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IAEA Investigates Uranium Mine in Goesan

Posted September. 25, 2004 21:30,   


It has been confirmed that the second IAEA inspection team from the International Atomic Energy Agency had visited a uranium mine in Goesan, Chungbuk for an investigation. This would bring the number of subjects of the second round of investigation to a total of three places: the Korea Atomic Energy Research Institute in Daedeok-gu Daejeon, the research reactor in Gongreung, and the uranium mine in the Goesan region.

This investigation was virtually closed as the second IAEA inspection team was reported to have departed Korea on September 26 after recording the results of their investigation without a field study on September 25.

According to a government official on September 25, the second IAEA inspection team visited the uranium mine in the Goesan region on September 24, launching a field investigation and gathering minerals from the site.

The uranium mine in the Goesan region, which had been discovered during the 1970s, turned out to be low in its content of natural uranium, and was not developed further due to that reason.

Officials from the Ministry of Science and Technology said, “The purpose of the inspectors’ visit was to verify the content that the Korean government had reported.”

The second IAEA inspection team, which visited Korea on September 19, virtually closed its investigation with its visit to the uranium mine in the Goesan region. However the second IAEA inspection team was known not to have visited certain places mentioned as subjects for investigation such as Yongnam Chemical (presently Dongbu Hannong Chemical), which extracted uranium from phosphate rock in 1982, and the Wolsong nuclear power station in Gyeongju Gyeongbuk.

The content of the investigation will be submitted in report form to the IAEA’s regular board of administration in November.

Yong Park parky@donga.com