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Japan is in quiet discussions with the International Atomic Energy Agency regarding significant amounts of plutonium and enriched uranium that were not reported or inventoried as required, Kyodo News reported on Thursday (see GSN, March 24).
Unexpected atomic materials were discovered in October 2010 within nuclear waste at the Japan Atomic Energy Agency's Oarai Research and Development Center in Ibaraki prefecture, according to high-level government officials. The waste had been placed there prior to the 1977 enactment of Japan's safeguards deal with the U.N. nuclear watchdog.