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South Korea

South Korea Shuts Nuclear Reactors Over Dodgy Parts

THE KOREA HERALD (South Korea), BBC NEWS (UK)

Worldcrunch

SEOUL - South Korea has shut down two nuclear reactors after it was revealed that some parts used had not been properly vetted, reports BBC News.

Almost all the parts were used in a nuclear power complex in Yeonggwang, which is located some 330 kilometers southwest of Seoul.

Knowledge Economy Minister Hong Suk-woo warned it could lead to an "unprecedented" power shortage in the country. In South Korea, temperatures regularly drop well below freezing during winter.

According to the Korea Herald, Hong said eight part suppliers faked 60 warranties for 234 parts since 2003.

All together, they supplied 7,682 unqualified items worth 820 million won ($750,000) to the Korea Hydro & Nuclear Power Co., KHNP, the state-run operator of the nation’s 23 nuclear reactors.

However, Hong said the parts were "non-core" components and posed no safety threat.

The parts include fuses, cooling fans and power switches.

He also said prosecutors would investigate the suppliers as well as possible collusion by officials of the state-run KHNP.

South Korea's nuclear plants, which supply 35% of the country's electricity, have experienced a series of malfunctions over the past few months, adds BBC News.

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Geopolitics

How Ukraine Keeps Getting The West To Flip On Arms Supplies

The open debate on weapon deliveries to Ukraine is highly unusual, but Kyiv has figured out how to use the public moral suasion — and patience — to repeatedly shift the question in its favor. But will it work now for fighter jets?

Photo of a sunset over the USS Nimitz with a man guiding fighter jets ready for takeoff

U.S fighter jets ready for takeoff on the USS Nimitz

Pierre Haski

-Analysis-

PARIS — In what other war have arms deliveries been negotiated so openly in the public sphere?

On Monday, a journalist asked Joe Biden if he plans on supplying F-16 fighter jets to Ukraine. He answered “No”. A few hours later, the same question was asked to Emmanuel Macron, about French fighter jets. Macron did not rule it out.

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Visiting Paris on Tuesday, Ukrainian Defense Minister Oleksïï Reznikov recalled that a year ago, the United States had refused him ground-air Stinger missiles deliveries. Eleven months later, Washington is delivering heavy tanks, in addition to everything else. The 'no' of yesterday is the green light of tomorrow: this is the lesson that the very pragmatic minister seemed to learn.

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