Rare Materials Plant (RMP)
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US agency accuses India of expanding military N-site
Vienna: The Institute for Science and International Security (ISIS), a Washingtonbased body which tends to take selective stands on nuclear non-proliferation, has sought to embarrass India on the eve of the a five-day meeting of the Board of Governors of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) starting here on Monday by claiming that the Indian government is expanding its military nuclear site near Mysore.
In a report supported by satellite imagery posted on Google Earth and said to have been captured on March 3 last, ISIS claimed that the site, known as the Rare Materials Plant (RMP), is India’s military gas centrifuge uranium enrichment programme. It continues that initial excavation and construction of a large building or buildings can be seen where, according to a 2005 satellite image, there were ponds, as the area was undeveloped.
Also, based on procurement data and public advertisements for bidding requests, ISIS concludes: ‘‘If the construction seen in the March 3, 2010, imagery is for a new gas centrifuge hall, India’s uranium enrichment capacity at RMP will be greatly expanded.’’ In 2006, it estimated that India was on the verge of adding at least 3,000 centrifuges to the RMP.
The IAEA, a technical wing of the UN, has certified its satisfaction with regards to inspections of Indian nuclear reactors following the 2009 pact on Application of Safeguards to Civilian Nuclear Facilities between the Agency and the Government of India. TNN