- Texas man arrested for powder-letter hoax
- Islamic State opens ‘marriage bureau’ for single jihadists
- Drone almost blocks California firefighting planes
- Tornado rips off roofs, downs trees near Boston
- GOP: Environmental rules keeping agents from accessing border
- John Kerry: Millions displaced by religious fighting in 2013
- Federal appeals court rules against Virginia’s gay marriage ban
- White House says Russia ‘losing’ war in Ukraine
- Hamas turns to North Korea for weapons deal, Iran for money
- Syrian casualties surge as jihadis consolidate
Question of the Day
Russia is unlikely to fulfill contract obligations for the construction of more than a dozen nuclear power plants in six countries, including China and Iran, according to the U.S. ambassador in Moscow.
Ambassador John Beyrle, in a private cable leaked Thursday, said Russia’s state-owned nuclear power contractor, Atomstroyexport, faces a serious shortage of trained workers. The company also lacks sufficient credit to finance the projects and special machines to build the power plants, the ambassador said.
An atomic energy official in the Turkish government, Bulat Nigmatulin, told the ambassador that Russia’s plans to build four reactors in Turkey “are a fantasy.”
“However, the crunch on credit, insufficient machine-building infrastructure and a paucity of trained specialists make it unlikely that Atomstroyexport will be able to realize all of these plans soon.”
The ambassador said Russia is “diligently pursuing construction contracts for 11 new nuclear reactors in India, Iran, Bulgaria and Ukraine.” Moscow is in “active discussions” to build two power plants in China and four in Turkey, he said.
“Even without the crunch the financial crisis could put on [Russian government] loans, the lack of sufficient nuclear industry infrastructure and trained specialists will make it hard for [Atomstroyexport] to fulfill existing contracts on time,” he said.
Mr. Beyrle’s unclassified cable to Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton was released by the anti-secrecy website WikiLeaks.
CANADA WOOS CHINA
Canada’s conservative government got little to show for a charm offensive to improve commercial ties with China, according to a private diplomatic cable from the U.S. Embassy in Ottawa.
Prime Minister Stephen Harper dispatched Finance Minister Jim Flaherty on a special trip to China in 2007. That visit coincided with another trip to Beijing by David Emerson, who was Canada’s international trade minister at the time.
“Excluding an agreement to cooperate on scientific research, the trips resulted in no apparent deliverables for Canada,” David Wilkins, U.S. ambassador in Ottawa at the time, reported in the cable.
“However, they did serve to placate Canadian business leaders who had been concerned that the Canadian government was not paying enough attention to China.”
© Copyright 2014 The Washington Times, LLC. Click here for reprint permission.
About the Author
James Morrison joined the The Washington Times in 1983 as a local reporter covering Alexandria, Va. A year later, he was assigned to open a Times bureau in Canada. From 1987 to 1989, Mr. Morrison was The Washington Times reporter in London, covering Britain, Western Europe and NATO issues. After returning to Washington, he served as an assistant foreign editor ...
- Embassy Row: India strikes back over diplomat's arrest
- Embassy Row: India 'shocked,' 'appalled' by consular officer's arrest
- Wife of jailed U.S. Christian in Iran calls for White House help
- Embassy Row: Wife of Christian held in Iran feels abandoned by Obama
- Senate debate: Is Santa Claus an American citizen?
Latest Blog Entries
TWT Video Picks
By David Keene
Allowing states to innovate could reduce dependency on bureaucracy
- D.C. seeks to stay judge's order allowing gun owners to carry in public
- Illegal immigrants demand representation in White House meetings
- White House says Russia 'losing' war in Ukraine
- Hillary Clinton: Forget Obama, George W. Bush made her 'proud to be an American'
- HAYDEN: Intelligence, evidence and the case against Russia
- Border surge puts Obama legacy on immigration at stake
- Romney would win popular vote in rematch against Obama: CNN poll
- Iraqi Christians rally at White House: 'Obama, Obama, where are you?'
- Report: 40% of weapons sent to Afghanistan are unaccounted for
- KING: "Man-caused disaster" on the southern border
Obama's biggest White House 'fails'
Celebrities turned politicians
Athletes turned actors
20 gadgets that changed the world
Fighting in Iraq