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NZ contributing to disarmament, anti-nuke projects


NZ contributing to disarmament, anti-nuclear projects


New Zealand is contributing $1.2million to a Siberian chemical weapons destruction project and to assist with decommissioning Russia’s last plutonium-producing nuclear reactor, Disarmament and Arms Control Minister Phil Goff announced today.

“Our contribution to these two major G8 Global Partnership projects underlines New Zealand’s commitment to disarmament and to nuclear safety," Mr Goff said.

“Last year New Zealand contributed $1.2 million toward building a facility to destroy stockpiles of Russian chemical weapons in Siberia. A further $700,000 will be allocated to the project this financial year.

“A proportion of the year’s funding will benefit the community surrounding the chemical weapon destruction facility, through measures such as providing heating for a nursery school.

"In addition, $500,000 will go toward a project to shut down Russia’s last plutonium-producing nuclear reactor and replace it with a fossil fuel plant.

“New Zealand’s funding will be directed toward ensuring that the replacement fossil fuel plant at Zheleznogorsk meets high environmental standards.

“G8 countries have sought the widest possible international participation in its projects and New Zealand is pleased to be able to play its part," Mr Goff said.

Leaders of the G8 launched the Global Partnership against the Spread of Weapons and Materials of Mass Destruction in June 2002, and are committed to raising up to US$20 billion over 10 years to fund disarmament projects.

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