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ASTANA, February 17 (Itar-Tass) —— Another criminal case has been opened in Kazakhstan over sales of radioactive coal to Kyrgyzstan.
The first criminal case was opened by the prosecutor’s office of Kazakhstan’s Zhambyl region, where the radioactive coal supplier, Kulan TB LLC, is headquartered. This time the criminal case was opened by the regional customs control department.
The radioactive coal was supplied to Kyrgyzstan last fall from the Kulan deposit in neighboring Kazakhstan. In all, about 9,000 tons of radioactive coal reached Kyrgyzstan. Originally, the coal was meant to be used by the Bishkek heat plant but ultimately was found at schools and kindergartens of Kyrgyzstan’s Chui region. After it was established that radiation levels exceeded natural background levels by 15-24 times, the coal was urgently removed from children’s establishments to the Bishkek power plant and further on the coal was taken back from where it originated. The Kazakh side also agreed to reimburse the Kyrgyz side for transportation and storage costs.
Experts from the Institute of Nuclear Physics of the National Nuclear Centre are currently taking measurements of the returned coal. When the study is over a procedural decision on the two criminal cases will be taken. An in-house check has been launched at the Kulan customs office, via which the radioactive coal reached Kyrgyzstan.