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Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)


International Consortium Drops Plans for North Korean Nuclear Power Plants

31 May 2006

An international consortium has formally terminated a plan that would have established two light-water nuclear power plants in North Korea.

The New York-based Korean Peninsula Energy Development Organization, or KEDO, announced Wednesday it has officially decided to kill the plan, which was to be completed in exchange for Pyongyang's allowing United Nations nuclear inspectors into the country.

KEDO blamed North Korea's continued and repeated failure to cooperate with negotiations aimed at getting Pyongyang to give up its nuclear weapons. KEDO members - the United States, the European Union, Japan and South Korea - first agreed late last year to drop the project. They made the move official Wednesday.

The nuclear reactors were part of a 1994 deal to supply North Korea with electricity in exchange for a promise by the North to stop its nuclear weapons development.

The program was suspended in 2002 after the U.S. accused North Korea of beginning a new program to enrich uranium for weapons development.

Pyongyang reacted angrily to that decision, refusing to allow the consortium to remove equipment or documents from the country.

Some information for this report was provided by AFP, AP and Reuters.

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