Friday, August 19, 2022

Saudi Arabia seeks to develop nuclear program

Saudi Arabia aims to take advantage of its uranium resources to develop its nuclear power program, Saudi Energy Minister Prince Abdulaziz bin Salman Al Saud revealed.

During the International Mining Conference in Riyadh, he highlighted the importance of energy flexibility to face the transition to clean energy, Al Arabiya News reported.

The minister said that the kingdom wants to benefit from nuclear technology to diversify its energy mix.

“We do have a huge amount of uranium resource, which we would like to exploit and we will be doing it in the most transparent way,” he added.

Saudi Arabia’s nuclear ambitions have prompted worries in the global community over the past few years, especially after Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman hinted in 2018 that the kingdom may go for nukes.

Citing Western officials, The Wall Street Journal reported that Saudi Arabia, with Chinese help, has built a facility for extraction of yellowcake from uranium ore near the remote town of al-Ula.

The New York Times also reported American intelligence agencies had spotted what appeared to be an undeclared nuclear site not too far from the Saudi town of al-Uyaynah.

Iran has warned that Saudi Arabia’s opposition to the UN nuclear watchdog’s access to its nuclear facilities reinvigorates speculations that the Arab country intends to develop atomic weapons.

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