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Belarus-Russia draft agreement on spent nuclear fuel management okayed

MINSK ( BelTA) – Belarus President Aleksandr Lukashenko has approved a draft intergovernmental agreement on cooperation with the Russian Federation in the field of management of spent nuclear fuel. The head of state signed relevant decree No.406 on 17 November, BelTA has learned.

The draft agreement was approved as the basis for organizing negotiations. The Energy Ministry has been authorized to carry out the negotiations and sign the agreement if the sides come to terms within limits of the approved draft.

The draft international agreement stipulates a procedure for moving irradiated fuel assemblies of nuclear reactors to Russia for the sake of temporary storage with consequent processing and return of radioactive waste to Belarus. The draft agreement also stipulates Belarus' guarantees regarding the acceptance of radioactive waste and the readiness of the infrastructure for safely handling the waste.

If the agreement is signed, it will allow reducing the volume of radioactive waste thanks to waste processing in comparison with the burying of spent nuclear fuel.