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Daily News: 03/2012

March 30, 2012

Ilya Arkhipov & Stepan Kravchenko, "Iran Breaks UN Resolutions on Nuclear Program, Russia Says" Bloomberg / March 30, 2012 March 30 (Bloomberg) -- Iran is breaching United Nations resolutions and increasing the size of its nuclear program amid an "alarming" escalation in global rhetoric toward its atomic plans, Russia's Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov said.... View Source ›

Jason Koebler, "Expert: Nuclear Power Is On Its Deathbed" U.S. News & World Report / March 30, 2012 After the Fukushima power plant disaster in Japan last year, the rising costs of nuclear energy could deliver a knockout punch to its future use in the United States, according to a researcher at the Vermont Law School Institute for Energy and the Environment.... View Source ›

Kelly Olsen, "Pyongyang's New Leader, Nuclear Policy Worry Tokyo " Wall Street Journal / March 29, 2012 TOKYO—North Korea's development of nuclear and ballistic missile technology against the uncertain political background of a young leader attempting to consolidate power marks a potential new level of danger for regional security, according to a report by the research arm of Japan's Ministry of Defense.... View Source ›

"Lithuania wraps up talks with Hitachi on nuclear plant" Reuters / March 30, 2012 VILNIUS, March 30 (Reuters) - Lithuania took a significant step forward on Friday toward realising plans for Japan's Hitachi to build a new nuclear plant by 2020-2022, as the country seeks to reduce its dependence on Russian energy.... View Source ›

"Solve Iran nuclear programme issue through talks: BRICS" PTI / March 29, 2012 Concerned over the situation developing around Iran's nuclear issue, India, China, Russia, Brazil and South Africa on Thursday warned any military action could result in "disastrous consequences" and pushed for dialogue and diplomatic efforts to resolve the problem.... View Source ›

"Japan to lift entry ban on some Fukushima nuclear no-go zones" MSNBC / March 30, 2012 Japan said on Friday it would lift entry bans on some cities in Fukushima prefecture that had been designated no-go zones due to their proximity to a nuclear power plant crippled by a powerful earthquake and tsunami last March.... View Source ›

Timothy Gardner & Arshad Mohammed, "Obama likely to find oil market can handle Iran sanctions" Reuters / March 30, 2012 (Reuters) - U.S. President Barack Obama is likely to determine by Friday that there will be enough oil in the world market to allow countries to cut imports from Iran, taking another step toward sanctioning those nations that do not, analysts and a congressional aide said.... View Source ›

March 29, 2012

"Turkey voices support for Iran nuclear programme" Agence France-Presse / March 29, 2012 TEHRAN — Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Thursday voiced his country's unwavering support for Tehran's nuclear ambitions in a meeting with Iran's President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, according to an official statement.... View Source ›

Viola Gienger & Tony Capaccio , "Iran’s Centrifuge ‘Workshops’ Complicate Israel Raid Planning" Bloomberg / March 29, 2012 Iran’s Centrifuge ‘Workshops’ Complicate Israel Raid Planning... View Source ›

Mark Hosenball & John Shiffman, "US, European officials probe Iran nuclear smuggling" Reuters / March 29, 2012 (Reuters) - A dramatic expansion in nuclear and military smuggling investigations should lead to a flood of new criminal cases, primarily against Iranian and Chinese middlemen, U.S. law enforcement officials said on Wednesday. ... View Source ›

"U.S. Calls Off Food Assistance to North Korea Ahead of Rocket Launch" Global Security Newswire / March 29, 2012 The U.S. Defense Department on Wednesday said it was putting on hold a program to send food assistance to North Korea as a consequence of the regime's plans to send a long-range rocket into space next month, Reuters reported (see GSN, March 27).... View Source ›

"Iran ready to talk about nuclear program" UPI / March 29, 2012 BEIJING, March 29 (UPI) -- Iran is ready to resume negotiations with EU member states next month regarding a nuclear enrichment program, the Iranian foreign minister said.... View Source ›

"Auditors Seek Review Plan, Spending Data for Counterproliferation Program" Global Security Newswire / March 29, 2012 The State and Defense departments should establish a system for evaluating the accomplishments of a U.S.-led international effort that seeks to prevent the trafficking of weapons of mass destruction and regularly provide all legislatively mandated spending data for the effort, congressional investigators said in a report published on Tuesday (see GSN, Dec. 10, 2010).... View Source ›

"French nuclear physicist accused of plotting attacks with Al Qaeda goes on trial" Associated Press / March 29, 2012 PARIS – A former nuclear physicist went on trial in Paris on Thursday on accusations of plotting attacks with the North African wing of Al Qaeda. But his defenders say he only sent some angry emails and fear he may be unfairly linked with a gunman who recently sowed terror in southern France.... View Source ›

March 28, 2012

"UN atomic agency releases report of new Japan nuclear safety measures" UN News Centre / March 27, 2012 27 March 2012 – The United Nations atomic energy agency today delivered its review of Japan’s revised nuclear safety assessment process a year after the country was shaken by one of the world’s worst nuclear accidents at the Fukushima Daiichi power plant. ... View Source ›

"Iran to Participate in Nuclear Talks " Voice of America / March 28, 2012 Iran's foreign minister says he expects a new round of talks with world powers on the country's nuclear program to begin April 13, but that a venue has not been set.... View Source ›

Sangwon Yoon & Yuji Okada Yukiya Amano, director general of the International Atomic Energy Agency in Vienna, spoke to reporters, "IAEA’s Amano Says His Focus Is Nuclear Sites, Not Missile" Bloomberg / March 28, 2012 Yukiya Amano, director general of the International Atomic Energy Agency in Vienna, spoke to reporters in Seoul today after meeting government officials. He was also in the South Korean capital for the Nuclear Security Summit, which ended yesterday. ... View Source ›

"Bulgaria abandons Belene nuclear plant plans - radio" Reuters / March 28, 2012 SOFIA, March 28 (Reuters) - Bulgaria has abandoned plans to build the 2,000 megawatt Belene nuclear power plant on the Danube River and will construct a new gas power plant instead, a deputy finance minister was quoted as saying on Wednesday.... View Source ›

"Nuclear Security Summit Commits To Mitigate Threat Of Nuclear Terrorism " RTT News / March 28, 2012 (RTTNews) - World leaders attending the Nuclear Security Summit in the South Korean capital Seoul have issued a joint communique renewing their commitment to work toward strengthening nuclear security, reducing the threat of nuclear terrorism, and preventing unauthorized acquisition of nuclear materials.... View Source ›

Kim Tae-gyu, "Korea to build nuclear plant for Vietnam" Korea Times / March 28, 2012 A few decades ago, the two countries were on opposite sides in the Cold War era. Now, they are seeking ways for win-win business solutions. ... View Source ›

"Proposed U.S. Nuclear Arms Curbs Not "Unilateral": Panetta" Global Security Newswire / March 27, 2012 Plans presented to President Obama for possibly decreasing the size of the U.S. nuclear stockpile were each formulated with an eye toward potential corresponding moves by Russia, Defense Secretary Leon Panetta said on Monday (see GSN, March 26).... View Source ›

March 26, 2012

Steve Herman , "Obama Meets with Leaders of China, Russia to Discuss Nuclear Security" Voice of America / March 26, 2012 U.S. President Obama met with the leaders of Russia and China ahead of a nuclear non-proliferation summit Monday in the South Korean capital. He also delivered a speech calling on the North Koreans to “have the courage to pursue peace” and “take irreversible steps” to meet their international obligations. The president also cautioned Iran that time is running out to resolve its own nuclear standoff.... View Source ›

"Japan shuts down another nuclear reactor, leaving only one operational in country " Associated Press / March 26, 2012 TOKYO – Another Japanese nuclear reactor was taken off line for maintenance on Monday, leaving the country with only one of its 54 reactors operational following last year's devastating earthquake and tsunami.... View Source ›

"Talks overshadowed by North Korea nuclear threat" ABC / March 26, 2012 Julia Gillard is in South Korea to join representatives from 53 nations for an international security conference on nuclear fissile material that could make bombs. The North Koreans have overshadowed talks with their plan to launch a satellite next month. What worries delegates is that the kind of ballistic missile that can hurl a satellite into space could also carry a nuclear weapon.... View Source ›

"Diplomats: Iran nuke talks on for April 13 but dispute over venue persists" Associated Press / March 26, 2012 VIENNA — Iran and six world powers have agreed to meet on April 13 for new talks about Tehran’s nuclear program, but the failure of previous meetings and disputes over what should be discussed are keeping them from choosing a venue, diplomats told The Associated Press on Monday.... View Source ›

Yuriy Humber, Sangim Han & Shinhye Kang, "Nuclear Industry Says Back on Track After Fukushima `Speed Bump’" Bloomberg / March 25, 2012 Within months of the Fukushima nuclear disaster, the worst in 25 years, Germany, Belgium and Italy vowed to quit atomic energy. Twelve months on, the nuclear industry says it’s almost back to business as usual. ... View Source ›

"Last enriched uranium rumbles out of Ukraine" Reuters / March 26, 2012 The 19 kilograms (42 pounds) of spent highly enriched uranium, loaded in four containers onto rail carriers in a high-security operation, was the last such material to be removed from the ex-Soviet republic under a two-year program with the United States and Russia.... View Source ›

"Pakistan needs nuclear technology to meet energy needs: Gilani" Associated Press of Pakistan / March 26, 2012 SEOUL: Prime Minister Syed Yousuf Raza Gilani on Monday urged the international community to give Pakistan access to nuclear technology for peaceful uses on a non-discriminatory basis.... View Source ›

March 23, 2012

Tabassum Zakaria & Mark Hosenball, "Special Report: Intel shows Iran nuclear threat not imminent" Reuters / March 23, 2012 (Reuters) - The United States, European allies and even Israel generally agree on three things about Iran's nuclear program: Tehran does not have a bomb, has not decided to build one, and is probably years away from having a deliverable nuclear warhead. ... View Source ›

Mark Landler, "North Korea and Iran Will Dominate Nuclear Summit Meeting in Seoul" New York Times / March 23, 2012 SEOUL, South Korea — President Obama will join the leaders of more than 50 countries here next week for a nuclear security summit meeting, where fears about two rogue states, North Korea and Iran, will loom over a meeting ostensibly about the perils of nuclear terrorism. ... View Source ›

"Scientist Receives 13-Year Prison Term for Spying" Global Security Newswire / March 23, 2012 A federal judge on Wednesday handed a 13-year prison term to a Maryland scientist who pleaded guilty to attempted espionage for seeking to give confidential data to a fake Israeli intelligence officer, the Associated Press reported (see GSN, Sept. 9, 2011).... View Source ›

Indira A.R. Lakshmanan & Pratish Narayanan , "U.S. Wants Iran Oil Buyers to Pledge Cuts or Risk Sanctions" Bloomberg / March 23, 2012 The Obama administration wants China, India and 10 other nations to present plans detailing how they will curtail Iranian oil imports, saying past cuts aren’t enough to win them an exclusion from new U.S. sanctions. ... View Source ›

"Obama heads to South Korea for nuclear nonproliferation summit, visit DMZ, US troops" Associated Press / March 23, 2012 WASHINGTON — President Barack Obama heads to Seoul, South Korea, late Friday for an international summit on keeping nuclear weapons material out of the hands of terrorists.... View Source ›

Lee Michael Katz, "Ross: Diplomatic Hopes Increase for Iran, But Force May be Needed" Global Security Newswire / March 23, 2012 WASHINGTON -- The use of military force will ultimately be necessary if diplomacy fails to prevent Iran from being able to make a nuclear weapon, according a former key Obama White House official (see GSN, March 22).... View Source ›

Osamu Tsukimori, "Japan mayors, governors want nuclear safety assurances" Reuters / March 23, 2012 TOKYO (Reuters) - Most Japanese mayors and governors whose communities host nuclear plants want fresh safety assurances beyond government-imposed stress tests before agreeing to the restart of reactors taken off line after the Fukushima crisis, a Reuters poll showed, amid concerns about a looming power crunch this summer.... View Source ›

March 22, 2012

"North Korea, IAEA Discuss Resuming Inspections" Global Security Newswire / March 22, 2012 The International Atomic Energy Agency on Thursday said it has started formal discussions on going back to North Korea, Reuters reported (see GSN, March 21).... View Source ›

Julian Borger, "Nuclear watchdog chief accused of pro-western bias over Iran" The Guardian / March 22, 2012 The head of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), the nuclear watchdog at the heart of the growing Iranian crisis, has been accused by several former senior officials of pro-western bias, over-reliance on unverified intelligence and of sidelining sceptics.... View Source ›

"Dropping British Nukes Would Cut $132B in Costs, Analysis Says" Global Security Newswire / March 22, 2012 The United Kingdom could eliminate $131.9 billion in expenses in coming decades by dismantling its submarine-based nuclear deterrent, a London-based think tank said in an assessment issued on Wednesday (see GSN, March 6).... View Source ›

"Ukraine Completely Removes Highly Enriched Uranium" Worldwide News Ukraine / March 22, 2012 Today Ukraine has fulfilled its obligations and removed its entire stock of highly-enriched uranium (HEU), reported press office of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine. Such transfer became possible through the support of the United States and the International Atomic Energy Agency, acknowledged the Ukrainian government.... View Source ›

"U.N. Security Council Panel Reports Alleged Iran Sanctions Breaches" Global Security Newswire / March 22, 2012 An alleged Iranian weapons shipment to Syria could violate international penalties aimed at curbing Tehran's disputed atomic activities, a U.N. Security Council panel said on Wednesday (see GSN, March 21).... View Source ›

"Major waste contract for US DoE site" World Nuclear News / March 22, 2012 A $200 million contract awarded to a partnership led by EnergySolutions will see the removal of all above-ground transuranic wastes from the US Department of Energy's (DoE's) Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL) in New Mexico by June 2014.... View Source ›

"Obama to Pursue Nuclear Safety, Security, Nonproliferation at Summit" Voice of America / March 22, 2012 President Obama is preparing for the second Nuclear Security Summit next Tuesday in Seoul. The president and other world leaders hope to better secure stocks of nuclear weapons and make nuclear energy safer.... View Source ›

March 20, 2012

"IAEA Invited Back to North Korea" Global Security Newswire / March 20, 2012 The International Atomic Energy Agency said on Monday it has been formally invited to come back to North Korea after a three-year absence, the Associated Press reported (see GSN, March 19).... View Source ›

"Khamenei: Iran will strike back if attacked" Associated Press / March 20, 2012 (AP) TEHRAN, Iran - Tehran will retaliate against any attack by Israeli or American forces "on the same level," Iran's top leader said Tuesday in a defiant address just moments after U.S. President Barack Obama appealed directly to the Iranian people with a message of solidarity.... View Source ›

Choe Sang-hun, "North Korean Satellite Plan to Loom Over Meeting" New York Times / March 20, 2012 SEOUL, South Korea — When regional powers gather in Seoul next week to discuss nuclear terrorism, they will have to deal with another urgent matter: how to pressure North Korea to cancel its plans to launch a satellite, President Lee Myung-bak of South Korea said Tuesday. ... View Source ›

"U.S. says looking for more ways to pressure Iran" Reuters / March 20, 2012 (Reuters) - The Obama administration is looking for more ways to stop Iran from acquiring nuclear weapons and is encouraged by the help it is getting from Tehran's largest trading partners, Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner said on Tuesday. ... View Source ›

Patrick Donahue, "Israel’s Barak Casts Doubt on Iranian Cooperation Ahead of Talks" Bloomberg / March 20, 2012 Israeli Defense Minister Ehud Barak cast doubt on Iran’s willingness to cooperate with international negotiators as he repeated his view that economic sanctions won’t be sufficient to respond to a nuclear threat. ... View Source ›

Sangim Han , "South Korea Must Revise U.S. Nuclear Accord Terms, Group Says" Bloomberg / March 19, 2012 South Korea should revise a bilateral nuclear accord with the U.S. so that it can export reactor technology in an expanding global atomic power plant market, a Seoul-based private research institute said. ... View Source ›

Rick Gladstone, "Strained by Sanctions, Iran Eases Money Policy" New York Times / March 19, 2012 Pressured by tightened Western economic sanctions and a burgeoning black market for dollars, with Iranian citizens desperate to buy them, Iran’s central bank has loosened its strict foreign exchange policy, allowing money traders there to sell dollars for rials at the unofficial market rate, rather than the artificially fixed official rate.... View Source ›

March 16, 2012

"Top Iran official calls for cooperation from West in return for 'transparency'" CNN / March 15, 2012 Iran says it wants more clarity from the IAEA before it allows inspectors into the Parchin military complex south of Tehran, one of Iran's most influential officials said Wednesday.... View Source ›

"Indian Atomic Scientist Reports Laptop Theft" Global Security Newswire / March 16, 2012 An Indian nuclear researcher raised an alarm when his laptop, reportedly filled with critical data, was pilfered from a passenger rail car, India Blooms News Service reported on Thursday (see GSN, Jan. 13).... View Source ›

"Lieberman: International community can stop Iran's nuclear program" Haaretz / March 16, 2012 Israel hopes sanctions and negotiations will persuade the Iranian government to end its nuclear program, Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman said Friday. ... View Source ›

Fredrik Dahl, "IAEA: "significant" nuclear growth despite Fukushima" Reuters / March 16, 2012 VIENNA, March 16 (Reuters) - Global use of nuclear energy could increase by as much as 100 percent in the next two decades on the back of growth in Asia, even though groundbreakings for new reactors fell last year after the Fukushima disaster, a U.N. report says.... View Source ›

"Pakistan Again Blocks Conference on Disarmament Work Plan" Global Security Newswire / March 16, 2012 Pakistan has refused to endorse a draft work plan for the international Conference on Disarmament in Geneva, Switzerland, once again taking issue with proposals for discussing a potential ban the production of nuclear-weapon material, the United Nations Office at Geneva said on Thursday (see GSN, March 14).... View Source ›

"North Korea plans to launch long-range rocket" Associated Press / March 16, 2012 PYONGYANG, North Korea (AP) — North Korea plans to blast a satellite into space next month to mark the centenary of the birth of its founder, Kim Il Sung, which the U.S. quickly called a "deal-breaker" for a new agreement where the U.S. would exchange food aid for nuclear concessions.... View Source ›

"South Korea to Display New Anti-Nuclear Terrorism Technology at Summit" Global Security Newswire / March 16, 2012 South Korea on Wednesday said it would use this month's high-profile Nuclear Security Summit to show off indigenously developed technology aimed at curbing the threat of nuclear terrorism, the Korea Times reported (see GSN, March 15).... View Source ›

March 16, 2012

"Top Iran official calls for cooperation from West in return for 'transparency'" CNN / March 15, 2012 Iran says it wants more clarity from the IAEA before it allows inspectors into the Parchin military complex south of Tehran, one of Iran's most influential officials said Wednesday.... View Source ›

"Lieberman: International community can stop Iran's nuclear program" Haaretz / March 16, 2012 Israel hopes sanctions and negotiations will persuade the Iranian government to end its nuclear program, Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman said Friday. ... View Source ›

Fredrik Dahl, "IAEA: "significant" nuclear growth despite Fukushima" Reuters / March 16, 2012 VIENNA, March 16 (Reuters) - Global use of nuclear energy could increase by as much as 100 percent in the next two decades on the back of growth in Asia, even though groundbreakings for new reactors fell last year after the Fukushima disaster, a U.N. report says.... View Source ›

"North Korea plans to launch long-range rocket" Associated Press / March 16, 2012 PYONGYANG, North Korea (AP) — North Korea plans to blast a satellite into space next month to mark the centenary of the birth of its founder, Kim Il Sung, which the U.S. quickly called a "deal-breaker" for a new agreement where the U.S. would exchange food aid for nuclear concessions.... View Source ›

March 15, 2012

"U.S. denies sending warning to Iran via Russia" Reuters / March 15, 2012 (Reuters) - The United States denied on Thursday a Russian media report that Secretary of State Hillary Clinton had asked Russia to warn Iran that it was facing its "last chance" to resolve the dispute over its nuclear program diplomatically.... View Source ›

"Seoul anticipates nuclear talks with DPRK" UPI / March 15, 2012 SEOUL, March 15 (UPI) -- A spokesman for the South Korean Foreign Ministry said the government expected to discuss letting U.N. nuclear inspectors back into North Korea.... View Source ›

Elaine M. Grossman, "U.S. Senator Presses Nuclear Agency on Lack of Future Funding Details" Global Security Newswire / March 15, 2012 WASHINGTON -- A Senate panel chairman on Wednesday questioned why the U.S. National Nuclear Security Administration has withheld future funding figures for key atomic complex programs in its fiscal 2013 budget request, contrary to a reporting requirement in law (see GSN, Feb. 17).... View Source ›

Rachel Oswald, "TSA Foresees 100% Inbound Passenger Air Cargo Screening by Year’s End" Global Security Newswire / March 15, 2012 WASHINGTON -- The Transportation Security Administration anticipates that by December all international U.S.-bound passenger aircraft will have their cargo scanned for weapons of mass destruction and other threats prior to liftoff (see GSN, March 11, 2011).... View Source ›

"Deployed Russian Warheads Could Exceed 2,400, Experts Say" Global Security Newswire / March 15, 2012 Russia near the beginning of this year appeared to have roughly 2,430 nuclear warheads deployed on active land-, air- and sea-based delivery platforms, though only around 1,560 of the armaments are covered by limits set under a bilateral strategic arms control treaty with the United States, the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists reported in its latest edition (see GSN, Feb. 27).... View Source ›

"Sanctions vice tightens on Iran over nuclear dispute" Reuters / March 15, 2012 LONDON/BRUSSELS, March 15 (Reuters) - The sanctions vice is tightening on Iran, cutting it out of key global financial networks, but Tehran is taking urgent steps to withstand the pressure over a nuclear programme the West suspects is intended to produce bombs.... View Source ›

"Scotland: Nuclear Power Dropping In Favor Of Renewable Energy " Huffington Post / March 15, 2012 Around the globe, many countries have set 2020 renewable energy goals with the hope of reducing emissions and dependence on expensive foreign oil and gas imports.... View Source ›

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