U.S. Senator Dick Lugar (R-IN) underscored for Richard B. Norland, the U.S. Ambassador-Designate to Georgia, the importance of Nunn-Lugar bio-threat reduction programs in Georgia. Lugar discussed bio-threat efforts during Ambassador-Designate Norland's nomination hearing before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee on Wednesday. "If you are confirmed," he told Norland, "we would look forward to your attention to that important mission."
The Nunn-Lugar Central Public Health Research Laboratory was opened one year ago in Tbilisi, Georgia. "Nunn-Lugar labs are critical for advancing cooperative efforts to identify and report on deadly pathogens before they can spread," Lugar said.
The lab's mission is to promote infectious disease detection, epidemiological surveillance, and research for the benefit of the United States, Georgia, the Caucasus region, and the global community. The CPHRL facilitates an important U.S. presence in the country and attracts world-renowned experts for on-site collaboration.
"We cannot wait for threats to come to our shores," Lugar said at the time of the Laboratory's opening. "Nunn-Lugar projects make Americans safer, day by day, by working cooperatively with nations around the globe."
Senator Lugar is working to address emerging WMD threats in new locations. Building on Nunn-Lugar's nearly 20 years of experience in helping secure WMD in the former Soviet States, Senator Lugar recently undertook a mission to East Africa that was focused on biological threats.