PROJECTS: Iraq moves to build nuclear reactors

20 possible sites picked

  
Iraqis work at Al-Quds power plant in northern Baghdad November 9, 2008. Image used for illustrative purpose.

Iraqis work at Al-Quds power plant in northern Baghdad November 9, 2008. Image used for illustrative purpose.

REUTERS/Thaier al-Sudani

Iraq has selected 20 sites as possible locations for the construction of its first nuclear reactors since atomic facilities were destroyed in wars more than 30 years ago. 

A committee created in 2020 by Prime Minister Mustafa Al-Kadhimi to oversee the building of nuclear reactors has designated 20 possible sites through Iraq and will conduct studies to shortlist 5 locations. 

“We will shortlist 5 of those 20 sites…we will then select two locations including one firm option and an alternative site,” said Hussein Latif, Chairman of the Iraqi Radioactive Sources Regulatory Authority. 

Latif, quoted on Thursday by the official Iraqi Alsabah newspaper, said that the facilities would be built in locations which are at least 5 kilometres (km) from areas inhabited with a maximum 500 people and 30 km from areas with a population of minimum 65,000. 

He said the reactors would be for scientific research and peaceful purposes but he did not mention how many facilities would be constructed. 

Electricity shortages have plagued Iraq for decades due to years of destruction in internal conflicts and rampant corruption claims. Such shortages have forced Iraq to become heavily reliant on nearby Iran. 

(Writing by Nadim Kawach; Editing by Anoop Menon)

(anoop.menon@refinitiv.com)

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