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Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)

Iranian Bushehr safe and secure - nuclear safety chief

RIA Novosti

18:51 14/05/2011

MOSCOW, May 14 (RIA Novosti) - Iranian Bushehr nuclear plant operates in safe and secure condition, ISNA news agency quoted on Saturday the Head of Iranian nuclear safety system center Naser Rastkhah as saying.

"Bushehr nuclear facility is different from those in Russia, since it obeys standards of both Russia and the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) and we have frequently called for Russia to certify safety of the nuclear power plant," Rastkhah told ISNA.

He also said Iran was against providing atomic reactors for developing countries which lack scientific and nuclear research capability.

On April 8, Bushehr's reactor was loaded with nuclear fuel again after an inspection and a clean-up of the reactor.

Iran had to unload fuel due to safety concerns in February. Russia said a breakdown in one the reactor's cooling pumps necessitated the removal of 163 fuel rods from its core.

The fuel for Bushehr was provided by Russia, which completed the long-delayed construction of the plant last summer. The plant was expected to start feeding electricity into the national grid in February.

Under a bilateral agreement, which has received approval from the International Atomic Energy Agency, Russia will initially operate the plant, supplying its fuel and taking away all the spent fuel for the next two or three years, but will eventually hand over full control to Iran.

Iran is subject to a series of UN Security Council sanctions over its refusal to stop uranium enrichment.

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