Security Summit in The Hague March 23, 2014.
VOA News
World leaders are meeting Monday in the Netherlands for a nuclear security summit that is expected to be overshadowed by the ongoing crisis in Ukraine.
 
The two-day meeting in The Hague brings together delegations from 53 countries to discuss reducing and securing nuclear supplies.
 
Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte said Sunday ahead of the summit that nuclear material has many good uses, such as energy and medical research, but that in the wrong hands could cause "massive social disruption."
 
"The chance that nuclear or radioactive material could fall into the hands of terrorists is small, fortunately. But if it were to happen the consequences could be enormous. We need to do everything we can to prevent nuclear terrorism and we have gathered here with that clear aim," said Rutte.
 
Russian President Vladimir Putin is not taking part in the summit, instead sending Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, who is expected to hold separate talks with U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry.
 
The summit will also provide an opportunity for leaders of the Group of Seven nations to hold an emergency meeting on Russia's annexation of Crimea. The leaders of Britain, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan and the U.S. are scheduled to meet Monday afternoon.
 
Notable absentees from the nuclear summit are North Korea and Iran.

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