Valencia : Trucks coming from Morocco seized for carrying radioactive loads

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Three trucks coming from Morocco have been stranded in the port of Valencia, Spain said Le Desk quoting EFE news agency. According to the Spanish Civil Guard, the trucks were carrying radioactive loads, containing substances such as uranium 235 and 238, plutonium-239, radium-226 and gallium 66.

The three trucks were carrying fertilizers for a company called Silla, an importer of a Moroccan firm. The commodity was loaded in Jorf Lasfar, said the Spanish daily newspaper Levante, adding that radioactive contamination reached 1becquerel (Bq), while the maximum amount allowed is 0.4.

While the Spanish news agency said that the quantity found in the trucks is not to harm people and the environment, Levante reports that the source of the fertilizer contamination has not been revealed yet. Indeed, plutonium 239 and gallium 66 are mainly «used in the production of nuclear weapons, although this is not their only use,» the paper added.

«As for plutonium 239 and uranium 235 : They are maily used as the fuel in nuclear reactors because their nuclei are relatively large and easy to split (...) knowing that Morocco does not own such reactors,» said Levante again.

According to the Spanish daily, one of the elements that should be explained is how these fertilizers have been contaminated by nuclear waste.

In the meantime, the trucks will remain confined in a bunker, until the Nuclear Security Center (CSN) decides whether the goods will be shipped to their exporting country, or whether a technical team will open the cargoes to bury the goods in a nuclear cemetery.

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