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Nuclear News - 12/7/2010
PGS Nuclear News, December 7, 2010
Compiled By: Matthew Kapuscinski


A.  Iran
    1. World Powers Press Iran on Nuclear Issues at Talks, Associated Press (12/6/2010)
    2. Iran Says Talks With G5+1 Not to Include Uranium Enrichment: MP, Xinhua News Agency (12/6/2010)
    3. Iran Does Not Trust West for Nuclear Fuel, PressTV (12/6/2010)
    4. Iran Warns IAEA Over Leaking Confidential Info: Judiciary Chief, Xinhua News Agency (12/6/2010)
    5. On Eve of Talks, Iran Says It's Mining Own Uranium, Associated Press (12/5/2010)
    6. IAEA Must Focus on Israel: Iran Envoy, PressTV (12/4/2010)
B.  DPRK
    1. U.S. Allies, Plot North Korea Strategy - Without China, Arshad Mohammed, Reuters (12/6/2010)
    2. 'North Korea Overwhelmingly Superior to South Korea in Asymmetrical Forces': Government Data, Yonhap News Agency (12/6/2010)
    3. Seoul Doubts North Korea ‘Underwater Nuke Facility’, The Korea Herald (12/3/2010)
C.  Nonproliferation
    1. Turkey Strongly Opposed to Nuclear Proliferation in Middle East, Habib Toumi, Gulf News (12/5/2010)
    2. Russia Ready to Adjust New START Treaty - Duma Speaker, RIA Novosti (12/4/2010)
D.  Nuclear Energy
    1. Baltic States and Poland Reconfirm Their Interest in Nuclear Plant, Lithuania Tribune (12/5/2010)
    2. IAEA Will Aid UAE in Nuclear Infrastructure, The Gulf Today (12/4/2010)
    3. Turkey, Russia Accelerate Nuclear Plant Project, Hurriyet Daily News (12/3/2010)
E.  Links of Interest
    1. Iran's Nuclear Program in the Last Year, Reuters (12/6/2010)
    2. India, Areva Sign 7 Billion-Euro Contract for Nuclear Reactors, Helene Fouquet and Francois de Beaupuy, Bloomberg (12/6/2010)
    3. In IAEA Fuel Plan, India Sees Role as Supplier, The Hindu (12/6/2010)
    4. What is Uranium Enrichment?, Reuters (12/6/2010)



A.  Iran

1.
Iran Does Not Trust West for Nuclear Fuel
PressTV
12/6/2010
(for personal use only)


Iran does not trust the United States and Western countries to provide Tehran with nuclear fuel as they have repeatedly tried to hurt the Iranian people, says an expert.

"When we look at the facts that Western countries have imposed sanctions on Iran, when they have tried to impose crippling sanctions which means basically to hurt the Iranian people, when there is talk of sanctioning Iran and preventing gasoline from being exported to the country, I think that Iranians sort of look and say, 'Well, if they are going to try to prevent us from obtaining gasoline, then obviously we cannot trust anyone with nuclear fuel.'," Mohammad Marandi, a professor at Tehran University, told Press TV on Sunday.

In June, the United Nations' Security Council imposed a fourth round of sanctions against Iran's financial and military sectors over allegations that the country is pursuing a military nuclear program.

Shortly after the UN sanctions, the United States and the European Union imposed unilateral sanctions on Iran's financial and energy sectors, encouraging other countries to abandon investment in the Iranian market.

However, Iran rejects the claims, saying as a member of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) and a signatory to the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT), it has the right to use the peaceful applications of nuclear energy for electricity generation and medical research.

"At this stage, it really depends on the United States. The ball is firmly in their court. After all, the United States has invaded two of Iran's neighbors, it has dozens of naval ships in the Persian Gulf, and it is basically the Americans that are making threats against Iran, not vice versa. So, the Americans have to make the first move," Marandi concluded.

Available at:
http://www.presstv.ir/detail/154135.html


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2.
Iran Says Talks With G5+1 Not to Include Uranium Enrichment: MP
Xinhua News Agency
12/6/2010
(for personal use only)


The top Iranian lawmaker Alaeddin Boroujerdi said Monday that the multifaceted talks between Iran and the world powers will not include Tehran's nuclear program, the local satellite Press TV reported.

"If the West insists on issues which are unreal, such as the cessation of uranium enrichment in Iran, it will get nowhere and the negotiations will produce no good results," Boroujerdi was quoted as saying.

He urged the five UN Security Council permanent members plus Germany (G5+1) to turn the path of confrontation into one of interaction based on the realities, the report said.

Talks on the Iranian nuclear issue resumed on Monday, as Iran declared itself to be self-sufficient in nuclear fuel supply and voiced harsh criticism of attempts to assassinate its nuclear scientists.

The two-day closed-door meeting is being attended by Iran's chief nuclear negotiator Saeed Jalili, and European Union EU foreign affairs chief Catherine Ashton on behalf of G5+1.

Available at:
http://news.xinhuanet.com/english2010/world/2010-12/06/c_13637421.htm


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3.
Iran Warns IAEA Over Leaking Confidential Info: Judiciary Chief
Xinhua News Agency
12/6/2010
(for personal use only)


Iranian Judiciary Spokesman Gholam- Hosein Mohseni-Ejei said Monday that International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) is not allowed to collect information from Iran's nuclear facilities beyond its assigned tasks, the state IRIB TV reported.

IAEA is not permitted to collect information from Iran's nuclear facilities beyond its assigned tasks and in case they did, they have no right to give the information to the unauthorised people, Mohseni-Ejei was quoted as saying.

"The inspectors of IAEA have gone far (doing their duties) and have collected information about our nuclear scientists. The concerned (Iranian) officials say they (IAEA inspectors) have given the information about our nuclear scientists to the others," he told reporters according to IRIB.

The officials also say one of the reasons that has caused our scientists to be followed is the information leaked by IAEA and if the disclosed information has had a role in assassinating the Iranian nuclear scientists, with no doubt IAEA officials should be accountable, he was quoted as saying.

In two separate terrorist acts in northern Tehran last Monday, Iranian nuclear scientist Dr. Majid Shahriari was killed and Dr. Fereidoon Abbasi was wounded when they were driving to work.

Iranian officials accused the UN Security Council and IAEA for disclosing confidential information on Iran's nuclear scientists and also accused West and Israel for assassination on the two Iranian nuclear scientists.

Available at:
http://news.xinhuanet.com/english2010/world/2010-12/06/c_13637569.htm


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4.
World Powers Press Iran on Nuclear Issues at Talks
Associated Press
12/6/2010
(for personal use only)


Talks between Iran and six world powers recessed Monday with no sign that Tehran was ready to discuss U.N. Security Council calls to curb its nuclear activities that could be harnessed to make weapons, an official at the negotiations said.

While the two sides were scheduled to meet in a second session on Tuesday, the description of Monday's meeting by the official gave little reason to presume that Iran would relent and agree to talks specifically addressing the U.N Security Council demands.

That, in turn, would dash hopes of a renewed meeting in the new year. The U.S. and the allies have said coming into the talks that such new negotiations would hinge on Tehran agreeing at the present Geneva talks to focus on ultimately ending uranium enrichment and other activities that have sparked four sets of U.N. sanctions.

Delegates from Iran, the U.S., Russia, China, Britain, France and Germany met at a conference center in Geneva, with talks beginning after European Union foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton escorted Saeed Jalili, Iran's chief negotiator, into the session.

Tehran says it does not want atomic arms and insists its nuclear program is only designed to provide more power for its growing population. Yet as Iran builds up its capacity to make such weapons, neither Israel nor the U.S. have ruled out military action if Tehran fails to heed U.N. Security Council demands that it freeze key nuclear programs.

"About 75 percent" of Monday's three-hour morning session was devoted to nuclear issues, said the official. That raised some hope because the Islamic Republic had come to the table insisting that the negotiations address Iran's nuclear program only peripherally — if at all.

Monday's afternoon talks ran 90 minutes past schedule. Jalili, the first to emerge, smiled at reporters but said nothing. Officials said a second round of talks would be held Tuesday as scheduled.

But the official said that — although the afternoon's plenary also was mostly taken up with nuclear issues — it was dominated by Jalili's complaints about past wrongs committed by the West against his country in the nuclear field, in statements reaching back in history to 1953.

That clearly fell short of hopes from the six that Iran would at least address the Security Council demands as a start to discussions on enrichment and related issues.

"Obviously we have not made progress on the substance," said the official who agreed to discuss the closed meeting on condition of anonymity. "Iran continues not to implement a series of demands of the U.N. Security Council. We want to talk about the ways and means of doing so."

Publicly Iran continued to insist that enrichment and related programs were not on the agenda.

"We can't put them up for negotiation," Iranian Foreign Minister Manouchehr Mottaki said in Athens. "When all the countries say that they recognize Iran's right to develop peaceful nuclear technology, there is no room for such questions."

Ashton and senior officials from the six powers told Iran that doubts about the peaceful nature of its nuclear program were causing instability in the region, the official said.

Jalili spoke about other themes, including mentioning last week's assassination of an Iranian nuclear scientist and the wounding of an associate, the official said.

Iran says Majid Shahriar, the scientist killed in the bombing, was involved in a major project with Iran's nuclear agency. The wounded scientist, Fereidoun Abbasi, is suspected by the U.N. of links to secret nuclear activities. Iran has accused the West and Israel of being behind the assault.

Iran's semi-official Fars news agency said the six powers had no clear agenda and were suffering from internal rifts.

The official, in contrast, described the six as remarkably united at presenting their position at the talks,

Meir Javedanfar, an Iranian-born expert on Iran who now lives in Israel, described the talks as serving both sides without either expecting a breakthrough.

"The Iranians are doing it for domestic cohesion between the conservative faction, which has been badly polarized," he said. "(It also) improves (Iran's) image and standing with its allies in Lebanon, Afghanistan and Iraq by portraying it as a regional superpower who can bring the five major powers of the U.N. Security Council plus Germany to the table."

He called the talks "very useful" for the West because they allowed President Barack Obama "to impose the toughest sanctions against Iran to date and to isolate Iran in an unprecedented manner."

Nations have a right to enrich uranium domestically and Iran insists it is doing so only to make fuel and not to make fissile warhead material. But international concerns are strong because Tehran developed its enrichment program clandestinely and because it refuses to cooperate with an IAEA probe following up suspicions that it experimented with a nuclear weapons program — something Iran denies.

Bilateral sessions filled up much of Monday's afternoon talks, but officials refused to say whether they included one between Jalili and U.S. Undersecretary of State William Burns and their delegations.

But, underlining its commitment to enrichment, Iran on Sunday announced it had delivered its first domestically mined raw uranium to a processing facility.

Ali Akbar Salehi, head of the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran and the country's vice president, said Iran had for the first time delivered domestically mined raw uranium to a processing facility — allowing it to bypass U.N. sanctions prohibiting import of the material.

Salehi said Iran was now self-sufficient over the entire nuclear fuel cycle — from extracting uranium ore to enriching it and producing nuclear fuel.

Since Iran's clandestine enrichment program was discovered eight years ago, Iran has resisted both rewards and four sets of increasingly harsh U.N. sanctions meant to force it to freeze its enrichment program.

Israel has threatened to attack Iran, even though Israel is believed to have stockpiled more than 200 nuclear weapons and it is not a member of the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty.

U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has said it was up to Iran to restore trust about its nuclear intentions, urging it to come to Geneva prepared to "firmly, conclusively reject the pursuit of nuclear weapons."

But for Iran, the main issues are peace, prosperity — and nuclear topics only in the context of global disarmament.

"Iran has not and will not allow anybody in the talks to withdraw one iota of the rights of the Iranian nation," President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said beforehand.

Available at:
http://www.google.com/hostednews/ap/article/ALeqM5ji067qzB2qSz0JwrtbDGhgmOQC9g?docId=f1a8a83abac44ec6a88e99a5ff777121


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5.
On Eve of Talks, Iran Says It's Mining Own Uranium
Associated Press
12/5/2010
(for personal use only)


Iran delivered a resolute message Sunday on the eve of talks with six world powers: We're mining our own uranium now, so forget about stopping our nuclear ambitions.

The Islamic Republic said it has produced its first batch of locally mined uranium ore for enrichment, making it independent of foreign countries for a process the West fears is geared toward producing nuclear arms.

No matter the U.N. sanctions over the program, "our nuclear activities will proceed and they will witness greater achievements in the future," Iranian nuclear chief Ali Salehi told state-run Press TV.

Western officials downplayed the announcement, saying it had been expected and that Iran did not have enough ore to maintain the large-scale enrichment program that Tehran says it is building as a source of fuel for an envisaged network of nuclear reactors.

"Given that Iran's own supply of uranium is not enough for a peaceful nuclear energy program, this calls into further question Iran's intentions and raises additional concerns at a time when Iran needs to address the concerns of the international community," said Mike Hammer, spokesman of the U.S. National Security Council.

Sunday's announcement makes clear that Iran does not consider uranium enrichment to be up for discussion at the talks beginning Monday in Geneva. Tehran is determined to expand the program instead of scrapping it as the U.N. Security Council demands.

Expectations for the talks had been low even before the announcement, with Iran saying it is prepared to discuss nuclear issues only in the context of global disarmament. Officials from some of the six powers have said they would be pleased if negotiations yielded no more than agreement to meet at a later date to explore common themes.

The ultimate aim of the U.S., Russia, China, Britain, France and Germany is to commit Tehran to give up enrichment because of its potential use in making nuclear arms.

The talks in Geneva — the first in over a year — are meant to lay the cornerstone for establishing trust. Tehran says it does not want atomic arms, but as it builds on its capacity to potentially make such weapons, neither Israel nor the U.S. have ruled out military action if the Islamic Republic fails to heed U.N. Security Council demands to freeze enrichment and other nuclear programs.

The talks are expected to take two days. Saeed Jalili, Iran's top nuclear negotiator, will meet with EU foreign affairs chief Catherine Ashton, with Ashton's office saying she will act "on behalf" of the U.S., Russia, China, Britain, France and Germany. In fact, senior officials for those six powers will attend and do much of the talking with Tehran.

Ahead of the talks, Western officials urged Tehran to address international concerns about its nuclear activities.

Invoking possible military confrontation over Iran's nuclear defiance, British Defense Secretary Liam Fox said Saturday that the Geneva talks need to make a serious start toward resolving the issue.

"We want a negotiated solution, not a military one — but Iran needs to work with us to achieve that outcome," he said. "We will not look away or back down."

U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said it was up to Iran to restore trust about its nuclear intentions, urging it to come to Geneva prepared to "firmly, conclusively reject the pursuit of nuclear weapons."

German Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle said a nuclear-armed Iran "was unacceptable for us."

Sunday's announcement by Salehi burdened the pre-talk atmosphere, adding to tensions left by the assassination last week of a prominent Iranian nuclear scientist and the wounding of another.

Salehi, head of the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran and the country's vice president, said Iran had for the first time delivered domestically mined raw uranium to a processing facility — allowing it to bypass U.N. sanctions prohibiting import of the material.

Salehi said the uranium ore concentrate, known as yellowcake, was produced at the Gachin uranium mine in southern Iran and delivered to the uranium conversion facility in the central city of Isfahan for reprocessing.

Yellowcake is processed into uranium hexafluoride, which later can be turned into a gas used as feedstock for enriching uranium. Uranium enriched to low grades is used for fuel in nuclear reactors, but further enrichment makes it suitable for atomic bombs.

Salehi said the delivery was evidence that the mysterious bombings targeting the two Iranian nuclear scientists would not slow the country's progress.

"Today, we witnessed the shipment of the first domestically produced yellowcake ... from Gachin mine to the Isfahan nuclear facility," said Salehi, whose comments were broadcast live on state television.

Iran acquired a considerable stock of yellowcake from South Africa in the 1970s under the former U.S.-backed shah's original nuclear program, as well as unspecified quantities of yellowcake obtained from China long before the U.N. sanctions.

Western nations said last year that Iran was running out of raw uranium as that imported stockpile diminished and asserted that Tehran did not have sufficient domestic ore to run the large-scale civilian program it said it was assembling.

But Salehi denied that local stocks were lacking and said the step meant Iran was now self-sufficient over the entire nuclear fuel cycle — from extracting uranium ore to enriching it and producing nuclear fuel. He said the activity will be carried out under the supervision of the International Atomic Energy Agency and that a bigger uranium mine at Saghand, in central Iran, will be inaugurated "in the not too distant future."

Salehi did not provide details on how much yellowcake had been transferred to Isfahan, but said the shipments from now on would be carried out "continuously." State TV showed a large, covered truck apparently carrying the yellowcake.

Salehi had said in October that nuclear experts have discovered larger uranium reserves than previously thought at Gachin and were stepping up exploration of the ore.

A senior diplomat familiar with the issue from a member nation of the IAEA said that Iranian claims of domestic reserves were thought to be exaggerated. The diplomat, who is familiar with the issue, asked for anonymity because his information was confidential.

Since Iran's clandestine enrichment program was discovered eight years ago, Iran has resisted both rewards — offers of technical and economic cooperation — and four sets of increasingly harsh U.N. sanctions meant to force it to freeze its enrichment program.

Member states of the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty have a right to enrich domestically and Iran, which is a signatory, insists it wants nuclear fuel, not fissile warhead material.

But international concerns are strong because Tehran developed its enrichment program clandestinely and because it has deemed closed an IAEA probe meant to follow up on suspicions that Iran experimented with components of a nuclear weapons program. Iran denies the claimed experiments, calling them "fabrications" by the CIA that were provided to the IAEA.

Israel has threatened to attack Iran, even though Israel is believed to have stockpiled more than 200 nuclear weapons and it is not a member of the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty.

Available at:
http://www.google.com/hostednews/ap/article/ALeqM5jxrMyYJtXoXkHHB1eM-jY3NO5VyA?docId=00a8ae00742d4ef1bd97e0de4ada5ae6


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6.
IAEA Must Focus on Israel: Iran Envoy
PressTV
12/4/2010
(for personal use only)


Iran's ambassador to the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) has urged the nuclear body to switch its focus from Syria's atomic work to Israel's nuclear arsenal as the real cause for concern.

Ali Asghar Soltanieh said that Iran was deeply concerned about the IAEA's verification measures which, he said, have shifted focus from Israel's nuclear work as the “real threat” to Syria, IRNA reported on Friday.

“Those members of the [UN] Security Council that cry foul over Syria have turned a blind eye to the Israeli regime whose nuclear arsenal is the real threat against peace and security of the region and the world,” he said.

Soltanieh added that it was Israel which was to blame for attacking Syria, arguing that no attack was justifiable under the IAEA Statute and it amounted to the violation of international law.

“The Zionist regime of Israel violated the UN Charter and international regulations and law by attacking Syria,” he said, adding that it was ironic that Israel was not admonished while Syria, which was the victim of the attack, became the target of more resolutions and sanctions.

In September 2007, Israeli warplanes destroyed Syria's al-Kibar military site accusing the country of harboring a nuclear reactor there -- a claim rejected by Syria.

Soltanieh then accused Israel and its allies of having engaged the IAEA in a made-up scenario by raising "false accusations" against Syria.

“Then, the aggressor and its supporters made up a scenario using false accusations and engaged the agency in it,” he went on to say.

Regarding Syria's cooperation with the agency over verification activities, Soltanieh said that Syria had not signed the Additional Protocol and therefore was obliged only to implement the Comprehensive Safeguards Agreements, reiterating that voluntary moves should not be interpreted as binding.

In a statement to the IAEA Board of Governors on Thursday, IAEA Director General Yukiya Amano said that “Syria has not cooperated with the agency since June 2008 in connection with the unresolved issues” related to the al-Kibar site and some other locations.

“As a consequence, the agency has not been able to make progress towards resolving the outstanding issues related to those sites,” Amano added.

Amano called for more cooperation regarding the agency's verification measures in general as well as more access to relevant information and locations related to the site.

Soltanieh said that the IAEA needed to look for the source of contamination in Israel, urging the body to compile a report on Israel's missiles that destroyed the site before Tel Aviv wipes out the evidence.

Syria says the missiles that destroyed the building at the site were the source of the uranium particles. Israel rejects Syria's claim.

Available at:
http://www.presstv.ir/detail/153866.html


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B.  DPRK

1.
'North Korea Overwhelmingly Superior to South Korea in Asymmetrical Forces': Government Data
Yonhap News Agency
12/6/2010
(for personal use only)


North Korea has an overwhelming edge over South Korea in terms of asymmetrical forces with more than 200,000 special warfare troops, according to South Korean government estimates released in recent days.

Defense Minister Kim Kwan-jin said during his confirmation hearing on Friday that the North's asymmetrical forces such as strategical weapons, submarines and special warfare forces were increasingly becoming a "serious threat" to the South Korean military.

"An additional attack by the North using its asymmetrical strengths is the most serious threat as of now," Kim said.

The North is believed to have about 200,000 special warfare troops while South Korea has only 20,000, according to a recent report by the ministry to the National Assembly.

The North is also believed to have some 150 missiles, about 2,500 to 5,000 tons of chemical weapons agents and the capability of producing five to eight nuclear weapons with 30 to 40 kilograms of plutonium in storage. The South, however, has only 50 missiles and no nuclear or chemical weapons.

Due to its overwhelming inferiority, the South Korean military is depending on its combined forces with the United States to cope with the North's asymmetrical threats, the ministry said.

It also said the military has raised its alert status on cyber warfare readiness, called "Infocon," a notch from fifth to the fourth level, facing growing cyber threats from the North following its artillery attack on a South Korean border island on Nov. 23.

Tension has increased since the shelling of Yeonpyeong Island near the tense border on the Yellow Sea killed two marines and two civilians.

Available at:
http://english.yonhapnews.co.kr/national/2010/12/05/26/0301000000AEN20101205000200315F.HTML


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2.
U.S. Allies, Plot North Korea Strategy - Without China
Arshad Mohammed
Reuters
12/6/2010
(for personal use only)


The Japanese, South Korean and U.S. foreign ministers meet on Monday to plot strategy toward an increasingly provocative North Korea in the face of China's reluctance to try to rein in its sometime ally.

Secretary of State Hillary Clinton meets separately in the U.S. capital with South Korea's Kim Sung-hwan and Japan's Seiji Maehara before the three gather at 1 p.m. (1800 GMT) to discuss the North's nuclear advances and its shelling of a South Korean island.

Seoul has sharply increased its rhetoric over the past week, prompted by growing protests and public opinion polls critical of the conservative government's perceived weak response to last month's deadly shelling of Yeonpyeong island.

The November 23 attack, which killed two South Korean civilians and two soldiers, was the first time the North had struck a civilian area on South Korean soil since the end of the 1950-53 Korean war.

Dozens of homes were destroyed in the attack, which the North said was triggered by South Korea firing artillery shells into its waters. The South said its drills were routine, harmless and on its side of the disputed Northern Limit Line.

On Monday, South Korea started a nationwide live-fire naval exercise despite Pyongyang's warnings against conducting provocative drills in the disputed waters off the west coast of the divided peninsula.

Pyongyang said the latest exercise, expected to last around a week, showed the South was "hell-bent" on setting off a war.

There is no obvious diplomatic path forward on how to ease tensions, particularly given China's apparent unwillingness to condemn the North at the U.N. Security Council or otherwise exercise such leverage as it has over Pyongyang.

China is the host for so-called six-party talks among the two Koreas, China, Japan, Russia and the United States that yielded a 2005 agreement under which North Korea promised to abandon its nuclear programs but that has since unraveled.

On November 12 the North, which has conducted two nuclear tests and is believed to have enough plutonium for between six and 12 atomic bombs, showed a U.S. nuclear scientist hundreds of centrifuges, giving it a second way to make nuclear weapons.

Pyongyang said it wanted to restart the six-party talks, and has won the backing of Beijing and Moscow, but Washington, Seoul and Tokyo have said they will only return once the North shows it is sincere about denuclearizing.

It is unclear what, if any, tangible action Monday's U.S., South Korean and Japanese meeting may yield other than a joint statement condemning the North's shelling and, perhaps, a call for China to do more to restrain its volatile ally.

Available at:
http://www.reuters.com/article/idUSTRE6B50SG20101206


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3.
Seoul Doubts North Korea ‘Underwater Nuke Facility’
The Korea Herald
12/3/2010
(for personal use only)


South Korean government officials said they could not believe the WikiLeaks revelation that North Korea had a clandestine underwater nuclear facility in its coastal waters.

According to U.S. diplomatic cables disclosed by the online whistleblower Thursday, China obtained information in 2008 that North Korea had a secret submarine nuclear facility off its shores.

“It is hard to believe that the North has an underwater nuclear facility, which requires an even higher level of technology than uranium enrichment,” a Seoul official said.

“Considering the standards of the North’s nuclear complex in Yongbyon, it is doubtful that they would have such a high-tech facility.”

A senior South Korean Foreign Ministry official also said the information is not true.

“If it were true, would participating nations of the six-party talks have kept quiet?” he said.

The Sept. 26, 2008 cable from the U.S. Consulate in Shanghai showed that a North Korea expert in Shanghai said the nuclear declaration the North submitted to China, the chair of the six-party talks, in May the same year was “incomplete” and Beijing had information that the North had a secret underwater nuclear facility.

The expert made the announcement during a meeting about the six-party nuclear talks with Christopher Beede, then political and economic chief at the consulate.

The information raised a debate within the Chinese leadership over the six-party talks, he added.

Some Chinese leaders asserted that because “continued momentum in the six-party talks is critical to their success,” Washington must adopt “a more flexible attitude” toward Pyongyang, the expert said.

Others said the fact that the North concealed the possession of such a nuclear facility proved that the regime in Pyongyang was a “ticking time bomb” and that Washington’s hard-line stance was a potential opportunity to control the North.

Regarding rumors that North Korean leader Kim Jong-il was in poor physical condition, the expert said it was difficult to predict what would happen to Kim.

Any information related to Kim Jong-il’s health was a top secret among North Koreans, he said.

Available at:
http://www.koreaherald.com/national/Detail.jsp?newsMLId=20101203000603


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C.  Nonproliferation

1.
Turkey Strongly Opposed to Nuclear Proliferation in Middle East
Habib Toumi
Gulf News
12/5/2010
(for personal use only)


Turkey's foreign affairs minister said that his country was opposed to nuclear proliferation in the Middle East and Gulf region.

"We do not want to see nuclear proliferation in our region and we do not want to see any nuclear weaponry power in our region," Ahmet Davutoglu told the Manama Dialogue security conference. "Therefore, a nuclear-free zone in the Middle East is the essential backbone of our policy."

Problems and disagreements, like in the case of the Iranian nuclear programme, should be solved through diplomacy, he said.

"More diplomacy, more transparency, more international effort, more contributions from the Iranian side and from the international community is needed for a solution. Therefore, we are very happy that next week the nuclear talks will restart between P5+1 and Iran. We work very hard to contribute to this process and we will continue to support it," he said.

Davutoglu insisted that the nuclear issue was not only a regional issue.

"The nuclear issue is a global issue. If we do not have a fair approach to this nuclear issue based on international law, it is difficult to solve it," he said.

Turkey will keep its consistent policy on Iran's nuclear programme.

"From the first day, we declared three principles regarding this issue. One is all nations have the right to obtain peaceful nuclear technology and energy, based on the principles of the NPT and the IAEA. Technology does not belong to only one country or group of countries; it is not like natural gas: ‘This is my land and this natural gas is from this land, so it belongs to me.' You can say this for gas and oil, but you cannot say this for technology. All human beings contributed to technology and therefore all the nations have the right to obtain what technology we have today. But it must be peaceful nuclear technology," he said.

The second principle is that Turkey is against nuclear weapons, wherever they are.

"Nuclear weapons create a real risk for the survival of humanity. Therefore, there should be a nuclear regime, as President Obama and other leaders declared last year, where nuclear weapons will not be in this world," he said.

"The last dimension is the cultural dimension in the sense of the relationship between regional and global peace. As I said, our region is the backbone of world civilisation and we should not allow a clash of civilisations in our region. If there is cultural peace in our region, there will be cultural peace in the world. This region can contribute a lot to the cultural, political and economic future of humanity," Davutoglu told the conference.

Available at:
http://gulfnews.com/news/world/other-world/turkeyongly-opposed-to-nuclear-proliferation-in-middle-east-1.723233


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2.
Russia Ready to Adjust New START Treaty - Duma Speaker
RIA Novosti
12/4/2010
(for personal use only)


Russia's lower house of parliament, the State Duma, is ready to make amendments to the text of the new START treaty if the move is initiated by the United States, Speaker Boris Gryzlov said on Saturday.

Russian President Dmitry Medvedev and U.S. President Barack Obama signed the new treaty on April 8 in Prague to replace the START 1 agreement that expired in December 2009. It can only come into force after it is ratified by both houses of the Russian parliament and the U.S. Senate.

Russia has said it will act symmetrically with the United States regarding treaty ratification, but the treaty has met strong Republican opposition in the U.S. Senate over concerns that it may weaken U.S. anti-missile defenses.

"I hope the U.S. Congress ratifies the new START treaty, although we have already received information that they [United States] are trying to adjust and clarify the text," Gryzlov told the Rossiya TV channel. "If they do this, we will have to do the same."

"I have already ordered our international affairs committee to prepare possible adjustments to the treaty, in case such amendments are made by Congress," he added.

The Republicans won a solid majority in the U.S. congressional elections in early November, meaning President Barack Obama has until January, when the new Congressmen take up their positions, to try to push the treaty through.

The new Russian-U.S. pact obligates both nations to cap their fielded strategic nuclear weapons to 1,550 warheads, while the number of deployed and non-deployed delivery vehicles must not exceed 800 on either side.

Available at:
http://en.rian.ru/world/20101204/161623799.html


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D.  Nuclear Energy

1.
Baltic States and Poland Reconfirm Their Interest in Nuclear Plant
Lithuania Tribune
12/5/2010
(for personal use only)


Three Baltic States and Poland expressed their resolve in continuing cooperation in regional energy projects, the Prime Ministers of those countries’ declared during their meeting in Warsaw on 5 December.

It was stated that the regional partners are interested in continuing with the new nuclear power plant project in Lithuania, and building energy links, Prime Minister’s office reported. The Polish PM Donald Tusk also mentioned that construction of a liquefied gas terminal in Lithuania should be discussed among the partners. According to the press release PM Tusk stated that the new nuclear plant project in Lithuania is the most important energy project in the region.

Estonian PM Andrus Ansip confirmed that Estonia is interested in taking part in the nuclear project and would like to receive from 300 to 500 MW from the plant.

“Energy security and regional integration has become a priority in the European Union’s energy solidarity, which we are implementing with strong regional solidarity in the energy sector,” Andrius Kubilius, Lithuanian Prime Minster said in the press release.

Available at:
http://www.lithuaniatribune.com/2010/12/05/baltic-states-and-poland-reconfirm-their-interest-in-nuclear-plant/


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2.
IAEA Will Aid UAE in Nuclear Infrastructure
The Gulf Today
12/4/2010
(for personal use only)


The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) is working closely with the United Arab Emirates on the establishment of a safe and secure nuclear programme, according to the Agency’s director-general Yukiya Amano.

Amano said that a number of technical cooperation programmes were also in the pipeline, whereby the IAEA will help the UAE in developing a national nuclear energy infrastructure for power generation.

“The UAE and IAEA are also cooperating to set up a strategic e-Learning Portal for the Khalifa University of Science, Technology and Research (Kustar), considering the vital role nuclear culture and training play in developing the country’s N-programme,” he added.

Amano revealed that the IAEA was planning to send a mission to the UAE in 2011 to conduct an Integrated Nuclear Infrastructure Review (INIR) “that will help UAE’s evaluation and planning of its declared nuclear programme.”

He also said that the UAE had pledged a financial support of $10 million for the proposed IAEA-administered international low-enriched uranium fuel bank.

“The UAE is an active IAEA member since 1976 and after being elected as a member of the Agency’s Board of Governors, the country is in a position to provide a valuable contribution on the Board’s agenda,” Amano added.

Available at:
http://gulftoday.ae/portal/3afd816b-b99a-45a0-8984-99518ed8f8a1.aspx


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3.
Turkey, Russia Accelerate Nuclear Plant Project
Hurriyet Daily News
12/3/2010
(for personal use only)


Turkish officials will meet their Russian counterparts later this month to push the button on the actual launch of a nuclear power plant project, Turkish Minister of Energy and Natural Resources Taner Yıldız told reporters Friday.

Yıldız is set to meet Russian Deputy Prime Minister Igor Sechin on Dec. 13 or 14 to discuss details of works required to set up a project company.

In May, Turkey and Russia signed a deal detailing the construction of Turkey's first nuclear power plant on the southern coast.

"The nuclear power plant project is moving toward becoming an actual process. Once the project company is established we will be engaged in licensing the land in Akkuyu, delivery of the construction site and developing solutions to possible problems on the site," Yıldız told reporters at an energy conference in Istanbul.

"I believe our cooperation with the Russian Federation on this nuclear power plant project will boost mutual trade," he said.

Turkey is also set to initiate talks with Japan regarding the construction of a possible second nuclear power plant on the northern coast of the country, after talks with South Korea failed.

Turkish officials are preparing to meet Japanese officials next week to discuss the project, Yıldız said. "I think energy talks with Japan would bring an expansion in relations, especially in transportation and cultural cooperation."

Available at:
http://www.hurriyetdailynews.com/n.php?n=turkey-pussia-accelerate-nuclear-plant-project-2010-12-03


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E.  Links of Interest

1.
In IAEA Fuel Plan, India Sees Role as Supplier
The Hindu
12/6/2010
(for personal use only)
http://www.hindu.com/2010/12/06/stories/2010120656861200.htm


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2.
India, Areva Sign 7 Billion-Euro Contract for Nuclear Reactors
Helene Fouquet and Francois de Beaupuy
Bloomberg
12/6/2010
(for personal use only)
http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2010-12-06/india-areva-sign-7-billion-euro-con..


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3.
Iran's Nuclear Program in the Last Year
Reuters
12/6/2010
(for personal use only)
http://www.reuters.com/article/idUSTRE6B51XG20101206


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4.
What is Uranium Enrichment?
Reuters
12/6/2010
(for personal use only)
http://www.reuters.com/article/idUSTRE6B51Y820101206


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DISCLAIMER: Nuclear News is presented for informational purposes only. Readers are encouraged to visit the websites from which the source material originates. Views presented in any given article are those of the individual author or source and not of Partnership for Global Security. Partnership for Global Security takes no responsibility for the accuracy of information contained in any article presented in Nuclear News.

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