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Court orders gov't to halt nuclear reactor

All News 16:34 February 07, 2017

SEOUL, Feb. 7 (Yonhap) -- A Seoul court ordered the government Tuesday to cancel its decision to extend the operation of a nuclear reactor that was supposed to go offline in 2012.

The Seoul Administrative Court ruled in favor of an injunction sought by a group of local residents to annul the Nuclear Safety and Security Commission's approval of a 10-year extension of the lifespan of the Wolseong-1 reactor in Gyeongju, about 400 kilometers southeast of Seoul.

The court cited the failure of the state-run nuclear watchdog to follow due legal procedures.

The reactor was shut down in 2012 after reaching the end of its 30-year commercial operation period. However, the commission lengthened the operation for another 10 years and restarted it in June 2015.

The decision sparked safety concerns in the wake of the 2011 Fukushima nuclear disaster in Japan.

South Korea has 23 nuclear reactors in operation from which it gets about 30 percent of its electricity supply.

Some 2,167 nearby residents participated in the collective suit, but the court recognized only those living within an 80-kilometer radius as qualified to file the suit.

This file photo shows the Wolseong-1 nuclear reactor located in Gyeongju, some 400 kilometers southeast of Seoul. (Yonhap)


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