Publishe Date: 3:07 PM - 1/5/2014 | Print

AEOI Chief: Iran to Turn Off Bushehr N. Power Plant for Refueling

Politics - Head of the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran (AEOI) Ali Akbar Salehi announced that the country’s first nuclear power plant in the Southern province of Bushehr needs to be refueled after working for a year.

“The activities of the reactor of the Bushehr nuclear power plant will stop in the next few weeks for refueling,” Salehi told reporters in Tehran on Sunday.

Noting that the Bushehr nuclear power plant needs refueling twice a year, he said, “This (the refueling) shows that one year has passed from the start of the power plant’s activities.”

The Islamic Republic signed the Bushehr contract with Russia in 1995 and the nuclear power plant reached its full capacity by August 2012. It is located about 18 kilometers South of the provincial capital.

Senior official at the AEOI have always underlined that Bushehr enjoys a maximum level of safety.

Deputy Head of the AEOI in Strategic Relations and Parliamentary Affairs Behrouz Kamalvandi said in November that Bushehr nuclear power plant is among the most secure ones in the world.

He added that using power plant safety criteria and advanced technology as well as achieving high ranking of safety from the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) has placed Bushehr Nuclear Power Plant in a maximum safety standard.

Kamalvandi expressed Iran’s readiness to hold nuclear safety meetings either in regional or international levels in Iran at the end of next year in cooperation with the IAEA.

Also in mid-August, Salehi stressed that the facility's compliance with the latest international safety rules and standards stands atop the AEOI's priorities.

Salehi stressed that safety of the Bushehr nuclear power plant is the first priority of the AEOI, and the plant would not be handed over to Iran before the AEOI is quite certain about its safety.

Late in April, former Foreign Ministry Spokesman Ramin Mehman-Parast told FNA at Bushehr airport, "The Bushehr nuclear power plant is one of the best atomic facilities with the highest safety standards."

He underlined that the safety and high standards of the Bushehr nuclear power plant serves as a role model for other "peaceful nuclear activities in Iran".

The Nuclear Safety and Security Department of the IAEA in a recent visit to Iran approved the standard safety levels of all Iranian nuclear sites and installations, and lauded the country's measures and special efforts in this regard.

"We realized that Iran's safety system responsible for inspecting Iranian nuclear facilities and installations acts very well and is strong," Head of the IAEA's Nuclear Safety and Security Department Olena Mykolaichuk said in March 2012.

"I, as the head of the (inspection) team, assure the Iranian society that Iran's installations are safe…," Mykolaichuk added.

She also stressed that her team has visited the Bushehr nuclear power plant in Southern Iran and inspected the safety and security control system at the installations.

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