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Sergei Mitrokhin and environmentalists state that a number of Russian atomic energy objects are not properly guarded.

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Deputy of the State Duma Sergei Mitrokhin (Yabloko faction) and representatives of the environmental organisation "Greenpeace of Russia" state that some Russian atomic energy objects are not guarded properly.

On Friday, February 15, 2002, at a press conference organised in the central office of Interfax, Moscow, they told journalists how they managed to enter through a "huge hole in the barbed wire" the safeguarded zone of the mining complex in Zheleznogorsk, Krasnoyarsk Territory, and "reach the walls" of the depository of spent nuclear waste.

According to environmentalists, the total activity of the fuel, preserved in this depository, amounts to 3 bln Curies.

Mitrokhin also expressed his concerns, as "anyone can approach this depository of extremely dangerous materials". He also stated that the Ministry of Nuclear Power plans to bring here another 20,000 tonnes of imported nuclear waste. At the same time, experts state, "several dozen kilogrammes of explosives" will suffice to destroy this depository.

A video cassette, filming how the environmentalists reached the nuclear facility, was forwarded to the President of Russia and to the Federal Security Bureau. According to the environmentalists, "if Russia joins the fight with international terrorism, it should at least protect its rear."

According to Mitrokhin, Russia "is not prepared for imports of spent nuclear fuel not only in terms of security, but also owing to its failure to learn how to handle nuclear waste."

Mitrokhin also said that this had been demonstrated by the January report of the Audit Chamber of the Russian Federation, when it described the performance of the special federal programme on handling nuclear waste to beunsatisfactory.

Based on Interfax reports.
See also:
Nuclear Waste Bill
Greenpeace of Russia website

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