Israel and Syria announce plans for nuclear

12 March 2010

Israel and Syria have both told a conference in Paris that they want to use nuclear power to generate electricity. The revelations came on the same day that IAEA director general called for greater access to nuclear power.

Israeli infrastructure minister Uzi Landau, told conference delegates that his country wanted to build new nuclear plants to reduce its dependence on coal.

“Naturally, all nuclear power reactors to be built in Israel will be subject to international safeguards as well as appropriate physical protection measures,” he said.

Lanadu also revealed that Israel has kept a site at Shivta the northern Negev desert for construction of a nuclear power plant.

Syria’s deputy foreign minister Faysal Mekdad said: “The peaceful application of nuclear energy should not be monopolized by the few who own the technology, but it should be available equally for all countries.”

The announcements came on 8 March at the International Conference on Access to Civil Nuclear Energy, in Paris.

IAEA head Amano also addressed the conference, calling for greater access to nuclear power. He went on to outline the importance of international cooperation in ensuring that nuclear power can be introduced and used beneficially, responsibly and sustainably by developed and developing economies alike.

French president Nicolas Sarkozy, organizer of the event told the delegates: “France will be a steadfast defender of every country’s right to access nuclear energy for peaceful purposes.”

He also called for financial institutions and development banks to make a “wholehearted commitment” to finance civil nuclear energy projects and proposed that carbon credits be introduced to finance all forms of decarbonised energy after 2013.

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