Russia to Launch Iranian Nuclear Plant in 2009

Ad Feedback - TEHERAN, Iran - The head of Russia's nuclear program said his country will assist the Iranians to bring the Bushehr nuclear plant on-line this year.

"If there are no unforeseen events…then the launch will go according to the timetable," Sergei Kiriyenko, chief of Russia's state nuclear corporation, Rosatom, told reporters in Moscow, according to Russia's Interfax news agency.

"The launch is scheduled for this year," he said. "I personally intend to visit Bushehr this month."

According to the Rosatom spokesman, the initial technical startup will test the reactor's systems before supplying the grid with electricity for civilian consumption.

The Bushehr facility's launch has been announced and delayed numerous times, but Russia has already delivered nuclear fuel as part of its $1 billion contract with Iran.

Russia claims that Iran's lack of payment has delayed the plant's progress.

Source: Reuters

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