Criminal case filed in Kazakhstan on export of radioactive coal to Kyrgyzstan
Kazakhstan, Astana, Feb.9 /Trend T.Nurmagambetova/
A criminal case has been filed in Kazakhstan on the export of radioactive coal to Kyrgyzstan by Kulan TB, the prosecutor's office of the Zhambyl region of Kazakhstan said on Thursday.
"The prosecutor's office has been investigating the delivery of radioactive coal being exported from the Kulansk deposits in Moyinkum to Kyrgyzstan by Kulan TB. The investigation revealed that there is a deposit of coal with high radioactivity that could not be used for commercial purposes and should be subject to compulsory disposal," the statement said.
Taking into account the fact that the regional committee for the Sanitary and Epidemiological Department came to the conclusion that the public's health could be at risk during loading, unloading and using such coal over a 10-hour period, the prosecutor's office noted that mining in the Kulanskoe field violates the state guarantees related to radiation safety established by Article 87, paragraph 9 of the Code; Nation's health and public health system, the statement said.
Work at Kulan TB is currently suspended and the company was fined 500.000 tenge (more than $3.3 thousand) for exporting the radioactive coal to Kyrgyzstan.
In addition, the investigation revealed that the coal was exported without proper government control.
A criminal case under Article 247 part 2 of the Criminal Code of Kazakhstan has been filed for the illegal sale of radioactive material. The work of custom officials, allowing the movement of radioactive goods across the border, will be assessed during the investigation, the report said. Currently access to the area with radioactive coal is prohibited.
The Prosecutor General of Kazakhstan has made a submission to the Ministry of Industry and Trade of the Republic on the issue of banning subsoil on the site.
Kazakhstan exported 8.576 tons of coal, radioactivity of which is 10 times higher, to Kyrgyzstan in September 2011.