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Japan's nuclear regulator to order a halt to reactor restart

Published on May 15, 2013 2:45 PM

TOKYO (AFP) - Japan's atomic regulator Wednesday ordered a halt to plans to restart an experimental reactor because of safety concerns, as a strong anti-nuclear mood grips the nation.

Local media said the move by the Nuclear Regulation Authority (NRA) would make it impossible for the Monju Prototype Fast Breeder Reactor to begin working again this fiscal year.

The NRA has been examining Monju since it was revealed last year that appropriate safety checks had been skipped on nearly 10,000 pieces of equipment at the plant, on the coast 350 kilometres west of Tokyo.

At a meeting on Wednesday, the watchdog approved a report that said the plant's operator was sloppy and had knowingly carried out safety checks inappropriately.

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