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Parliamentary questions
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18 April 2017
Question for written answer E-002781-17
to the Council
Rule 130
Vilija Blinkevičiūtė (S&D)

 Subject:  Safety of the Belarusian nuclear power plant built in Astravets
 Answer in writing 

On nuclear safety the EU remains committed to the promotion and continuous improvement of the highest level of standards in third countries. The Council has confirmed this on numerous occasions in its conclusions.

Despite this, about 20 km from the Lithuanian state border — also an external EU border — in Astravets, Belarus is building a nuclear power plant which does not comply with international nuclear safety standards or environmental requirements.

The place chosen by Belarus for a nuclear power plant is considered dangerous and unsuitable. What is more, the standards of the construction works have been compromised, and the construction process lacks transparency and communication about its progress. Violations of the Espoo and Aarhus conventions have been reported.

Lithuania is calling for construction of the Belarusian nuclear power plant in Astravets to be suspended until proper measures are taken to ensure that the power plant can be operated safely and until the questions of interested parties are answered. Lithuania is also calling for a panel of international experts to be set up to carry out the review and comprehensive analysis of the project in order to ensure compliance with the most important international nuclear safety standards and international conventions.

Does the Council support Lithuania's demands on this matter? What measures will the Council take to ensure that the Belarusian nuclear power plant complies with the highest level of EU nuclear safety standards?

Original language of question: LT 
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