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Nazarbayev and Gorbachev to be awarded for closing Semipalatinsk testing site

11 november 2011, 16:22
0
Kazakhstan President Nursultan Nazarbayev. Photo courtesy of akorda.kz
Kazakhstan President Nursultan Nazarbayev. Photo courtesy of akorda.kz
Mikhail Gorbachev. ©RIA Novosti
Mikhail Gorbachev. ©RIA Novosti
Kazakhstan President Nursultan Nazarbayev and President of the USSR Mikhail Gorbachev will be awarded for closing Semipalatinsk testing site prior to the 20th anniversary of the event, chairman of the public organization Soyuz Semipalatinsk of Novosibirsk oblast Yelena Yakubovskaya told RIA Novosti.

She said that all people who helped close the testing site will receive the medals. Besides Nazarbayev and Gorbachev, the awards will be given to heads of Novosibirsk city and Novosibirsk oblast, as well as to active members of Soyuz Semipalatinsk. “The ones who have been helping us in the last 17 years,” Yakubovskaya said.

Semipalatinsk nuclear testing site was closed on August 29, 1991. 468 nuclear tests were made there between 1949 an 1989. The overall power of the explosions made in 1949-1963 is estimated to 2.5 thousand times exceed the power of the nuclear bomb exploded in Hiroshima. According to the official information, around 1.3 million people suffered from the tests.

According to Nazarbayev, today's generation of Kazakhstan citizens undervalues the meaning of the closure of Semipalatinsk testing site. The President thinks that signing the Decree on closing Semipalatinsk nuclear testing site “keeps blending down with the past”.

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