Radioactive Waste Management Facility

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Last Updated: August 17, 2012
Other Name: Radioactive Waste Management Center [1]
Location: Der Al-Hadjar Research Center, near Damascus
Subordinate To: Radioactive Waste Management Division (RWMD), Atomic Energy Commission of Syria (AECS)
Size: Unknown
Facility Status: Operational

With the help of an IAEA technical assistance project that began in 1999 and ended in 2007, Syria established a radioactive waste management facility for the safe handling, processing and temporary storage of conditioned waste from institutional applications of radioisotopes. [2] The facility is able to address and handle all the relevant waste control operations in Syria's nuclear program, including the waste arising from oil drilling, uranium mining, and phosphoric acid purification. [3] The facility is not capable of processing plutonium and does not pose a proliferation risk. [4]

In 2010, the IAEA sent letters to Syria requesting information about "the possible presence of undeclared nuclear material at waste management facilities under the control of the AECS." [5] Syria acknowledged the existence of previously undeclared material, which the Agency verified in a visit to the Der Al-Hadjar center in April 2011. [6]

Sources:
[1] IAEA-TC Project SYR/4/008, "Radioactive Waste Management Facility," Country: Syrian Arab Republic, www-tc.iaea.org.
[2] Nuclear Programmes in the Middle East: In the shadow of Iran, ed. Mark Fitzpatrick (London: The International Institute for Strategic Studies, 2008), p. 78.
[3] IAEA-TC Project SYR/4/008, "Radioactive Waste Management Facility," Country: Syrian Arab Republic, www-tc.iaea.org.
[4] Nuclear Programmes in the Middle East: In the shadow of Iran, ed. Mark Fitzpatrick (London: The International Institute for Strategic Studies, 2008), p. 78.
[5] IAEA, "Implementation of the NPT Safeguards Agreement in the Syrian Arab Republic," Report by the Director General to the Board of Governors, GOV/2010/63, 23 November 2010, www.iaea.org.
[6] IAEA, "Implementation of the NPT Safeguards Agreement in the Syrian Arab Republic," Report by the Director General to the Board of Governors, GOV/2011/30, 24 May 2011, www.iaea.org.

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