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PostPosted: Dec 07, 2017 1:11 am 
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U.S. energy chief says to start negotiations on nuclear pact with Riyadh

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U.S. Energy Secretary Rick Perry, who this week visited Saudi Arabia on his first official trip to the region told Reuters that negotiations between the two allies will start soon to tackle the details of the pact - known as a 123 agreement. “We heard that message that ... ‘we want the United States to be our partner in this’,” Perry said, referring to discussions he had during his meetings with Falih and the top Saudi leadership. Perry met with Saudi King Salman and Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman during his trip. But one potential sticking point could prove to be Riyadh’s ambitions to have the ability of one day enriching uranium - the process for producing fissile material which can have military uses. Riyadh has said it wants to tap its own uranium resources for “self-sufficiency in producing nuclear fuel” and it was not interested in diverting nuclear technology to military use. But under Article 123 of the U.S. Atomic Energy Act, a peaceful cooperation agreement is required for the transfer of nuclear materials, technology and equipment. Washington usually requires a country to sign a pact that blocks it from making nuclear fuel which has potential bomb-making applications. In previous talks Saudi Arabia has refused to sign up to any agreement that would deprive it of the possibility of one day enriching uranium itself. Perry declined to comment whether that issue was raised during his visit to Saudi Arabia.


This is a very significant development indicating that the new US administration is going to take a much more realistic approach to the world nuclear situation than the previous administration. The Obama State Department's "gold standard" approach to 1-2-3 agreements, insisting that countries renounce any future plans to enrich uranium and reprocess spent fuel, completely backfired on them. Countries that were interested in these options essentially told the US to go pound sand and marched right into the loving arms of the Chinese and Russians, who had no such compunctions. So rather than enhancing global nuclear security, the posture of the Obama administration did nothing but "virtue signal" to their anti-nuclear fellow travellers that they would not position the US in a leadership position in global nuclear matters.

Trump and Perry are dealing with the world as it actually is, not as they wish it was.


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PostPosted: Dec 16, 2017 10:41 am 
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U.S. To Boost Saudi Nuclear Power Development

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Another potential issue for Saudi Arabia, regardless of which contractor it selects, is where to put any reactors it decides to build. A nuclear plant requires an abundant supply of cooling water, which Saudi Arabia does not have except on its coasts. The country’s most prominent geophysicist, Dr. Abdullah al-Amri of King Saud University, argued in a 2011 interview that neither coast is suitable–the Red Sea coast because it is potentially volcanic, the Gulf coast because it is sedimentary and unstable. Al-Amri said there are geologically suitable sites in the vast interior, but cooling water would have to be piped to them. He said the government does not want to do that because a pipeline supplying cooling water to an active nuclear reactor in the sparsely-populated interior would be an easy target for terrorists. Nevertheless, Saudi Arabia is committed–at least on paper–to constructing as many as 16 reactors by about 2040.


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PostPosted: Dec 25, 2017 2:18 pm 
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Saudi Arabia should not forfeit 'sovereign' right to enrich uranium: senior prince


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PostPosted: Feb 23, 2018 10:58 am 
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Saudis recruit legal muscle for leverage in US nuclear negotiations

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Newly published lobbying disclosures reveal that the Saudi Ministry of Energy, Industry and Mineral Resources hired Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman in the past few days to “advise” it on “a potential bilateral agreement with the United States concerning peaceful uses of nuclear energy.” The firm will also provide Riyadh with guidance on “related legal matters concerning the development of a commercial nuclear program.” The deal is for an initial term of approximately 30 days and billing comes to $890 per hour.


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PostPosted: Feb 27, 2018 8:04 am 
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Perry Plans Nuclear-Energy Talks With Saudis, Sources Say

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Perry scrapped a trip to New Delhi to accommodate meetings at the White House this week, creating an opening for him to lead an inter-agency delegation to London, said the people, who asked not to be named to discuss administration strategy. The administration is considering permitting Saudi Arabia to enrich and reprocess uranium as part of a deal that would allow Westinghouse Electric Co. and other American companies to build nuclear reactors in the Middle East kingdom. The meetings in London between Perry and Saudi Arabia’s Minister of Energy and Industry Khalid Bin Abdulaziz Al-Falih are seen as a critical step in months of ongoing discussions over a potential nuclear cooperation agreement, bringing together key deal makers from each country.


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PostPosted: Mar 02, 2018 10:21 am 
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Saudis Reportedly Seek Parity With Iran In Nuclear Power Deal With U.S.


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PostPosted: Mar 09, 2018 9:38 am 
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Saudi Arabia enlists US lobbyists in quest to build nuclear plants


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PostPosted: Mar 13, 2018 2:31 pm 
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Saudi Arabia and nukes


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PostPosted: Mar 17, 2018 5:04 pm 
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Saudi Arabia turns to nuclear power to curb oil addiction


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PostPosted: Mar 23, 2018 3:34 am 
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U.S.’s Pass on Saudi Reactors Benefits China, Russia, Perry Says


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PostPosted: Apr 22, 2018 11:07 am 
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Will Washington offer Riyadh a ‘flexible’ nuclear deal?


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