Belarus nuclear plant to weaken Russia's role: president

(MINSK) - Belarus is planning to build a nuclear power plant that will weaken its reliance on energy imports from Russia and the European Union, Belarussian President Alexander Lukashenko said on Wednesday.

"The construction of a new power plant is not advantageous for Russia or for the Europeans because we are going to make our own energy at a good price... And if we do that, we won't buy it from them," Lukashenko said.

The Belarussian leader said that the plant would be built in Ostrovets in western Belarus near the Polish border and that a formal decision on construction would be taken "in the near future."

Belarus, an authoritarian former Soviet republic, was heavily contaminated by the fallout from the Chernobyl nuclear disaster in neighbouring Ukraine in 1986. It is highly reliant on Russian oil and gas imports.


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