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Green Party criticises issuing of uranium mining research permits

The Environment Ministry has allowed geological research into uranium deposits without considering village development plans or public opinion, Green Party vice-chairman Peter Nováčik said on May 6.

The Environment Ministry has allowed geological research into uranium deposits without considering village development plans or public opinion, Green Party vice-chairman Peter Nováčik said on May 6.

"If uranium mining is permitted, 360 villages and towns inhabited by a million people will be endangered," added Nováčik.

The Green Party recommends that the state reject requests for research permits in the public interest.
"There are currently 12 geological research sites and one mining area that are close to populated towns, tourist facilities and natural landmarks in Slovakia," said Nováčik.

Mining would threaten public health and water resources, and could compel entrepreneurs to leave the affected area. The Green Party criticises Slovak laws, which it says are too favourable to foreign mining companies, and has asked for a new geological and mining law. According to the party, the state shouldn't disregard public opinion in the areas concerned.

"People have already voiced their disagreement with the mining of uranium in a petition, collecting 73,000 signatures. We want to reach the threshold of 100,000, as Parliament would then be obliged to deal with it," said party chairman Pavol Petrík.

The research areas in question are scattered throughout Slovakia: from Nové Mesto nad Váhom in the west to Zemplín in the east. The research areas cover a total of 300 square kilometres, with most of the research franchises owned by companies from Canada and Australia. TASR

b>Compiled by Zuzana Vilikovská from press reports
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