Turkey wants nuclear plant in Armenia to be shut down
ANKARA – Anadolu Agency
Minister Yıldız said Turkey had sent an official appeal to the International Atomic Energy Agency concerning the shutdown of the plant.The Metsamor nuclear power plant in Armenia is outdated and should be urgently closed down, Turkish Energy Minister Taner Yıldız has said, re-voicing concerns about the safety of the plant.
Speaking with reporters during a visit to the Turkish province of Iğdır near Turkey’s eastern border on March 21, Yıldız said Turkey had sent an official appeal to the International Atomic Energy Agency concerning the shutdown of the plant.
“The nuclear plant, which was put online in 1980, has had a lifespan of 30 years. This plant has expired and should be immediately closed,” Yıldız said.
He stressed Metsamor is just 16 kms away from Turkey’s border, and it was necessary to bring the issue to international attention and obtain support for the plant’s closure.
Turkey itself is also building up its energy future on nuclear power to reduce its soaring energy needs, defying safety risk concerns voiced by a number of groups at home.
The Metsamor nuclear power plant produces about 40 percent of Armenia’s electricity, but Turkey and Azerbaijan object to its existence as they believe it does not meet international safety standards.