German waste on way to British reprocessing plant

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The Independent Online

The first German atomic waste transport to Britain's Sellafield reprocessing plant since 1998 has got under way after a slight delay when protesters staged a sit–in on the route.

The first German atomic waste transport to Britain's Sellafield reprocessing plant since 1998 got under way today after a slight delay when protesters staged a sit–in on the route.

Police removed about 60 demonstrators who delayed the transport of the containers by about an hour. The protesters vowed to take further action to hinder the shipment.

The waste from the Neckarwestheim nuclear power plant was then taken without disturbance by truck in three containers to a station in Walheim where they are being loaded onto rail cars after being examined for radioactivity.

The waste cars are to be assembled tomorrow afternoon with a transport from the Biblis nuclear power plant in western Hesse state for transport to Sellafield.

Germany had suspended dealings with Sellafield in the wake of a scandal over the falsification of records at the plant last year, but says it has now been assured that regulations have been tightened.

The German government and power companies agreed last year to phase out Germany's 19 nuclear plants, though it could take more than 20 years before the last is closed.

Anti–nuclear groups argue transporting the material is still not safe and want to force a quicker shutdown.

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