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Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Russian Enrichment Site Could Open in January

A Russian uranium enrichment site in Siberia could begin producing fuel for other nations’ nuclear energy needs next month, the Associated Press reported (see GSN, Nov. 1).

Operations at the facility at the Angarsk Electrolysis Chemical Plant could begin Jan. 25, following approval of an agreement with Kazakhstan, Federal Atomic Energy Agency chief Sergei Kiriyenko told Russian news agencies.

Kazakhstan would provide uranium for enrichment at the center.

“All conditions for the center’s work will have been established by late January,” Kiriyenko said.

Russia hopes that providing fuel to countries developing nuclear power plants would ensure they do not turn their programs toward atomic weapons, AP reported. Nations must accept International Atomic Energy Agency safeguards and make other nonproliferation concessions in order to receive the reactor fuel (Associated Press/International Herald Tribune, Dec. 18).
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