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Israel reviving plans to build nuclear power plant

Isreal's infrastructure minister says that the country is reviving plans for a nuclear power plant in the southern Negev Desert.

world Updated: Aug 04, 2007 15:23 IST
DPA

Israel is reviving plans for a nuclear power plant in the southern Negev Desert, Israel Army Radio quoted the infrastructure minister as saying.

The minister, Binyamin Ben-Eliezer said he has the support of Prime Minister Ehud Olmert, and that the prime minister's office and the Infrastructure Ministry have formed a joint team.

Ben-Eliezer spoke on Friday to a gathering of engineers in the town of Herzliya, according to Israel Army Radio, which carried his remarks on its Web site. "The government of Israel is to make a historic decision concerning the building of a nuclear power plant ... in the Negev," Ben-Eliezer was quoted as saying.

He said the project would be presented to the government for approval in coming months.

If approved, the power plant would take about eight years to complete, the radio said.

The construction of a nuclear power plant could draw renewed attention to what is widely believed to be Israel's nuclear weapons program. Following a policy that it calls "nuclear ambiguity," Israel has never acknowledged or denied having a nuclear weapons program.