Malaysian court declines appeal to suspend Lynas plant

Workers stand on scaffolds inside Lynas factory during a media tour in Gebeng, 270 km east of Kuala Lumpur in this April 19, 2012 file photo. -- PHOTO: REUTERS

KUALA LUMPUR (REUTERS) - A Malaysian court on Wednesday declined to temporarily suspend the licence granted to Lynas' controversial rare earths plant as it waits to hear an application to permanently block the site, activists said.

Activists linked to the environmental group Save Malaysia Stop Lynas were appealing the Kuantan High Court's decision last week to lift the suspension on the temporary operating licence granted to Australia's Lynas.

After dismissing the appeal, the court set Nov 30 for the next hearing on the case, a lawyer for the activists told Reuters.

They wanted the court to suspend the licence until two judicial review cases challenging the government's decision allowing the plant to operate are heard.