On 8-20 October, the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) is conducting the Emergency Preparedness Review Service's mission in Belarus to review the country‘s emergency preparedness capabilities and its compliance with the IAEA's safety standards.
"We have repeatedly drawn the IAEA's attention to a potential impact of the Ostrovets nuclear power plant on Lithuania and Vilnius. Minimal compliance with nuclear safety standards by the Belarusian NPP is not acceptable to Lithuania. Belarus should permanently experience the international community's pressure to comply with the highest standards of nuclear safety. This is our goal. We also look forward to an objective assessment by the IAEA's experts, bearing in mind that Belarus has not considered the most adverse impact scenario in drafting its emergency preparedness plan. In case of this scenario, consequences would be felt also in Lithuania, "said the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Lithuania Linas Linkevičius.
According to the Minister, it is significant to plan and assess emergency preparedness also in Lithuania.
"It is important that Belarus does not start operating its nuclear facility, especially without remedying violations of international conventions and solving nuclear safety problems identified by international experts. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs together with other Lithuanian institutions will continue to raise the issue of the unsafe Ostrovets NPP. We will make use of all available international instruments to ensure that the NPP, which poses threats to our national security, environment and public health, would not operate in the neighborhood of Lithuania," said L. Linkevičius.
In this summer, international experts adopted their conclusions on stress tests that were carried out at the Ostrovets NPP. The international experts have discovered grave failures in severe nuclear accident management. They also noted other important issues, including the absence of a comprehensive seismic hazard assessment and flaws related to strengthening of safety functions.