The Senate passed a bill Wednesday to renew a nuclear security agreement between the United States and the United Kingdom.

H.R. 5681 extends the 1958 U.S.-U.K Mutual Defense Agreement to allow continued bilateral nuclear security cooperation. That agreement has governed U.S. nuclear security cooperation with the United Kingdom for more than 50 years. 


It was set to expire at the end of the year if Congress didn’t extend it. The bill keeps the agreement alive for another 10 years.

“The United Kingdom remains the closest ally and most important security partner of the United States,” said Rep. Ed RoyceEdward (Ed) Randall RoyceLawmakers propose banning shark fin trade Bottom Line Exiting lawmakers jockey for K Street perch MORE (R-Calif.), the lead sponsor of the bill. “The Mutual Defense Agreement is a key element of our enduring ‘special relationship.’  By renewing this agreement, Congress will ensure the uninterrupted continuation of our close nuclear cooperation with the U.K. and reinforce NATO’s ability to provide strategic security for the Alliance.”

Last month, the House passed the bill by voice-vote meaning it now heads to President Obama’s desk for his signature before becoming law.

The Senate also passed through a unanimous consent agreement S. 2759, which would release the City of St. Clair, Mo., from all restrictions and limitations on the use and closure of the St. Clair Regional Airport. That bill now heads to the House for further action.