Russia, Serbia Finalize Plan to Transfer Spent Fuel

Russia and Serbia this week inked a trade agreement outlining terms for the secure repatriation, reprocessing, storage and disposal of spent Russian-origin nuclear fuel remaining at a shuttered Serbian research reactor site, the International Atomic Energy Agency announced yesterday (see GSN, July 30).

Donors have pledged sufficient funding to cover the project's estimated $25 million price tag. Sponsors include the Czech Republic, Russia, the United States, the International Atomic Energy Agency and the Washington-based Nuclear Threat Initiative (International Atomic Energy Agency release, Sept. 16).

Mohamed ElBaradei, head of the U.N. nuclear watchdog, expressed satisfaction fuel-removal deal and thanked Serbia for its work on the project, the Tanjug News Agency reported yesterday.

"Serbia has opened a new chapter in cooperation with IAEA," said Serbian Deputy Prime Minister Bozidar Delic, who spoke with ElBaradei during the IAEA General Conference in Vienna, Austria. "The agreement signed yesterday with Russia is a huge step that will help us close a difficult chapter."

The project is expected to take 18 months to complete, Delic said (Tanjug News Agency/B92, Sept. 16).

[EDITOR'S NOTE: The Nuclear Threat Initiative is the sole sponsor of Global Security Newswire, which is published independently by the National Journal Group.]

September 17, 2009
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Russia and Serbia this week inked a trade agreement outlining terms for the secure repatriation, reprocessing, storage and disposal of spent Russian-origin nuclear fuel remaining at a shuttered Serbian research reactor site, the International Atomic Energy Agency announced yesterday (see GSN, July 30).