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Russian Workers at Bushehr Not Properly Dressed

An Iranian lawmaker is saying Russian women working in the country's sole nuclear power plant do not observe the strict Islamic dress code, though they are paid extra to comply.

Under Iranian law, all women must cover themselves from head to toe in public.

A Tuesday report by the semiofficial ISNA news agency quotes Mahdi Mousavinejad, a representative of the southern Iranian port of Bushehr, where the plant is located, as saying violation of dress code by the Russian workers has had a "corrupting and negative impact" on his constituency.

Mousavinejad says he will report on the case to the Iranian parliament. He did not say how many women were involved or how much they were paid.

State nuclear energy corporate Rosatom intends to hand over the plant to Iranian engineers in the middle of 2013.

"[The Bushehr nuclear power plant] should be commissioned in the first half of next year," Rosatom general director Sergei Kiryenko told Interfax. "Everything there has been launched, it is in operation."

Kiriyenko did not specify whether the facility had reached 100 percent capacity after the reloading of fuel for the station's reactor, which took place in October of this year.

Bushehr is situated on the Persian Gulf coast and has one power unit with 1,000 MW capacity. Its construction began in the 1970s by a consortium led by German company Siemens. However, Siemens subsequently pulled out of the contract with Iran for political reasons. In 1992, Russia and Iran agreed to complete the plant's first unit. Russian general contractor Atomstroiexport took over construction.

Bushehr was connected to the power grid and formally inaugurated in September 2011. The NPP was brought up to full capacity at the end of August 2012 but stopped in early October to reload fuel.

(AP, MT)

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