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Cumbrian Euro-MP supports Sellafield inspections

September 3, 2004 9:05 PM

The European Commission has today (Friday 3 September) launched legal proceedings against the UK over nuclear safety at Sellafield, Cumbria.

The European Court of Justice will hear claims that Britain has not been allowing the EU inspectors proper access.

EU inspectors are requires to check on material being stored in nuclear plants, to ensure it is not being diverted from peaceful purposes. Inspectors have complained since their first visit in 1986 of poor access.

Liberal Democrat Chris Davies who represents Cumbria and the North West said:

"It is extraordinary that the British government has failed to ensure proper access to independent inspectors. This country went to war against Iraq for very similar reasons.

"It is vital not just to the rest of Europe but to the whole of the world that we can be confident that nuclear material is not being lost and that every item can be fully accounted for.

"Nearly 50 years ago Britain signed the Euratom Treaty and accepted the need for independent verification. The suspicion lingers that something must be very wrong if the European Commission feels that it is necessary to take Britain to court to protect the interest of people everywhere."